The warm, food-packed homes and businesses in London make ideal homes and hunting grounds for many species of ant, from the common black garden ant to invasive tropical species that provide a challenge for even the most experienced pest control team.
If you’ve spotted an ant in your home, simply take a photo and email it to [email protected] and we can identify it for you. This allows us to provide pre-treatment advice and arrive at your premises prepared to take on the right type of ant.
No matter what ant we identify, don’t just spray pesticides and expect a result. Because of their rapid breeding cycle and pheromone trails, killing ants has no effect on ant populations and the appearance of ants in your home or business.
Many exotic species will also respond to pesticides by spreading into multiple colonies, making the ant infestation even worse. The only long term solution is professional ant-control, and you won’t find better than Environ.
Call us now or request your call back to book your ant control appointment.
There are around 30 species of ant in the UK, but only a handful are considered pests. Most species live in the countryside or underground, but a few have found their way into our homes and businesses to feed or make nests.
If you want to control ants, the first step is knowing which species you’re dealing with.
The garden ant is what most people in the UK will think of when they hear the word “ant”. This common black ant is found just about everywhere, including our homes and businesses where they’re attracted to sweet-smelling food and drink.
Their success in urban environments is thanks to their ability to make nests in just about any crack they can find. You can often spot them emerging from beneath paving stones and between bricks, first making an appearance late March/early April.
In homes and businesses, garden ants are normally found in the kitchen, with kitchens bordering gardens more at risk. However, as ants can climb almost any surface, garden ants can be found in flats or offices many floors above ground.
Ants leave pheromone trails behind them as they search for food sources. Once they find one – such as exposed fruit, sugar of pet food – that trail can become a highway for hundreds, sometimes thousands of ants.
While garden ants may not carry disease and are considered a nuisance pest, they can pick up and spread harmful bacteria when they crawl through dirty spaces or across contaminated surfaces.
If you want garden ants to stop coming back, you need internal and external proofing to identify access points and direct extermination of any queens that have made nests within your premises. Just squashing or spraying ants as you see them will have no effect.
This small, yellow ant was originally from a tropical environment but have since spread worldwide wherever they can find warmth, and have taken a liking to our well-insulated, centrally-heated London buildings. Pharaoh ants need to be controlled quickly, effectively and carefully. Unlike most other ant species, their colonies contain multiple queens and don’t compete with one another, allowing them to spread rapidly through large buildings such as blocks of flats and hospitals, where they’re attracted to sutures. DIY attempts at ant removal only lead to further infestation as the colony splits into smaller “satellite colonies”, then replenish their populations and continue to grow. A thorough, professional site inspection and colony analysis is required before any treatment can begin. Like garden ants, pharaoh ants don’t spread disease or sting, but their ability to split and merge their colonies makes them one of the most difficult to treat nuisance pests in London. If you’ve spotted pharaoh ants, call us immediately to book your pharaoh ant control appointment.
An ant that we’ve only encountered within the last two years, carpenter ants make their nests inside wooden structures, hence their name. As they dig into wood they leave small piles of sawdust, which is the easiest way to spot a carpenter ant infestation (other than seeing the ant itself). Carpenter ants are such busy workers that you can even hear them scratching away inside wooden beams in your premises as they dig out huge networks on tunnels and voids to lay their eggs. As they both feed on wood, carpenter ants are often confused with termites. If you need help identifying which one is infesting your home, email a photo of the pest or their nests to [email protected]. These nests can easily reach sizes large enough to cause costly and dangerous structural damage. As carpenter ants prefer damp wood, their presence may indicate damp problems in your property.
Ghost ants is difficult to treat because they’re simply so hard to see in the first place. Their name refers to their tiny, pale bodies, of which only the dark head is easily visible, allowing them to set up multiple colonies while going entirely unnoticed. This tropical ant can’t survive in cold environments, but have managed to make homes in London in warm, moisture-rich sites such as kitchens, bathrooms, basements or greenhouses. Their tiny size allows them to make nests in unexpected locations such as plant pots or bookshelves. Ghost ants are often brought into the home through infested soil. Due to how difficult they are to spot and their unpredictable nesting habits, ghost ant control is best left to professionals who can enact a long term investigation and control plan.
Perhaps the biggest challenge a pest controller can face, argentine ants combine the worst traits of garden ants and pharaoh ants into one almost unstoppable force which has spread across three continents at an alarming rate. Like garden ants, argentine ants are able to make nests in a wide variety of locations, including furniture. Like pharaoh ants, their colonies contain multiple queens and don’t compete, causing them to spread even further if attacked. In fact, argentine ant colonies are just small parts of “supercolonies” that can spread across entire continents, the largest being the 6000km supercolony that stretches along the Mediterranean coast. Our argentine ant control enquiries have increased at around 10% per year, with similar trends reported elsewhere. This growing, global infestation is showing no signs of slowing down. More than any other ant, we can’t stress enough that you must not try to eliminate an argentine ant infestation yourself. Professional, long-term analysis, treatment and control is the only way you have any hope of controlling this near-unstoppable pest.
Due to how deeply they construct their nests, carpenter ants are very difficult to remove. To book professional inspection, treatment and proofing, call now or request your call back.
Call us now or request your call back to book your ant extermination appointment.
Call us now or request your call back to get in touch with our BPCA-certified pest control team, and if you’re a commercial customer or have a suspected moth infestation, you can enjoy a free, no obligation site survey.