Carpenter Ants: Defeating the Army Behind Your Walls

Carpenter Ants: Defeating the Army Behind Your Walls

Have you ever wondered what a carpenter ant really is? We can guarantee you that they are not building beautiful furniture pieces. In fact, quite the opposite. You may think, “oh, it’s just an ant,” but these ants will give you something to worry about it if not taken care of.

Carpenter ants and termites look for new homes in the summer

Carpenter antLike termites, in late winter and early spring, young adult carpenter ants, known as alates, swarm to mate and start new colonies. Male and female reproductives mate and form new colonies. These new colonies need places to nest and raise their broods. Unlike termites, these sometimes large black and brown to reddish bi-colored ants do not eat wood, but burrow through it, creating galleries and tunnels, causing structural damage to homes.

Measuring from .25 inches to around .75 inches, carpenter ants need a constant source of moisture to survive. Attracted to damp wood around your property or constantly moist boards and siding, carpenter ants like to nest in the damp and rotting wood outside your home, but will move inside by burrowing through damp wood or finding cracks in wood on the exterior of your home. Sometimes, they even take over termite colonies or old termite galleries.

Carpenter ant colonies include a main/parent colony and can include several satellite colonies. While carpenter ants may nest outside and forage up to 100 yards in search of food, satellite colonies may exist in your walls, attics and around moist areas in your home.

Outside, carpenter ants prefer proteins, feeding on live and dead insects and they like the sweet honeydew produced by aphids and some scale insects. In your home, carpenter ants are attracted to fatty foods, meats and sweets like jelly and syrups, foraging between sunset and midnight in your kitchen.

Signs of a carpenter ant issue

Signs of carpenter ant infestations include:

  • Discarded wings of swarmers near windowsills, baseboards and vents.
  • Active swarming indoors.
  • Sawdust piles made by boring through wood, and the ant excavating remains of dead ants and frass (sawdust).
  • Irregular, wide, clean, ragged surfaced galleries in wood surfaces.
  • Active foraging in your home at night or other low-light situations such as early mornings.

Contact a professional pest control company to eliminate carpenter ants and termites

Carpenter AntsIf you suspect carpenter ant activity in your home, contact a professional pest control company, such as Truly Nolen to schedule a free pest inspection. Although carpenter ants and termites look similar, carpenter ants have a defined waist, between their thorax and abdomen, while termites are more broadly connected. Carpenter ant alates’ sport a pair of upper wings that are much larger than their lower wings, whereas both pairs of termite alates’ wings are relatively the same size.

Also, carpenter ants have bent antennae but termite antennae are straight with no bend in them. Because carpenter ants may be causing damage to your home that is expensive to repair, we recommend contacting a trained, certified pest professional to inspect your property and design a plan to eradicate carpenter ants from your property.

Truly Nolen targets nests with innovative IPM system

Truly Nolen’s innovative Integrated Pest Management systems (IPM) utilize people and pet friendly treatments and methods that address primary and satellite nests. Our technicians are trained to identify potential carpenter ant areas and use materials that not only address your current infestation but target nests to eliminate colonies at their sources, killing off the queen, the brood and many worker ants. Without queens or secondary reproductive to take the queen’s place, reproduction stops and the colony collapses.

Carpenter ant prevention guidelines

To prevent carpenter ant invasions, keep these guidelines in mind:

  • Repair or replace leaky faucets and other moisture sources around your home.
  • Remove standing water from porches, decks and other poor water drainage areas.
  • Regularly inspect crawlspaces, attics and basements for moisture.
  • Seal or caulk all cracks and crevices around your foundation, as well as around windows and doors.
  • Remove all landscaping debris (leaves, litter, mulch) and construction materials that are against the house and stack firewood at least 20 feet away from your structure.
  • Keep tree branches and shrubs trimmed away from your house as they provide bridges for carpenter ants intent on moving indoors.
  • Regularly inspect decks, wooden storage sheds, old tree stumps and other wood on your property for signs of carpenter ant activity, like small holes in wooden surfaces.

This summer, when you are prepping your home for a new coat of paint and discover wood shavings or evidence of wood damage, contact your local Truly Nolen location to schedule a free pest inspection. Our innovative eco-friendly Integrated Pest Management (IPM) approach arms our technicians with the knowledge and materials to protect your home from carpenter ant colonies.

While a fresh coat of paint creates great curb appeal and can help to weatherproof your house, it can also help protect your home from pests that are attracted to damp wood, such as termites, carpenter bees and carpenter ants. Ask about Truly Nolen’s Four Seasons Pest Control service approach to pest control that helps to identify and treat potential pest issues with seasonal visits that monitor and prevent pests from entering your home, creating a pest barrier around your property. Contact your Truly Nolen professionals today and enjoy your summer!

