From the country that gave us Africanized Honey Bees, Brazil has delivered another tough insect – the crazy ant. Named for its erratic trails, this ant is a force to be reckoned with in terms of sheer environmental impact. This omnivorous ant attacks and kills other species as well as monopolizes food sources.
Since its arrival in 2002 in Houston, the crazy ant has displaced fire ants in several places.
“When you talk to folks who live in the invaded areas, they tell you they want their fire ants back,” said Edward LeBrun, a researcher at the University of Texas at Austin. “Fire ants are in many ways very polite. They live in your yard. They form mounds and stay there, and they only interact with you if you step on their mound.”
Crazy ants, on the other hand, “go everywhere,” invading homes and nesting in walls and crawlspaces. They are even attracted to electrical components. In one year, they caused $146.5 million in damages in Texas alone.
The devastation occurs when one ant discovers either wiring or the transformer and gets electrocuted. It waves its abdomen in the air, emitting a certain scent. The sent lures more ants, and they too are electrocuted, sending more attractant into the air. Eventually there are so many dead ants, the electrical switches get stuck or the insulation in wiring fries and the system shuts down.
The Crazy Ant has spread through 20 counties in Texas, Florida, Mississippi, and Louisiana. Luckily, the crazy ant doesn’t spread as quickly as the fire ant, advancing only 650 feet (200 meters) per year on its own, the release noted. Therefore, it’s vital that people don’t accidentally transport the ant, the prime method by which it has spread.
Though the Crazy Ants has not made its way to California, we still have to contend with a wide variety of ant species. North American Homes Services is a family owned and operated Pest Control Company in Sacramento servicing the greater Sacramento area for over 25 years. No matter what kind of ant species, North American Home Services offers quality ant control Sacramento.