April 27, 2017
We know you're tough. You're not afraid of a few bugs. If you see a fly, you swat it. If you see a spider, you squish it with a paper towel. If you see a wasps' nest developing, you brush it away with a broom. Bugs are no big deal, right? Well, you may want to think twice about shrugging off flying ants.
The first thing you should know--and you probably already do--is that flying ants are not a "species" of ant. Flying ants are a "type" of ant that is produced from carpenter ant colonies. More than this, flying ants are a warning sign.
What? A warning sign?
Yes. Flying ants are produced by a mature nest for the purpose of creating more nests. When you see flying ants on your exterior walls, it is important that you understand what is occurring. Those flying ants are male and female alates. Their sole purpose is to mate and start a new nest. But, that is not the worst news. Those flying ants may not be ants at all.
Not ants? Yup. They could be termites. Mature termite nests also produce swarmers for the purpose of starting new nests. If you have tiny black insects with long white wings crawling all over the exterior walls of your home, you could be in trouble.
What You Should Know Most About Termite Swarms
Swarmers don't travel very far and they don't swarm for very long. They mate quickly and then crawl into their new homes to develop their new nests. Here are two things you should understand about this process:
If you're seeing termite swarmers on your walls, window panes, or window sills, there is a good chance you have a mature ant colony of termites on your property.
Sometimes you won't see termite swarmers at all. Since they develop and disperse quickly, you may only see the wings they leave behind after they mate. If you find wings on your window sills you should definitely take notice.
It is never a good idea to let a termite sighting go unchecked. Termites cost U.S. property owners over $5 billion annually. If left untreated, they can do a lot of damage. But, sadly, many people find these "flying ants" on their windows and simply vacuum them up, not realizing that those winged insects are warning them of a threat.
Why do people ignore swarmers?
There are a lot of bugs in this buggy world of ours. We see them all the time. And, most people are like you, they're tough. They're not going to let a few bugs ruin their day. But you should never treat flying ants lightly.
If they are actually ants, they are most likely carpenter ants, which are another wood-destroying pest that should be treated if you want to protect the equity you have in your home. If they are termites, you may be able to stop them before they do serious damage. In cases where a nearby tree or stump is infested with termites and the infestation begins to move to the house, a sighting of termite swarmers can alert a homeowner to the threat before damage is done.
It is best to have ongoing termite protection for your property. Don't wait till you see swarmers. Subterranean termites travel as far as the distance of a football field in search of a food source, and they can come up from the ground and feed on a home for years without leaving a single sign of their presence. Often, swarmers are never seen.
At Spencer Pest Services, we use the award-winning and scientifically proven Sentricon® System with Always Active™
We use this system to not only arrest termite infestation "before" damage occurs, but to strike back at the colonies that sent them--eliminating the problem even as it appears. This is a system that has had over 30 university studies, published in 45 scientific articles, and over 15 years of real-world success. There is simply no better way to protect your property, and your investment, than the Sentricon® with Always Active™.
We know you're tough. You're not afraid of bugs. But, when flying ants start appearing on your walls...be concerned. Those may not be ants at all.