July 31, 2017
Why Do They Call Them Crazy Ants?
Crazy ants! Is that a title or a name? It seems a bit rude to call this species of ant ‘crazy’; but this is what we call them. Have you ever wondered why? What is it about this particular species of invasive ant that originated from Africa and invaded our country sometime before 2002 that caused them to be forever known as ‘crazy’?
After all, ants are ants, right? I mean those little segmented bodies of varying sizes are something that we are quite used to. So what is so different about these little bitty ants? I mean, they seem like regular ants. Small, red, brown, or gray segmented ants! Tiny, in fact! 1/16 to 1/8 of an inch! Two antennae and tiny little legs, they seem to look like a typical ant; so their name can’t possibly come from the way they look!
So, where exactly did crazy ants get their name? The answer lies in their behavior. These ants tend to run to and fro, back and forth, in a very erratic and jerking manner. They seem to be so frantic that they don’t know where they are going or why they are going there. They seem to be totally nonsensical with no purpose whatsoever for their movement. They really are quite bizarre to watch.
But, their weird behavior doesn’t stop there. Crazy ants are attracted, not so much to sweets or starches, but to electricity. That’s right, electricity! They will infest televisions, gaming systems, stereo equipment, and machinery of all sorts; and when they invade, it is by the hundreds or perhaps more! These creatures are precocious and stop at nothing to get to wherever they think they want to go. They crawl over piles of dead ant bodies, and they will even crawl all over you with no care at all that they are bothering you or that you might just squish them. Nothing seems to stop these pests from their insane quest.
The trouble is that when these ants infest, they do so in such large numbers that it can cause the electronics they invade to short out; and these items can be costly to replace! Recent studies have also shown that crazy ants are capable of spreading pathogens when they invade hospitals, but they are not known to be vectors for any diseases of their own. They can, however, contaminate food sources.
Crazy ants are also a danger to ground-nesting animals, livestock, and poultry. Not only do they crawl into the eyes and ears of other animals, but they can actually suffocate small animals by crawling into their orifices in large numbers, blocking airflow. Crazy ants will also displace native ant colonies.
If you notice small, erratic ants on your property, be sure to call in a professional right away. Crazy ant colonies have numerous queens and can reproduce very rapidly. You may be able to kill a lot of the worker ants, but you will soon see thousands crawling over those dead bodies. It takes a professional pest control technician to know where these ants are nesting and to completely eradicate the colony. Aiken Pest has the tools, technology, and training to quickly identify crazy ants and get to their source; and our year-round residential pest control plans can help to keep crazy ants at bay all year long. To learn more about the effective crazy ant control services offered by Aiken Pest, simply contact us today.