Ants are busy all year in tropical climates. In cooler climates, they maintain during cold weather by going into a state of dormancy or inactivity called diapause. You can find ants Inside a home nesting behind baseboards, moldings, and countertops, even inside walls.
Ants are small insects, measuring 1-30mm long, and usually live in a colony with at least one breeding queen. All ants have bent antennas and chewing mouthparts, but only fertile adults have wings.
Ants live in colonies where one or a few females, called queens, lay all the eggs. Most of the queens' offspring grow up to be worker ants that do not reproduce. A select few are males, while some become new queens. Naturally, a queen ant can lay thousands of eggs each year.
The lifespan of ants depends on the role. Males are here for just a few weeks and die after mating. Females generally live for several months. Queens are known to live for decades if circumstances allow it. Odorous house ant workers tend to live around two to three years, while fire ant workers live only around five weeks.
Ants are really attracted to the aroma of sugar and grease, but eat a large range of foods, from engine oil to other ant species. Majority of ant species are omnivorous and eat seeds, nectar, and other creatures lacking a back bone.
Can an ant infestation be a cause of concern? Well, black or garden ants don't bite or host disease. However, ants coming into your home may have marched through filthy places and could taint any uncovered food.
This is thought to be true since they can carry bacteria and might transfer them to food or an exposed injury.
Types of ants: Acrobat ant, Allegheny Ant, Argentine Ant, Big-Headed Ant, Carpenter Ant, Citronella Ant, Crazy Ant, Field Ant, Fire Ant, Ghost Ant, Harvester Ant, Little Black Ant, Moisture Ant, Odorous House Ant, Pavement Ant, Pharaoh Ant, Texas Leaf Cutter Ant, Thief Ant, Velvety Tree Ant, and White Footed Ant
Common ants in North Texas:
• Odorous house ants are dark brown or black bodies with one node on their petiole, an unevenly formed thorax when viewed from the side, and smell like rotten coconut when crushed.
• Carpenter ants, aka "workers" are black, or red and black and vary in size from 3/8 to ½ inch. Queen ants can grow to one inch. They overrun and damage wooden buildings and structures.
• Fire ants are medium-sized red and black and build mounds out of soft soil. Their bites that feels like a bee sting. In addition, their bite can be lethal to individuals who are allergic.
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