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Ants

ANT CONTROL

NZ Pest Control, offers ant pest control treatments, for Auckland homes, and commercial premises.

What is an ant?

Ants are social insects belonging to the order of insects known as “Hymenoptera” – the same order ants__-_logo.jpgcontaining bees and wasps. Social insects, such as ants, live in large communities where they depend upon each other for the survival of the entire colony. Ant colonies generally form underground nests comprised of chambers and interconnecting tunnels where ants store food, lay eggs and maintain nurseries. There can be tens of thousands of ants in a single colony and several colonies inhabiting the soil or landscape surrounding a property. For that very reason, ants can be a particularly difficult pest to eradicate. Although an estimated 14,000 ant species populate the earth, in New Zealand, there are only a handful that are  known to invade homes and buildings, including:

  • The black house ant

  • The coastal brown ant
  • The white footed house ant
  • The argentine ant

Why do I have them?

All ants share one primary task: to protect and care for the colony. In order to accomplish this, ants require food, moisture and shelter. A colony of ants may range from a few dozen to tens of thousands. Ant nests are commonly found outside under wood piles, flagstone or brick patios and under rocks and garden stones. Ants in the house may nest in wall voids, behind insulation, or in or around wood previously damaged by moisture. You are most likely to find ants in the kitchen or invading your property elsewhere when they are foraging for food. Foraging ants account for only a small percentage (typically 10% or less) of the colony’s size and it is important to understand that ants will travel extremely long distances in search of food or harborage. Once these foragers locate and establish a source of food, ants will produce a scent trail (by way of pheromones) leading to and from the nest. This pheromone trail provides direction for the ants to follow between the nest and food source. This is why you will often see ants like the odorous house ant, marching back and forth along one line with little or no deviation.

Are they dangerous?

In New Zealand, most ant species fall into the category of nuisance pests. Argentine ants however, do pose a series threat. Originally established in Auckland in 1990, they are now a problem in an increasing number of towns and cities throughout New Zealand. From one urban area to another, Argentine ants hitch rides in freight, potted plants, rubbish, vehicles and other such goods. Social impacts that have been noted by council staff, pest controllers and scientists in New Zealand include:

  1. Argentine ants being an extreme domestic nuisance pest within houses, getting into cupboards, sealed jars, electrical areas, behind walls, and beds.

  2. People being unable to garden, hold social events, or let their children play in household backyards because of aggressive swarming and in some cases being bitten. We are also aware of people selling their houses and moving away from the infested areas in the Coromandel and Nelson, and caged pets such as birds and lizards, being killed in the Bay of Plenty and Northland.

The World Conservation Union lists the Argentine ant as one of the world´s worst invasive species.

How do I get rid of ants?

Ants can be a particularly difficult pest to eradicate due to the nature of their foraging habits and colony development. Because only a small percentage of ants within a colony are actively foraging for food, it is vitally important to inspect and locate where the ants are coming from. It is entirely possible for ants to be foraging long distances and the nest may not be located within property boundaries. That is why it is important that, NZ Pest Control professionals are called in to provide a thorough inspection. For optimal results, NZ Pest Control recommends a quarterly pest control service, to effectively prevent ant infestations.

Can I do it myself?

Do-it-yourself methods of ant control are not often successful. Many over-the-counter pesticide products for consumer purchase are not an adequate means to control ant colonies because they are not customized or suited to treat the particular species of ant you are having a problem with. NZ Pest Control professionals, are trained to seek out foraging ant trails around your property, in an effort to locate and eradicate the entire colony.

How soon can you get here?

At NZ Pest Control, we strive to give our customers a rapid, efficient service, and make every effort to be with you as soon as possible.

Is the treatment safe?

All products used by NZ Pest Control, must have first been thoroughly checked by the EPA and registered for pest control use. Only then can they be considered for use by our highly trained pest control professionals. You can be assured, that pest control services provided by NZ Pest Control, will not cause any harm to humans or pets.

How can I prevent ants returning in the future?

Preventing ants can be a very difficult task due to the way in which they can enter your property. Should your property become inhabited by ants, your first call should be to NZ Pest Control. We are committed to improving the quality of life for all of our customers, by providing the safest and most effective treatment, for the management of pests which pose a threat to their health, property and food supply.

 

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