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Pharaoh ants and the fight against them

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Pharaoh ants - the invaders apartments

Pharaoh ants (often mistakenly also referred to as "pharaoh ants") are the only species of tropical ants who have managed to expand their range far to the north and south due to the colonization of human habitation. Today the Pharaoh ant has managed to become a real cosmopolitan, having spread to almost all the continents of the world and become a headache for millions of residents of apartments and houses.

Today, pharaoh ants are uninvited guests in many apartments and houses.

The historical homeland of the pharaoh ant is India. Due to its unpretentiousness, small size and some features of biology, it was this insect that was able to master the ships of the navigators for life, and then the port cities. And already from them, the red-headed conquerors began a victorious march into the depth of each country, which they accidentally penetrated.

It is interesting

Pharaoh ants got their name because they were first caught in the Egyptian pyramids in the XVIII century.Literally immediately after this, the insects were described by Linnaeus, who decided that Egypt was their homeland, and called the ants themselves Pharaoh.

Today, most researchers are inclined to believe that the real homeland of the pharaoh ants is the territory of Hindustan.


Appearance of pharaoh ants

Pharaoh ants are very small members of their family. Working ants have a body length of about 1.5-2 mm, a queen is up to 4 mm, males are about 3 mm.

Working individuals of pharaoh ants

In the photo: workers, the uterus and eggs of domestic ants

Pharaoh ants were also named red for their characteristic color - the color of the body of the working ant is light brown, almost yellow. The photo shows a working ant with a high magnification.

Pharaoh's Uterus darker and similar to ordinary black garden relatives. The photo shows such a queen surrounded by workers:

Pharaoh's ants uterus surrounded by workers

It is noteworthy that all the pharaoh ants on the abdomen have clear yellow stripes, but because of the small size of the workers, they are not particularly noticeable.

Eggs and larvae of this species rarely catch the eye: ants prefer to set up a colony in places where it is difficult for a person to reach.Ant eggs have a diameter of about 0.3 mm, the larvae reach a length of 1-1.5 mm and resemble the eggs themselves: as seen in the photo, they are white, translucent and stationary:

The photo shows the eggs and larvae of pharaoh ants.

It is the size and color of the body that Pharaoh ants differ from other species. In addition, in the conditions of our country, this species cannot exist outside of human habitation, and therefore it practically does not occur with other relatives in one place. So if the ants met in the apartment, and even a whole crowd - this is probably the "Indian-Egyptian guests."


Biology features of the yellow invaders

The main feature of the pharaoh ant is its thermophilicity. Tropical origin has an effect: this species cannot exist at temperatures below 20 ° C, although in houses and apartments anthills successfully survive short-term decreases in temperature to 10-12 ° C.

Outside the limits of heated premises in the entire former CIS, this species cannot inhabit. In winter, even fairly mild by Russian standards in the southern regions, they simply freeze.

Pharaoh ants are heat-loving insects

It is interesting

In the conditions of the Russian winter no species of ants can not live actively on the surface of the soil.Domestic species for half a year arrange for themselves wintering, closing in anthills, moving little and rarely eating. Some even carry away in the dungeons aphid, providing them with delicacies. Pharaoh’s ant wintering in the biological cycle is not provided, and they need to be warm and close to food all year round.

Like all ants, the pharaoh ant is omnivorous: any crumbs, products of plant and animal origin, decaying organic matter, and other insects are suitable for food.

Pharaoh's ant is omnivorous

An anthill of this species has a very interesting structure. As long as it is small, the entire nest can be placed on several square centimeters under the flooring or among the books. When an anthill grows, parts of it can budge with the creation of additional nests in separate places of the dwelling, but the connection of the “branches” themselves is maintained, and ants from different nests do not quarrel with each other.

It is interesting

The first ants in Europe appeared in the ports of London and settled under mantels in fairly wealthy homes.

But the main feature that the Pharaohs ants possess is the tolerance of queens to each other.In one colony several tens or even hundreds of breeding females can live together. Of course, the destruction of one nest from such a supermill has little effect on the vital activity of others.


Pharaoh ants in the apartment

Pharaoh ants in the apartment feel even more comfortable than its true owners. They can base their nests almost anywhere, constantly make new paths to food sources and expand their settlements.

In search of food, ants periodically lay new paths

In its spread throughout the premises, the pharaoh ants are limited only by the available food supplies. They easily penetrate into the neighboring apartments and can live and multiply well under the parquet of the living room, and feed from the garbage chute.

An anthill can be located anywhere, both in the apartment and outside

In this nest of pharaoh ants can be located almost anywhere. These can be cavities behind baseboards or under furniture, cracks in the floors, piling up things in storerooms, clothes folds, boxes from discs — everywhere where the temperature is maintained and where people don’t often look.

