White Footed Ants in Florida
Facts, Identification, & Control
White Footed Ants are another ant that can be added to the list of “home bugs”. These ants are known to move their nests from outside to inside your home. Especially, inside your attic. Once inside your home, White Footed Ants begin to show up nearly everywhere. You can find them coming out of your plug-in receptacles and switch plates. White Footed Ants are well known as being heavy trailers. When forging, each ant lines up one right after another. The White Footed ant is native to tropical Asia but has been inadvertently introduced into Southwest Florida through shipping containers. The White Footed Ant was thought to have originally arrived in the Homestead area of Florida in 1986. Shortly thereafter they rapidly began spreading up and out expanding throughout the rest of Southwest Florida.
Here’s some brief identification facts that may help you identify White Footed Ants: they are black in color to the naked eye, more specifically, they are relatively small ants with a black body and yellowish-white feet, called tarsi. These ants do not bite or sting. So, these ants are not classified as biting insects in Florida. Another positive fact about White Footed Ants is that there have not been any reports of them causing any type of structural damage. They are mainly labeled as a nuisance ant that is highly attracted to sweet foods and moisture. Thus, it is common to find them foraging indoors around kitchens and bathrooms, and outside on hedges infested with honeydew producing insects, such as aphids and scales.
White Footed Ants, for many pest control companies, have been extremely difficult to control because of several characteristics of their biology. One of the biggest problems with White Footed Ants is that they establish colonies of well over a million ants, over half being worker ants. They are also known to bud off and make several “super colonies”. With each colony consisting of at least a few hundred thousand ants up to a few million.
Another reason why White Footed Ants are hard to control is because their worker ants are sterile females that are responsible for foraging for food and caring for the nest. However, these sterilize foraging female ants do not share food with the queens or the rest of the colony. This unlike most other types of ant. These sterile worker ants do, however, lay unfertilized eggs. These unfertilized eggs are the main food source for the colony and the queens. Therefore, any toxic bait to kill off ants never reach the ants in a White Foot Ant colony, and only affect the foraging sterilized female worker ants that eat the insect killing baits.
While White Footed Ants are not directly harmful to humans or pets, their presence within the home is a huge nuisance. As previously mentioned, hundreds of thousands of ants will begin to appear nearly everywhere inside your home. Certified Pest Control of Naples has developed a PROVEN 4-week White Footed Ant Control Service that will eliminate White Footed Ants from you home, property, and business.
Certified Pest Control of Naples utilizes a combination of killing baits, sterilization baits, dusts, and residual products. Our proven process includes treating areas such as but not limited to, inside your home, behind switch plates, cracks, crevices, under appliances, and attic to eliminate any activity that is being seen inside your home. Then we will treat the immediate sides of your home with special insect killing materials to kill any trailing White Foot Ant attempting to enter your home. The third stage of this treatment method is to use special insect killing materials up to 30 or 40 feet around your home, killing off all activity trailing toward your home. Certified Pest Control of Naples will follow up with a service treatment each week for 3 more weeks ensuring that no more White Foot Ants will re-infest your home. Have you seen black ants trailing heavily on the exterior of your home or business?