Georgia and South Carolina are home to roughly 10 unique species of ants that are problematic for homeowners, but few command as much attention and grief as the malignant fire ant.

Known for their painful sting, large red dirt mounds, and fierce determination, fire ants can become one of the most aggravating pests in the Southeast. In addition to yard intrusion, fire ants can occupy gardens, structural foundations, sidewalks, and pavement driveways. And once established, fire ants can wreak havoc and pose a substantial threat to ecosystems, pets, and children.

Spring is almost over, and Summer is rapidly approaching. Fire ants are on the move!

Know your enemy: How do fire ants behave?

Fire ants may seem like simple insects, but their complex social structure and determination make them one of the most daunting forces to be reckoned with.

Each fire ant colony has a queen, responsible for the reproduction and the behavior of her workers. Queens elicit pheromones, a chemical that helps her communicate with the rest of her brood. In some cases, a fire ant colony may contain more than one queen.

Did you know? Fire ant “workers” only live for about 4-6 weeks, but a colony’s matriarch (the queen) can live up to seven years or more.

Fire ant mounds may look like simple piles of dirt, but fire ants are master architects. Beneath each mound is an intricate labyrinth of tunnels and chambers. Fire ants sculpt different areas for passage, storage, lodging their young, and safeguarding valuables. Colonies vary in size, but the average population can reach 200,000 or more!

fire ant mound on driveway
fire ant mound close up view

Hiring pest management professionals: Why Do It Yourself (DIY) isn’t enough

When face to face with a fire ant invasion, many homeowners may address the problem themselves, often purchasing off-the-counter sprays, baits, and a variety of generic pesticides. While these efforts may provide temporary relief for small fire ant problems, homeowners typically forget to address the critical underlying issue: overthrowing the queen.

Did you know? Queens only mate several times during their lifespan. They utilize stored sperm to reproduce each day, and they never leave their mound.

The queen is the lifeblood of her society. Once mature, queens can lay up to 800 eggs per day, which means she could lay roughly 2 million eggs in her lifetime. And several members of her brood will eventually become queens and form new colonies elsewhere in your yard. If you can’t overthrow the queen, your problem may only escalate.

With fire ant control services, pest control technicians can introduce a multitude of tactics, pesticides, baits, and growth regulators to target the queen and her swarm. These professionals can analyze your yard, identify susceptible soil areas, and after treatment, can help further prevent an infestation.

Fire Ant Control Services

Three reasons why you should choose Compass Pest Management to tackle your fire ant problem:

1. A Compass technician will not only treat each individual mound, but also the entire yard. Fire ant workers typically forage between 10-15 feet from their nest, which means they also scavenge on seemingly inactive soil areas.

2. Compass understands fire ants. Spraying mounds with store-bought pesticides may only agitate or temporarily delay colony growth. Compass implements tried-and-true methods, namely baits and growth regulators, to ensure the fire ant queen and her horde are targeted.

3. Compass guarantees a fire ant-free yard all season long! If fire ants resurface post treatment, a technician will readdress the problem at no cost to the customer. Agreements last for one year, and treatments are at 6-month intervals. At Compass, you’re not just paying for one treatment, but also for year-round protection!

Fire ants pose a painful threat, especially for those allergic to their venomous sting. Compass will help you reclaim your turf against fire ants and ensure that your yard is safe for gardens, pets and other animals, and most importantly, your family.

Whether you’re facing an up-hill battle with fire ants, noticing minor activity, or you want to prevent an invasion, Compass Pest Management will stand between your family and the horde of invasive fire ants.