Appearance: Ants have a distinctive appearance; they have elbow-jointed antenna, and a distinctive node-like structure that forms a slender waist Size: Ants vary greatly in size depending on the species and the caste.. Infestation Locations: Ants live all over the world and in most type ofclimates. It is estimated that ants make up 15-25% of the land animal biomass. Only certain isolated islands and Antarctica are free from these insects. Risks: The bite and the sting of an ant can be painful, highly irritating, and depending on the species, can be toxic. Invasive species of ants can be damaging to the invaded environment. When ants invade structures they can cause damage to the structures and contaminate food stores. About Ants have existed on earth since the mid-cretaceous period. They diversified from a wasp-like ancestor after the rise of flowering plants. Ants are highly social creatures forming colonies with a distinct caste-like social structure. The castes are the mating pairs (queen and short-lived males), soldiers, and workers. The queen and the males primarily exist for reproduction. They are taken care of by the workers. The soldiers are bigger and stronger workers. When they are not engaged in defense of the nest, the soldiers work on other colony needs such as foraging. However, when the nest is threatened the soldiers spring into action bringing their size to bear against the nest's attackers. The workers form the rank and file of the colony; they are responsible for all of the labor in the nest. The workers forage for food, expand the nest, care for the needs of the queen and the young, and in general do everything. Ants are voracious foragers and are willing to go the distance to find a source of food for the colony. Once a forager finds a source of food, that forager will return to the nest with a sample. As the forager returns she will drop a chemical marker to mark the shortest route back to the nest. Once there, she will recruit other workers to follow her trail back to the source. On return, the other ants will drop the chemical marker reinforcing the trail. Once the food supply has been exhausted, the chemical marker will dissipate, effectively closing the trail. So, while one ant in your home may seem harmless, it may be a forager dropping chemical markers that will in turn lead hundreds if not thousands of ants into your home. Control In the wild ants provide many valuable services to the environment; however, once inside your home or business, they become a pest and a distracting nuisance. The best way to control ants is though prevention. Keep a clean space free of the things that attract ant and one can usually prevent most infestations. Once an infestation has taken root there are a variety of baits, and poisoning techniques that can be effective in eradicating the infestation. A word of caution please, using the wrong method with the wrong species of ant can actually cause the colony to split under the stress and effectively double the problem. For questions, please contact DLM pest control, our knowledgeable staff will be happy to assist you in dispatching your unwanted ant guests.