crazy ants invade southeast u.s.
by Michael dEstries
Categories: Causes, Environment.
Photo: Creative Commons

If the thought of meningitis-carrying, home-eating, giant land snails or mosquitoes the size of quarters isn’t enough to make you reconsider leaving Florida – perhaps a creature known as the “crazy ant” will help strengthen the argument.

As you would expect, crazy ants are an invasive species generally found in northern Argentina and southern Brazil, but unfortunately are now increasingly making their homes throughout the Southeastern United States.

Why are they a problem? 

Crazy ants are so-named because their nesting habits make them very, very difficult to eliminate. Basically, if you discover them inside your home, prepare to have an issue on your hands that even the most experienced exterminator will have difficulty solving. This is because, unlike other ant species, crazy ants have multiples queens (clever) and are not attracted to traditional ant baits or over-the-counter pesticides.

While they do not have the same fierce sting as the badass fire ant (which crazy ants, interestingly, feed on), they do love chewing through insulation and – for some reason yet unknown – are attracted to electrical equipment. Hence, there are many shorts reported as a result of crazy ants in homes.

What’s being done to control them?

Unfortunately, there’s no one-shot method of protecting your home from the crazies. Once they’re in there, you’re going to need a professional – an even then, expect to deal with possible resurgences in populations due to the many-queens feature. Also – another total bummer – crazy ants as of yet do not have any natural predators in the South.

Can you point me to an overly-dramatic video featuring a overly-dramatic narration that talks more about the crazy ants? 

You’re welcome.

About Michael dEstries

Michael has been blogging since 2005 on issues such as sustainability, renewable energy, philanthropy, and healthy living. He regularly contributes to a slew of publications, as well as consulting with companies looking to make an impact using the web and social media. He lives in Ithaca, NY with his family on an apple farm.

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