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Parasites > European red fire ant
Parasites > European red fire ant

How can I recognize the European Red Fire Ant?

This toxic and venimous ant is located in the Outaouais region, in Aylmer and in Ottawa. Each colony of Red Fire Ant may content tens of fertile queens. An active colony can content more than 10 000 ants. This ant species is very prolific.

The European Red Fire Ant is a small ant , it is yellow to red-brown color. Its cuticule is very shiny . The head is round and darker than the rest of its body. The head has longitudinal ridges with two circular compounded eyes. Worker ants are 4 to 5 mm long and young winged queens are 7 to 8 mm. The petiole between the thorax and the abdomen have 2 nodes. The thorax near its end has 2 spines pointing backwards. The abdomen is ended by a sting. Myrmica rubra is an invasive ant specie and its colony is polygynous (several queens).

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Does the European Red Fire Ant represent a risk for me and can it damage my belongings ?

European Red Fire Ants do not attack building structure. They do not cause any damage to our goods. Nevertheless, this specie is a reel health risk for your family and your pets. It is a very serious and dangerous ant specie. These ants are voracious even at the larva stage.

They have to eat all the time. The worker ants have to search constantly for food and feed the larvae day and night bringing back all the food to the nests, dead or alive. The Myrmica rubra is a great cleaning ant. European Red Fire Ant has a great interest toward animal proteins. This ant specie is more carnivorous at certain times of the year.

Like we already said, this specie has a sting and venom gland. The venom is very strong and could be as powerfull as the venom of a small Yellowjacket Wasp. Sometimes it is so painfull, that a visit to the emergency department is necessary when there has been several stungs or bites. When the ants are in grass, they bite and sting cats, dogs and children. Everyone will scream !

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What are the signs of its presence ?

This ant is pretty small and it is possible to confuse it with other kinds of ants. One of the first sign of its presence is a painfull sensation of its sting. This ant is very agressive and will not hesitate to sting and pierce the skin with its mandibles. It creates a big choc !

If you suspect you have this ant in your yard, you should see them by hundreds. You will also see tens of very shiny red ants attacking big insects, earthworms. You will see them everywhere in the grass, on tree bark, on twigs, on mulch, under stones, looking to hunt and kill all living bugs in the area.

You might see grey sandy castles with ventilation holes through grass and leaves. Use a stick and open it, but do not put your finger in it. If you do , you will certainly regreat it! The Canadian European Red Fire Ant population is much more agressive than the native European ant population. Our Canadian Myrmica rubra is always in an attack mode, it bites and stings whatever or whoever it encounters. Your dog may whine and refuse to go out because it is attacked by Red Fire Ants in the yard or at the park. When people are bitten and stung, red dots rapidly appear on skin. Often, the red fire ant can be accidently introduced in the house by our pets or through objects : news papers, toys, beach towels, etc.

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What can I do when European Red Fire Ant are in my home ?

Myrmica rubra is a polygynous ant, meaning that it has several queens, their developping cycle is very fast. A colony can be very prolific and produce thousands of ants each month. This means they can potentially produce hundreds of queens and fertile males.

Colonies are crowded with larvae. Larvae are the stomach of ant colonies, but they require to be constantly fed. In order to do so, foraging ants will invade fences, tree branches, grass, flowers and ornemantals to collect mildew, nectar, water, and insects. They might try to explore the insides. What a nightmare. If it happens to you call our company , we already have experienced many cases of that nasty in ant Ottawa and Aylmer. It is an urgent call

Inside, you generally see them visiting the sink counter, and food containers (peanut butter, pet dishes). This ant is a real serious pest, that cannot be allowed in, nor tolerated for too long. When you realize its presence, it is an emergency call to SOS Bugs Pest Control (613)404-7017. We will be there in less than an hour with a special way to solve it inside. For the outside we will proceed with a very effective product. Our insect biologist knows very well the biology of all ants and European Red Fire Ant is not an exception.

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