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Fire Ants of the Carolinas

Get Rid of Fire Ant Infestations

Croach® pest control helps homeowners across Charlotte, Columbia, and Greenville get rid of fire ants. This invasive species is known for its painful and sometimes dangerous sting, and its tendency to form large, aggressive, and unsightly colonies.

Red imported fire ants were first discovered in North Carolina in 1952, and in South Carolina in the 1960's. They are now found in all counties throughout both states.

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Fire Ants - What they Look Like - Columbia, NC - Croach Pest Control

How to Get Rid of Fire Ants

Fire ants are capable of foraging more than 100 yards away from a mound in search of food sources. And they may be coming from more than one colony. Therefore, conventional ant treatments are nearly impossible.

Control of fire ants is also challenging because they are highly adaptable and can quickly reestablish their populations.

Croach® Pest Control technicians may use several methods to get rid of them, including bait stations, broadcast treatments, and individual mound treatments.

Treating the Mound

One best practice for killing fire ants is to treat the mounds with a commercial insecticide applied by a licensed ant exterminator.

This particular product is low in toxicity and represents minimal risks to pets, children, or those sensitive to other more toxic treatments.

Technology has not yet been developed to get rid of these insects permanently. And they have few natural enemies in the Carolinas to help control the population.

But you can manage them in your yard successfully. Regular treatments are recommended to ensure acceptable levels for fire ant control.

Your Croach® pest technician will assess the needs of your property and help determine the best course of action.

Croach Pest Control Reviews - Stars 150

No Issues Since They Began

They do an amazing job every time they come out. They treat the outside so well, they never have to come into the garage or house. I have not had any issues since they began, and the ants after a storm were taken care of quickly and effectively. I would recommend them to everyone!

Toni B. - West Columbia, SC

Fire Ant Bites or Stings

When a nest is disturbed, hundreds of worker ants can attack at the same time.

A fire ant bite is actually a sting, not a bite. They grab with their jaws and sting with their back stinger. Their stings contain venom that can cause a painful, burning sensation, as well as swelling, redness, and itching.

In some people, fire ant stings can also cause symptoms such as difficulty breathing, hives, and even anaphylaxis. They can pose a threat to humans, particularly to children and people with allergies.

The wound may form a blister, and then a white pustule a day or two later. Do not itch or scratch at the pustule as it will take longer to heal and may lead to a secondary infection that's worse than the sting itself.

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Fire Ants - How to Get Rid of Them - Croach Pest Control 600

What if a Fire Ant Bites?

The South Carolina Department of Health states that 1 person out of 200 is seriously allergic to these stinging insects (as well as the stings of bees, wasps, and yellow jackets).

Treatment for a Fire Ant Sting

If stung, it is important to wash the affected area with soap and water and apply a cool compress.

If you experience a severe reaction with symptoms like difficulty breathing, rapid heart rate, or dizziness, seek medical attention right away as these could be signs of anaphylaxis, a severe and potentially life-threatening reaction.

The SCDHEC offers more guidance on how to treat stings.

North and South Carolina Fire Ant Behavior

Fire ants are known to be highly aggressive and will defend their nests fiercely. They have a well-organized social structure, with one or more queens, workers, and male drones.

A nest can contain hundreds of thousands of individuals all working to protect the queen and the nest.

What Do They Eat?

They are omnivorous, feeding on a variety of foods, including other insects, seeds, and sugary substances. They are also known to eat the buds and fruits of several food crops including corn, okra, soybeans, and citrus.

Do They Cause Damage?

They are capable of causing significant damage to crops and other vegetation, as well as to wildlife.

Uncontrolled nests will continue to expand, and the tunnels can get large enough to cause the ground to become unstable.

In the United States, these insects are estimated to cause over $6 billion in damages and control costs annually. This includes structural damage caused by excessive tunneling. Fire ants also infiltrate electrical systems like computers, appliances, and air conditioners.

Fire Ants Extermination and Control in the Carolinas

Take preventative measures to protect yourself when fire ant mounds are in your yard. Be cautious when walking near their nests because, if they see you as a threat, they will attack.

  • Learn how to identify fire ants and their mounds. Many brown ant species look similar.
  • Wear long pants and closed-toed shoes.
  • Use gloves when doing gardening or yard work.
  • Fire ants prefer oily or greasy foods. Avoid spills, crumbs, and other temptations in the kitchen and near the outdoor trash.
  • Cut landscaping away from your home so leaves and branches can't be used as a 'bridge' indoors.

If you are experiencing a fire ant infestation near Columbia, Greenville, or Charlotte, call Croach for a free inspection and we will assess the situation, map out a treatment plan, and get to work so you can spend your summer enjoying your back yard.

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