Truly Nolen Seeing More Indoor Pests Due to Atypical Atlanta Summer

With hotter than normal temperatures and drought like conditions over the past few months, recent scattered rains have caused something else to scatter inside Atlanta-area homes – pests!

“This atypical Atlanta Summer in terms of weather has caused ants to pop up all over the place,” said Chris Ashley, Truly Nolen franchisee, Canton. “When rain follows a long drought period, this is typically when people start seeing a rise in ants in their homes.”

Ants are always looking for food when they do invade a home, so keeping food sources under wraps and stored properly is one way to help keep them at bay before calling for a professional. In addition to ants, Ashley said several other insects are heading indoors due to the abnormal weather pattern.

“During some of my recent pest inspections, we have come across American and smokey brown roaches, earwigs, centipedes and beetles that normally prefer living outdoors in landscape areas,” Ashley said. “Other than ants, none of these are often spotted indoors, which is why the drought followed by scattered rain is the main culprit.”

As a homeowner, there are measures you can take to minimize the conditions that are conducive to pests and help reduce the likelihood of an infestation. From eliminating wood-to-soil contact wherever possible to diverting water from the foundation of the home, prevention is key. In addition, the Truly Nolen website contains a pest identification section to help users in case they need to identify a problem in their home: https://www.trulynolen.com/pest-identifier/.

“Whether you end up trying to handle the problem yourself or calling a professional to conduct a pest inspection, the atypical summer weather ensures a surge in pests sooner than later,” said Ashley. For more information, visit https://www.trulynolen.com/locations/ga/atlanta/atlanta.asp or call our North Atlanta service office at (678) 561-2847.

About Truly Nolen
Founded in 1938, Tucson, Arizona-based Truly Nolen of America is the largest family-owned pest control company in the United States. Truly Nolen has over 80 branch offices in Arizona, California, Florida, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas and Utah. The company also has independently owned and operated franchises in an ever-growing number of territories including Kentucky, Georgia, New Jersey, Canada, Puerto Rico and over 60 countries. To learn more about Truly Nolen, visit www.trulynolen.com or follow us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/TrulyNolen) and Twitter (www.twitter.com/TrulyNolen).

Truly Nolen Pest Control Promotes Bohne to Director, Domestic Franchising

Truly Nolen Pest Control recently announced the promotion of Greg Bohne to Director of Domestic Franchising. He will be based at the company’s Tucson, Ariz. Corporate headquarters at 3636 E. Speedway Blvd.  Bohne takes over for longtime Truly Nolen employee Ron DeSear, who is semi-retiring. DeSear will remain working with the company on special projects.

Bohne joined the company in August 2013 where he excelled in the Manager-in-Training program and previously managed both the Tucson and North Tucson service offices. He moved to the domestic franchise division in August 2015. Previously, Bohne was a regional manager for an automotive fluid recycling company for four years and the president of a billiard table manufacturer and retailer for 12 years.

Some of Bohne’s new responsibilities will include helping develop strategy and tactics for the company’s franchise growth plan, helping franchisees with creative content for their markets, and continuing to help make franchisees as successful as possible. “I am excited to join our current Franchisees and support them in meeting their growth objectives as well as grow our current footprint of Franchise locations,” said Bohne. “I believe our unique culture as a company makes us attractive to potential franchisees, and having personally experienced Fortune 200 and privately held companies, none have come close to matching the fantastic culture we have here.”

“Greg excelled as a manager, and over the last year, it became apparent that his knack of providing support for our franchisees any way he could was greatly appreciated by them as well as our internal team,”  said Greg Weatherly, Truly Nolen Executive Vice President. “We are excited to have Greg as the leader of domestic franchising and look forward to the continued growth of this division.”

About Truly Nolen
Founded in 1938, Tucson, Arizona-based Truly Nolen of America is the largest family-owned pest control company in the United States. Truly Nolen has over 80 branch offices in Arizona, California, Florida, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas and Utah. The company also has independently owned and operated franchises in an ever-growing number of territories including Kentucky, Georgia, New Jersey, Canada, Puerto Rico and over 60 countries. To learn more about Truly Nolen, visit www.trulynolen.com or follow us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/TrulyNolen) and Twitter (www.twitter.com/TrulyNolen).

