Signs of an Ant Infestation
If you’ve seen a few ants scuttling around on the floor, they might be just having a look around. However, they might be the sign of a larger ant infestation.
Ants Infestation Signs
Live ants - If you’re seeing large numbers of live ants then you may well have a problem. If you find them in your kitchen or in areas where you prepare food, then you need to do something about it fast.
Ant pathways - In and out of your home or premises are another sign. Some types of ant will lay down a pheromone trail to a food source. This chemical attracts other ants to find the food.
Ant nest - A nest site can look like a small pile of soil or dirt. Some species of ant like to make their home in walls or other quiet, dark places, which are more difficult to spot.
How To Deal with an Ant Infestation
Our Pest Control Technicians understand the habits of different types of ant and can offer the most appropriate and effective solution. All our treatments are safe for your family and your pets.
Ant Facts
•    Ants belong to the insect order Hymenoptera. They are close relatives of bees and wasps.
•    Each colony can hold up to half a million ants. They can all get up and go very quickly if the colony is threatened.
•    Worker ants can live for up to seven years, while a queen can live for up to 15 years.
•    Ants swarm once every year in August. The young queens fly away and set up their own, new colonies. If you hear people talking about flying ants, this may be the swarm they are referring to, or they could be termite alates (winged reproductives).

How to Prevent Ants
If you’re worried that you might be at risk from an ant infestation you can put in place some simple ant repellant and ant deterrent measures. The checklist below will help you keep your home or business free from ants, or make sure your infestation doesn’t grow.
Most ants only come into your home to look for food. They are attracted to anything that’s sweet and sticky, which is why you find ants in kitchen cupboards or areas where food is kept.
With that in mind it’s important to not leave temptation in their path. To get rid of ants you must remember to:
Clear up - food and liquid spillages immediately.
Sweep up - any food crumbs from under your kitchen appliances and units.
Store your food - in airtight containers wherever possible.
If you have a pet - clear away any food that isn’t eaten straight away.
Block off - the entry points for ants by sealing all cracks and crevices around your doors and window frames.
In the garden - keep your compost enclosed and make sure all rubbish bins have tightly sealed lids.
Above all, cover any food in storage areas - you don’t know where ants have been walking before they march across your food.
If you’re finding it hard to get rid of ants call ecofumitech to arrange an appointment.
FACT: Once an ant has discovered a food source it leaves a pheromone trail. This chemical helps other ants from the colony to find the food too

Common Ant Species
There are thousands of ant species, but here are some you are more likely to find in the UK.
Garden Ant (Lasius niger)
 
Appearance
•    Workers 4-5mm long.
•    Queens 15mm long.
•    Dark brown-black in colour.
•    1 small segment at waist point (pedicel).
•    No sting present.
Life Cycle
•    Queens overwinter in soil. Eggs are laid in late spring.
•    Larvae hatch 3-4 weeks later.
•    Larvae feed on secretions from the queen’s salivary glands until the first worker ants emerge.
•    Worker ants continue with larval care, nest building and food foraging.
•    Fertile males are produced later in the season.
Habits
•    Foraging worker ants follow well–defined trails around food sources. Sweet foods are preferred but high protein foods will also be taken.
•    Swarming characteristics – mating between queens and fertile males takes place on the wing mid to late summer. Males perish after mating.
•    Nest locations – often outdoors in soil and below paving slabs on the sunny side of buildings.
•    Nest locations can be identified by the presence of finely powdered soil around nest exit holes.

Roger’s Ant (Hypoponera punctatissima)

Appearance
•    Reddish brown in colour.
•    Workers 2mm long.
•    1 large segment at the pedicel.
•    First two segments of the abdomen are constricted.
•    Sting present.
Life Cycle
•    Little is known about the lifecycle.
Habits
•    Workers forage randomly and lay no trails as live prey are hunted, especially springtails. Rarely seen outdoors.
•    Swarming characteristics — will swarm all year round. Winged adults are often found in electric fly killers.
•    Nest locations — damp residues and debris. Crevices around drains and behind broken wall tiles.

Pharaoh’s Ant (Monomorium pharaonis)

Appearance
•    Workers 1.5-2mm long, yellow-brown with brown abdomen.
•    Males 3mm long, black, winged.
•    Queens 3.5-6mm long, dark red in colour with wings.
•    Black eyes, 2 small segments at the pedicel.
Life Cycle
•    Multi-queen colonies.
•    Swarming can take place at any time of the year.
•    Winged adults seldom fly so rarely seen. Wings are soon lost after mating.
Habits
•    Well–defined trails are laid which are often associated with heating systems. Feeds indoors on high protein foods — meat, fats, blood, dead insects, etc.
•    Swarming characteristics — new colonies are often formed through nests that have been disturbed e.g., as a result of insecticide spray treatments.
•    Each queen produces up to 3500 eggs in its lifetime.
•    Nest locations — deep seated in cavities in heated buildings. Often found in hospitals. Associated with humid conditions. Colonies can range from a few dozen to 300,000 individuals.

Ghost Ant (Tapinoma melanocephalum)
 
Appearance
•    Pale/Translucent legs and abdomen.
•    1/16 inch long.
Life Cycle
•    Continuous breeding colonies.
Habits
•    Feeding – indoors: sweet substances and grease; outdoors: insects that produce honeydew.
•    Nesting – indoors: small spaces, wall voids; outdoors: in flowerpots, under objects on the ground, under loose bark.
•    Locations - attracted to high moisture areas, can be found in kitchen and bathroom cabinets.
•    Colonies can occupy several different nesting sites.

Pavement Ant (Tetramorium caespitum)

Appearance
•    Dark brown or blackish.
•    1/8 inch long.
•    6 legs.
•    2 spines on the back.
•    2 nodes on petiole.
•    Grooves on head and thorax.
•    Thorax uneven with 1 pair of spines.
•    12-segmented antennae with 3-segmented club.
•    Winged ants are often mistaken for termites.
Life Cycle
•    Visible spring and summer.
•    Have been known to emerge any time of the year in heated structures.
Habits
•    Feeding - eat almost anything that humans eat, and also pet food.
•    Visibility - seen entering houses looking for food, most often at night. May move through pipes and electrical wires.
•    Nesting - in lawns or under stones, wood, or boards. Mounds built along sidewalks, baseboards, and near foundations in clusters.
•    Colonies found near water