The Pharaoh Ant whilst originally known as a tropical ant will survive in centrally heated locations in temperate regions. Pharaoh ants are social insects and live in colonies. The colonies can range in size from a few dozen to 300,000 ants.
The Pharaoh ant colour ranges from a light yellow through to darkish brown, with the worker ants being approximately 2 millimetres in size. The queens are larger, approximately 4 mm long and are slightly darker than the workers. The males, whilst being the same size as the workers, are slightly darker in appearance.
One of the most significant facts regarding the Pharaoh ant is that the colonies will have several queens and several nests. This can make treating an infestation of Pharaoh ant an extremely lengthy process. Each Queen lays in the region of 300 – 350 eggs during her egg-laying spell with the eggs hatching in about a week. The Pharaoh ant colony consists of queens, males, workers and immature stages i.e. eggs, larvae, pre-pupae, and pupae.
Unfortunately, due to the multi-nesting behaviour of the Pharaoh Ant, it would be reasonable to expect that if one area of a building is infested there is every likelihood of extensive spread throughout the building. These extremely small ants will travel using electrical wires and plumbing pipes, travelling from room to room and building to building.
This particular ant likes to feed on fruit, jam, sugar, meat etc. The ants tend to move travelling in formation lines as if in a convoy. They may be noticed marching in a line along the tops of tiles, and the sides and top surfaces of doorframes. They tend to nest in strange places, such as piles of rubbish, layers of bed linen and clothes or between sheets of stationary.
Unfortunately, when Pharaoh ants feels threatened in any way they can in turn expand their population by “budding.” In other words by leaving the nest, the queen and accompanying workers move on to seek out a new site in order to form another colony. Therefore, in order to get rid of an infestation of Pharaoh ants baiting is the best method. However, obviously, this is a lengthy process and during this process the use of insecticides of any nature whatsoever to treat other types of infestation has to be avoided. Insecticide sprays will only make the situation worse and cause the ants as mentioned to disperse and set up new colonies.
The Photograph Below Clearly Shows The Trail of Pharaoh Ants Across These Kitchen Tiles
It is extremely important that all areas should be kept clean from spills and food debris and in kitchens that both the food prep areas and floors should be kept clear of food particles. In addition, waste bins should be emptied on a regular basis and tight fitting waste bin lids are advisable.
Whilst the Pharaoh ant does not bite, it does unfortunately affect humans in other ways. The Pharaoh ant is a carrier and can transmit such diseases as Salmonella, Staphylococcus and Clostridium, which can cause Botulism.
To bring an infestation of Pharaoh ants under control can take many months and up to a year depending on the extent of the infestation. As mentioned, this particular ant should not be treated with insecticides and it is always advisable to contact a professional pest prevention company.
If you believe you have a Pharaoh ant infestation, or require assistance with any pest prevention issues, please contact NPC Pest Prevention Solutions. NPC provide free professional surveys and quotations:-
Nottinghamshire 0115 9872968
Derbyshire 0845 0754866
Leicestershire 0116 2867210
National 0115 9872968