The most noticeable in the apartment are ants foragers who run along the paths laid and marked by them in search of or during the transportation of food.Noticing them, you should not immediately try to destroy them. It is much more reasonable to trace their movement and calculate the nest dislocation. There it will be easier to destroy the pests.


How to get rid of pharaoh ants

Get rid of the pharaoh ants in the apartment is very difficult. Their huge anthill megalopolis can be located in several apartments and house premises. Sources of food for them can serve as stocks in residential premises, and dirt in the garbage disposal, and in the summer - organic matter from the street. It is precisely because of this that insects do not particularly suffer from the destruction of one or several nests: the colonizers of the survivors quickly master the liberated territories and restore their numbers to them.

Pharaoh ants are able to quickly restore their numbers.

The simplest case is when the anthill is just beginning to develop, and the insects have not yet managed to organize the daughter nests. If you find such a colony and it is banal to vacuum, the fight against ants can be considered over.

If ants live in a house for a long time, excretion it is best to entrust them to specialists from special disinsection services. In this case, the fight against insects must be carried out by joint efforts of all residents of the house.Those neighbors who do not support the initiative will provide the ants with a chance to survive in their apartments.

You can get rid of pharaoh ants yourself with the help of several types of tools:

  • Aerosols - they diligently sprayed all surfaces in the apartment and especially - the places of the most frequent movement of insects. If the aerosol penetrates into the nest, the ants are guaranteed to die. If the nest is located outside the spray area, then only those working ants that have been sprayed will become extinct.
  • Gels are effective baits containing powerful insecticides. Their beauty lies in the fact that the foragers ants carry droplets of gels into the nest, where they will poison their other brethren and the queen as well. The action of the gels is stretched in time, but with a systematic work gives a very good result.
  • Insecticidal dusts and crayons. These means simply fall on the paws of the ants, and when the insects try to clear themselves of them, they poison themselves. Of course, on the legs of the poison can penetrate into the colony of pests.
  • Proven folk remedies - borax, boric acid, yeast, cornmeal. These substances are poisonous to ants, and they can be used to make effective poison baits.

Other means - scaring herbs, sticky traps - either scare away ants for a while, not destroying them, or exterminating only foragers, without affecting the colony itself. There will be practically no result from their use.

When dealing with domestic ants, one must be very careful in choosing the means and method of their destruction.

Choosing a remedy for pharaoh ants, ultrasonic and magnetic resonance scarers should not be considered - their ants are not afraid, and such devices will not help to get rid of these insects. Read more about these tools in a separate article on our website.

The best protection against pharaoh ants will be reliable prevention of their appearance in the apartment: maintaining cleanliness, the absence of debris and openly stored food waste, the treatment of insects into the house by insecticides. There are cases when, with proper prevention, apartment owners managed to protect it from ants with a total infection of a whole multi-storey building.


Video note: Pharaoh ants have been tormenting apartment block residents for years


To the entry "Pharaoh ants and the fight against them" 6 comments
  1. Anonymous:

    Thank you very much to the author, it was quite informative to read, I rarely can even go past a well-written article, thank you for sharing your experience, good luck and development.

  2. Irina:

    About ten years ago these red-haired guests came to our apartment. Were mostly in the kitchen and rarely met on the floor in the toilet. I started the fight immediately, so, probably, I got rid of them without problems. 1. All bulk products in jars; 2Bread and cookies stored in the refrigerator; 3. Garbage bag kept constantly tied; 4. All the furniture from the back was painted with a pencil (I don’t remember the name, like a mashine); 4. Not a single crumb left on the table and the floor; 5. Wiped water whenever possible from all surfaces, sink, table, etc. (somewhere at that time I read that they definitely need water). More they did not return. Order and cleanliness - the key to quick deliverance. I wish you all good luck in the fight!

  3. Maksim:

    Bread can't eat calmly

  4. Andrew:

    Free life hacking. We have these parasites lived for about 10 years, could not get them out. Every day he killed them in dozens. But once something changed - there were fewer ants, and then they completely disappeared, and this has been going on for over a year now. Not a single ant. The recipe is simple - a silverfish settled in our apartment, or something similar. For all the time I saw her twice. Apparently, she devoured all the ants. She looks unpleasant, but it's better than hordes of ants.

  5. Kolya:

    Tortured these ants. Drive back to your India, redheads.

  6. Anton:

    Hello! For more than 2 years I can’t get bedbugs in any way, all chemistry affects them only on contact,and if he stayed behind the baseboard and didn’t get on him, then all de-processing is useless ... In this regard, the question is: is it worth to bring red ants from the dacha? They eat all the bugs, and then I will bring ants?

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