Flying Ants: Whats it all about?
In the summer along with the sun and warmer weather comes far more insect pests. One that is very common and worries people a lot is Ants, accompanied by their brothers and sisters the Flying Ants. Contrary to popular belief flying Ants are NOT a different species. They are from the same colony as the crawling wingless ants but it’s these Ants that have been specially chosen by the colony queen to become King and Queen (potential) Ants themselves.
Swarms of winged Ants will descend on the country usually in early to mid-July each year as the flying King and Queen ants take flight in search of a mate. There is even one day a year in the UK when the temperature, humidity and wind conditions are just right that is called ”Flying Ant Day”. This is when the billions of winged ants swarm together to confuse predators and find a mate to create new colonies. Once mated the King Ants quickly die whilst the Queens will fly off to start colonies of their own.
Why Do They Invade My Home?!
Flying Ants invade your home through small cracks and crevices with some ant species posing a significant risk to your property such as carpenter Ants. It could be that the colony is situated below your property and when the flying ants are ready to take their nuptial flight to find a mate, they work there way towards the daylight through the cracks which could possibly lead to the inside of your home. This is why you see most flying insects near the windows. It is the natural UV light that draws them there.
How Do I Prevent Flying Ants
Seal cracks and crevices
Sealing cracks and crevices around your property to reduce the entry points for flying ants. Look for gaps around external brickwork, internal cracks around skirting boards, under kitchen units, below floor beading, between floorboards or anywhere else you may see one.
Keeping Windows and Doors Closed
Keeping windows and doors shut is one of the most effective methods of preventing flying insects, and flying ants, reducing the ways in which they can enter your home or business.
Install a Fly Screen
Sometimes keeping windows and doors shut during the summer months isn’t ideal due to the high temperatures. Installing a fly screen will prevent flying ants from entering your home whilst leaving windows and doors open.
You can buy Ant powders and insecticide gels online or from certain high street shops. Remember that using powders will likely only eradicate the wingless crawling workers. Using gels that the workers take back to feed the colony and then hopefully the queen is the best way to eradicate a nest fully. This process will have to be done soon enough before the winged ants are reared to prevent any invasion.
Aerosols are effective to give a quick knock down of the flying ants that are visible, however this method is unlikely to prevent more from coming. Without eradicating the Queen early before the insects swarm it can be difficult.
Professional Ant Control
The most effective solution against flying ants is enlisting the support of a professional pest control company to identify and control an ant problem. Flying ants mean the start of a new colony. Getting rid will limit the possibility of future ant problems as well as eradicating an existing one.