Like Argentine ants, red imported fire ants were also introduced into the United States by accident. Entering through Mobile, Alabama, these invasive ants have gone on to infest millions of acres.
What do red imported fire ants look like?
Red imported fire ants are dark reddish-brown in color but what makes their behavior is often what identifies them. These ants are aggressive when their nests are disturbed. They are often observed climbing and stinging anything touching their mound.
Quick red imported fire ant facts
Accidentally introduced in Alabama in the 1930s
Are a prevalent ant problem in South Carolina
Are aggressive ants that will attack anything that provokes them
RIFA stings may produce a burning and itching sensation, possibly blistering, and could produce an allergic reaction in some
Red imported fire ant habits and behaviors
Red imported fire ants are easily agitated.
Red imported fire ants prefer to build mounds in open sunny areas but may nest in rotting logs and stumps.
According to Clemson University, homeowners spend $3-5M/year for red imported fire ant control and 68% of homeowners feel that the pest problem is getting worse.
Are red imported fire ants dangerous?
If you have kids that play in the yard, spend a fair amount of time outdoors, or have pets that roam your property, an infestation of red imported fire ants could be troublesome. This type of ant tends to sting victims in groups and may sting repeatedly. While a sting may cause discomfort in some, those prone to an allergic reaction may need medical attention. These ants also damage plants, lawns, and even electrical fixtures on the exterior of structures.