There are some pests that look quite similar, like winged carpenter ants and swarming termites, but can cause different types of destruction to your property. It is important to identify the type of pest as there are different treatment methods for specific pests. When taking a closer look at ants and termites, there are some distinguishing traits to determine the type of pest infestation. Termites have broad waists, straight antennas, and wings of equal size while ants have narrow waists, bent antennas, and have larger front wings.
What Attracts Termites and Ants?
Ants are attracted to moisture, food, and warmth. They are usually found around leaky sinks, refrigeration appliances, kitchen trash, and behind showers. Even things like the warmth from cooking appliances and dishes piled up in the sink for long periods of time is inviting to ants and other pests. Termites are attracted to moisture as well as darkness. Places like secluded spots of the property, such as basements and attics, are attractive to pests like termites.
Termite and Ant Entry Points
Ants can make their way into a building through various pathways. They will take any opportunity like holes in window or door screens and even use utility connections that provide a pathway into the building. Once inside they will begin to hide behind baseboards, under floors and use wires within walls to travel from room to room. Termites find their way in through cracks and crevices in the building’s foundation. Certain types of termites will also infest places like attics and framework. They are usually transported by items like furniture and picture frames so be sure to thoroughly check any wooden items before bringing them inside!
Signs of Destruction From Termites and Ants
There are distinguishing traits between termites and ants when looking for signs of an infestation. Termites will make any wooden materials they have tunneled through sound hollow or have blisters. There can also be discarded wings near doors or windows from termites looking to establish a new nest. On the other hand, ants will leave little holes in wooden materials and leave small piles of shavings resembling sawdust. Other signs of ants would be a rustling sound in the walls as well as a noticeable trail leading to and from a food source. Both termites and ants have signs of their presence in lawns as well. Ants damage landscaping and lawns by impacting grass growth and causing bare spots around their nests. While termites will create mud tubes from the soil to a wood source which protects them as they travel.
Prevention Tactics Against Termites and Ants
Despite the differences in the distinguishing traits between termites and ants, the prevention tactics for both pests are quite similar. Start by checking each season and sealing every crack no matter how small, from the foundation and walls to all the doors and windows. Establish a routine sweeping or vacuuming schedule, from high traffic areas that could provide a food source like living rooms to rarely used rooms that can provide shelter like basements and attics. In regards to lawn care, it is recommended to maintain a 1 inch gap between any wooden materials of the building and the soil. Also, keeping tree branches and plants cut away from the building will prevent pests from using them to gain access. Be sure to never bury wood scraps or lumber in the yard and store firewood away from the building. Another way to prevent the destruction of(from) termites and ants is to consider using plastic bins rather than cardboard boxes and keep all stored food in tightly sealed containers.
Termite and Ant Expert Care
Don’t forget to schedule annual professional inspections as well! An infestation can grow quickly and go for long periods of time undetected. This can lead to significant damage without the owner realizing unwanted tenants have made themselves at home. Some pests have the ability to easily reproduce so their population quickly comes back after being eliminated, which makes them difficult to remove without professional help. For scheduling an inspection or extermination, Bug-A-Way Pest Control offers a range of solutions to take back control of your property. If you want to learn more about Bug-A-Way or have questions about treatments, visit us at our website at BugAWayPC.com.