Black ant crawling on green and red flower

Do Ants Hibernate?

Ants are one of the most common pests. Depending on the type, they may originally invade your yard, garden, landscaping, or outdoor structures, such as porches and decks. Eventually, these persistent bugs will more than likely make their way into your home. At Amco Ranger Termite and Pest Solutions, we help businesses and residential property owners eliminate ants quickly and safely, using environmentally friendly products and methods designed to keep them from returning in the future. 

While ants in Missouri are most likely to wreak havoc with property owners during the warmer spring and summer months, ants do not hibernate. This means that if there is a nest or colony of ants nearby that was previously not dealt with properly, there is a good chance you will spot them over the winter months as well. 

Where Do Ants Go When the Weather Turns Cold?

Ants are common invaders at summer picnics and barbecues. In warm weather, they often get in through open windows or cracks in your siding. During this time, you are likely to notice them marching across countertops, walls, and floors in kitchen and pantry areas. 

The Missouri Department of Conservation advises that in some cases, they may be coming from colonies formed outdoors, sometimes from as far as 100 yards away. These are generally worker ants, who go off in search of food while the queen remains in the nest, mating and watching over any eggs or ant larvae that are hatched. This is characteristic of yellow ants, acrobat ants, and odorous house ants, all of which are common in Missouri. Other ants you may spot in your home over winter include: 

  • Pavement ants, which usually live outdoors and underground, mainly along sidewalks and in pavement cracks as their name implies.
  • Carpenter ants, one of the more destructive species, feed on wood both outdoors and inside your home. 
  • Pharaoh ants, which usually nest in void indoor spaces, such as behind walls and in electrical outlets. Colder weather draws them out, where they can be spotted crawling along your baseboards or heating vents. 

All of the above may become more visible in you  home during the winter months. Ants do not hibernate but their bodies do require warmer temperatures to survive. Even field ants and other outdoor types not commonly seen in homes will build deeper tunnels and trenches in order to escape the cold. 

Why Am I Still Seeing Ants In My House?

If you are still seeing ants in your home despite freezing outdoor temperatures, there is a strong chance they may have moved their nest inside. Either that, or your previous attempts at exterminating them failed. 

Many home and business owners attempt do-it-yourself methods to keep ants at bay. Unfortunately, in addition to being unsafe, these are generally ineffective for the following reasons: 

  • Over-the-counter insecticides are simply not strong enough to eradicate an ant colony, nor are they generally applied the right way. 
  • Simply spraying will not do the trick. The University of Missouri advises that different types of ants require different elimination methods. For example, to effectively eliminate acrobat ants, you must find and thoroughly spray the nest, whereas pharaoh ants require the use of baits. 
  • You have to eliminate the entire nest. Another common mistake made among DIYers is killing only the queen. While this does prevent her from hatching more eggs, it does not prevent other queens from taking her place.
  • Even once the queen and the nest is removed, you need to address nearby conditions that may have served to attract ants to your home. This means sealing up cracks at windows, doors, and the exteriors of your home, eliminating food sources, attending to areas in your yard where ants are likely to nest. 

Half measures and the wrong methods will not yield the desired results and you will likely continue to see ants over the winter months. 

Reach Out to Us Today for Help

If you are experiencing problems with ants in your home despite the cooler temperatures, Amco Ranger Pest Control Services provides the professional help you need. You can expect fast, effective, friendly service backed by our 100 percent customer satisfaction guarantee. When dealing with pest control problems, it is important to remember that the longer you wait, the bigger your problem is likely to get. To eliminate ants permanently from your home or business, call or contact our Missouri ant control experts online and request a free, no-obligation inspection today.