Fire ants may be tiny – just 1/4 inch or less in length – but if you’ve ever been stung by them, you know that they pack quite a wallop. They may be similar to other red or black ants in appearance, but fire ants react angrily when their nest is disturbed. The ant first bites the skin, then inserts its stinger and injects a venom. The ant can sting several times in the same area, and many ants may attack at the same time. Reaction to the stings depends on your degree of allergy, but pustules up to 1/8 inch in diameter develop on the skin within 24 hours and can be very painful and sometimes require medical attention.
In addition to being a potential health hazard to humans and animals, fire ants often create a real problem for homeowners by building their mounds in lawns and gardens. The mounds can be a foot high and can seriously damage mowers and tillers.
Fire ants have spread across much of the southern United States and continue to advance into new areas. If you have fire ants in your area, there are several products you can use to protect your yard and your family. These Ortho products offer the best control:
1. Fire Ant Killer, when sprinkled over the mound, knocks down and kills fire ants within hours. Entire colonies are destroyed within a week.
2. Fire Ant Killer Broadcast , when broadcast over your yard, kill fire ants already there and foraging ants that can enter from other areas. One treatment protects for up to a year and it kills eight times faster than the leading competitor.