How Dangerous Are Fire Ants In Salt Lake City?

Ants crawling on cup

Have you ever been resting outdoors somewhere and all of a sudden, out of the corner of your eye, you spot a swarm of fiery red ants that seemingly came out of nowhere? You probably have and if that’s the case, then you’ve encountered fire ants. If you’ve been stung by one, then you know they’re fire ants. 

Fire ants are a petite species of ants, measuring only ⅛ to ⅜ inch, making them nearly impossible to spot unless they’re part of an infestation. They are dark red to reddish-brown in coloring and have six legs and a pair of antennae; however, the easiest way to identify them is by their coloring. 

Fire ants, also known as red imported fire ants, are not native to North America and can actually displace other native ant colonies. You can spot them in Salt Lake City due to the large mounds that they build, which are irregular in size and usually measure one to two square feet in size. Typically, they build their nests in the soil that surrounds any structures on your property (i.e. your home) or inside landscaping. 

The Dangers Of Fire Ants

Fire ants are known for their painful “bites,” in which they first bite their victim to attach to their skin and then sting them repeatedly, which is said to feel like fire. It should be noted that:

  • Fire ants will sting anyone who they perceive as a threat to their nest.

  • Stings start off as raised welts and then grow into a white pustule.

  • Stepping on the mound is even worse, as fire ants do tend to attack in swarms.

    Fire ant stings can prove especially dangerous for people who have preexisting allergies. Some exacerbated allergic reactions may appear as nausea, dizziness, and difficulty breathing.

  • More often than not, you will receive multiple stings from fire ants, rather than a singular one. Each individual ant can sting a person multiple times.

  • To know if you’ve been stung by a fire ant, look for clusters of swollen red spots that will eventually grow into blisters at the top. You will also know if you’ve been stung by a fire ant because the stings prove itchy and painful, and will last up to a week.

What Attracts Fire Ants To Your Property And How To Eliminate Them

Seeing as fire ants prove to be dangerous when provoked, you should aim to prevent any fire ants that may be present on your Salt Lake City property. Some of the factors that may be attracting fire ants to your property include:

  • Cracks in your foundation. Like many pests, fire ants gain entry to your home through vulnerable spots in your home’s foundation and walls.

  • Since fire ants are so tiny, they can get through any cracks and holes with the greatest of ease. Be sure to fill any holes — big or small — in your home and/or garage thoroughly.

  • Lack of cleanliness. Because fire ants are always searching for food, ensuring that your kitchen is kept tidy is a must. Store food in airtight containers, clean counters and floors regularly and thoroughly, and take care of any spills in a timely manner.

  • Moisture issues. Again, like many nuisance pests, fire ants crave moisture and also need it to lay their eggs. Salt Lake City homeowners should be sure to check faucets and drains regularly for any leaks and make any repairs as needed.

The safest and most effective way to rid your Salt Lake City home from fire ants is always going to be with professional assistance from Pest Pro Pest Control. 

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