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Rosie’s Pest Control

2435 Whitten Road, Memphis TN 38133

Phone: (901) 567-3800

Fire Ant Facts

  Watch out, here come the fire ants.

  • Fire ant is the general name for quite a few species of ants in the genus Solenopsis. They are only a minority in the species, which includes over 200 species of Solenopsis worldwide. Solenopsis are stinging ants and most of their common names demonstrate this, for example, ginger ants and tropical fire ants. Many species also are called red ants because of their light brown color, though species of ants in many other genera are similarly named for similar reasons.
  • Fire ants reside in large colonies made up of up to 250,000 worker ants.
  • Fire ants are so called because of two reasons – first, they have a reddish appearance and second, they have a very painful sting.
  • A typical fire ant colony produces huge mounds in open areas, and feeds mostly on young plants and seeds. Fire ants often attack small animals and can kill them. Unlike many other ants, which bite and then spray acid on the wound, fire ants bite only to get a grip and then sting (from the abdomen) and inject a toxic alkaloid venom called Solenopsin.  For humans, this is a very painful sting, a burning sensation, similar to what one feels when burned by fire (hence the name) and the after effects of the sting (or multiple stings) can be deadly to sensitive people.  Fire ants are more aggressive than most native species and  have driven many other species away from their local habitat.
  • Need help with fire ants? Let Rosie’s Pest Control come out and provide you with a treatment plan and estimate.  Click here to have someone from Rosie’s Pest Control give you a call to set up an appointment.  Memphis area residents only at this time.

Termites Are Swarming

Background about why termites swarm.

Thousands of winged termites swarm from their nests that are underground in the spring. They have one goal: to find a mate and build a nest, and then to establish a new colony. Huge numbers of males and females are produced in underground colonies in late winter and early spring. They are placed in specific locations in the nest (near the soil surface) and remain there until the time is right to leave. They may wait for several weeks, and have to be fed and groomed by nestmates. This same scenario is played out in other colonies in the Memphis area – that’s important.

The purpose of swarming is for colonies to ‘exchange’ females and males for mating. Weather conditions are used to synchronize the release of these reproductive members of the colonies.  The termites wait for very calm winds (less than 6 mph) and overcast days that follow a spring rain.  Termites don’t want a big wind to blow away the insects before they find their mates.  Wet soil helps the new couples to build their first nest, and the extra humidity helps them to survive. Not all swarms occur outside. Sometimes the colony misjudges the release point and thousands of winged termites are released inside of your home or business. Regardless of the placement (or lack of exchange with other colonies), the pairing, shedding of wings, mating and potential founding of a new nest all proceed without a hitch.

Colonies typically produce swarms once they have reached a certain size, which is based on the total number of workers in the colony. The common colony produces swarms most every year, but the number they may release will vary.  The release usually takes a few days. There may be a large ‘first’ swarm, followed by smaller second and third swarms. Termites have a lot of swarming experience, and seem to make it work.

By | 2017-08-20T21:18:00+00:00 April 10th, 2017|Memphis Insects, Memphis Pest Control Firm, Termites|0 Comments