Truly Nolen Pest Control Promotes Greg Bohne to Director

Mosquito Madness in Charlotte

Mosquito sucking blood
Charlotte, NC is nationally ranked one of the worst cities for mosquitoes. High temperatures and moist conditions attract mosquitoes, and standing water allows them to breed. Mosquitoes can be identified by their slender bodies and long legs. Adults can live from 10 days all the way up to 6 months. With summer in full force, taking a proactive approach against these pests is key to preventing bites.

Do Mosquitoes Favor Some More Than Others?

An article from Smithsonian magazine explains that some individuals are more prone to mosquito bites than others. Individuals who have type O blood type are especially favorable to mosquitoes. Larger individuals who emit more carbon dioxide when they breathe are also on this list. This group includes tall people and the obese. Elevated body temperatures, excess sweat and bacteria on the skin are also contributing factors.

Prevention and Types of Mosquito-borne Illnesses

Mother Applying Bug Spray To Daughter
Families in the Charlotte area should take precautions against mosquitoes, mainly during the months of June, July and August, to reduce chances of the transfer of mosquito-borne illnesses. Mosquito bites are known to spread diseases and cause allergic reactions. Some mosquito-related illnesses that have been reported are Zika, Malaria, Encephalitis, Chikungunya Virus and West Nile Virus. Over a thousand people have died from West Nile since 1999. There have been three confirmed cases of Chikungunya Virus in North Carolina with symptoms of fever, headache, muscle ache and joint pain. If you have been bitten and are experiencing any enhanced symptoms, we urge you to seek immediate medical attention.

Here are some simple tips to keep in mind that can help you avoid and prevent the dangers and annoyance of mosquitoes:

  • Wear long sleeves and white or light colored clothing when camping or outdoors for an extended period of time.
  • Steer clear of wearing flowery fragrances before spending time outdoors to decrease your chances of becoming a target.
  • Place citronella plants and candles on patios and porches. Chemical-free repellents also come in handy for warding off mosquitoes.
  • Mosquitoes breed in standing water so keep an eye out for pooling water in your yard and stay up to date on pool upkeep if you have a swimming pool at home.

Beat the Bite!

Pest control services, such as Truly Nolen Charlotte, offer mosquito mitigation for residential and commercial customers. Expert pest removal agents search for moist areas and conditions conducive to mosquito breeding around the bite site to begin a program designed to control mosquitoes through larval to adult stages. If avoidance and prevention fail to defeat the problem, reach out to Truly Nolen Charlotte at 704-910-2936 for answers.

New Headquarters “Global Sign”, Three Openings since December Have Truly Nolen International On Course for a Busy 2016

Shortly after the Truly Nolen International Training Center opened at 1800 33rd Street in Orlando in late-2015, Jose Lutz, CEO, Truly Nolen International, was looking for something special to draw attention from passing vehicles on Interstate 4. With the recent installation of TNI’s “Global Sign” and three more grand openings, 2016 has already been a successful one.

In conjunction with the sign company that designed, fabricated, and installed the unique project, the head-turning sign is a 7.5 foot-diameter expanded-polystyrene ball surrounded by aluminum in a 12 foot-diameter outer ring. The sign is held in place by 11 x 11 x 6-ft. foundation footers filled in with 35 cubic yards of concrete.

“Once we moved into our new building late last year, we always had a vision for a sign that would stand out and make drivers and passengers take a second look while they pass by our office,” said Lutz. “Since the sign was installed at the beginning of April, we have received at least a few calls a week complimenting us on the sign’s unique design!”

The franchises that have opened since January 1, 2016 are located in Las Tablas, Panama; Maputo, Mozambique; and the Isle of Cape Verde. These three openings bring the company’s total to 207 offices in 62 countries.

Offering the same quality service for which it is known domestically, Truly Nolen International, which employs over 3,500 around the globe, has the largest footprint of any pest control company in the world, in terms of countries in which they operate. Currently, 90 percent of the company’s international branches serve businesses both for active and preventative protection from pest issues.

For more information about Truly Nolen International Franchising, call (800) 771-6423 or visit www.trulynoleninternational.com.  

About Truly Nolen
Founded in 1938, Tucson, Arizona-based Truly Nolen of America is the largest family-owned pest control company in the United States. Truly Nolen has over 80 branch offices in Arizona, California, Florida, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas and Utah. The company also has independently owned and operated franchises in an ever-growing number of territories including Kentucky, Georgia, New Jersey, Canada, Puerto Rico and over 60 countries. To learn more about Truly Nolen, visit www.trulynolen.com or follow us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/TrulyNolen) and Twitter (www.twitter.com/TrulyNolen).

Truly Nolen Global Headquarters