Chicago Property Owners' Complete Guide To Pharaoh Ant Control

Pharoah ants on food
Once believed to be a biblical plague in Egypt, pharaoh ants now plague homes and businesses all over the United States. These ants may not cause much structural damage, and their bites are little more than irritating, but an infestation in your Chicago home would be more dangerous than you may think. Thankfully, there are ways to keep them out, and we know all the tricks to keep your home safe from these tiny intruders.

The Great Empire Of Pharaoh Ants: Appearance And Habits

Pharaoh ants are a fairly small species, only measuring up to 1/16 of an inch in length. They're most often pale or reddish yellow, with abdomens much darker than the rest of their bodies. This species is much more different from most, as they don't produce reproductive winged ants to create new colonies; rather, they often have multiple queens in a single nest, and they create new colonies by budding off from the original nest.

Colonies often range well into the thousands, and some more advanced colonies can reach up to 300,000 in numbers with roughly 200 queens. Their sheer size may be impressive, but their prolific nature can spell serious trouble for Chicago homeowners. Not only that, but they also eat a lot of the same foods that humans enjoy, causing severe food contamination:

  • Fats, oils, and fatty foods
  • Grains and cereal
  • Baked goods
  • Sweets, sugars, and sugary drinks
  • Proteins

The Dangers Of Pharaoh Ants, And Why They Invade Chicago Homes

While it's true that pharaoh ants won't destroy your home, and their bites aren't harmful enough to cause any serious reactions, these pests are still capable of contaminating foods and surfaces with some pretty terrible pathogens. They're often found in hospitals and nursing homes and have been known to crawl into IV tubes and open wounds, infecting patients with ailments such as:

  • Salmonella
  • Staphylococcus
  • Clostridium
  • Streptococcus
  • Various types of fungus

Many infestations are due to improper food storage, and crumbs and food residue left around a home. Other infestations can be attributed to excessive moisture in and around Chicago properties as well, which can lead to worse problems on their own. Most times, this moisture is relatively harmless and is more often seen around sinks, bathtubs, and washing machines; though it could also be caused by leaky pipes, damaged shingles, or poorly draining soil and turf.

Preventing A Pharaoh Ant Infestation In Your Chicago Home

Once you know what attracts these pests, and how they manage to get inside, it's relatively simple to keep them out. Granted, no precautionary measure is completely fool-proof, especially with such small pests, but taking action against possible infestations still minimizes the risk:

  • Store dried foods in airtight containers
  • Wipe down food prep surfaces daily, and clean up any spills immediately after they occur
  • Sweep, mop, and vacuum regularly
  • Ensure there aren't any leaks in your roof and pipes, and repair as necessary
  • Invest in a dehumidifier for moisture-retaining rooms; bathroom, kitchen, laundry room, basement
  • Replace any worn-down insulation around doors and windows
  • Fill in any cracks and holes in the exterior of your home; siding, foundation, exposed wood, roof, trim, around pipes and wires

How To Cast The Pharaohs Out Of Your Chicago Home

Ants can be incredibly tricky to remove once they've settled into your Chicago home, and especially so for pharaoh ants. Store-bought pesticides are largely ineffective, and often contain harmful chemicals for both humans and the ecosystem. Not only that but as this species houses multiple queens, any unsuccessful attempt to eradicate a nest will force them to branch out, creating an even bigger and more daunting infestation. If you have pharaohs threatening to overthrow the hierarchy of your home, you might want to call in the professionals instead.

If you're looking for affordable pest control, then Aerex Pest Control has you covered. We've been in business for over 70 years, and we're happy to show you why our thousands of customers won't stop raving about us. We only use pest control products that are registered by the Environmental Protection Agency, and we back all of our treatments with our pest-free guarantee. So get in contact with us today, and send those pharaohs packing.

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