Synonymous with Canadian spring and summertime, everybody is familiar with ants but what happens to ants in winter? When Canada starts experiencing colder weather in autumn and winter, these crawling critters seemingly disappear into the abyss. Just question it yourself for a second. When was the last time you saw a rogue ant or ten in your home or business at this time of year?
The answer is usually very few and we’d forgive you for thinking that ants make like geese and vacation down in Tijuana until Daylight Saving Time ends! Feed your curiosity and carry on reading because this Terminix Canada blog will explain exactly what happens to ants in winter.
Do Ants Hibernate In Winter?
Do ants hibernate in winter? You must be thinking they do considering that ant infested gap in your skirting has gone quiet all of a sudden. Ultimately, ants don’t exactly hibernate at this time of year. However, they do enter a state of dormancy within their colonies once the temperature drops a few degrees. Cold-blooded creatures, ants can go without food but they’ll never survive Canada’s harsh winter without seeking shelter and warmth. That’s why they pitch up inside our homes to extend their lifespan.
Unlike true hibernation, ants will continue their usual activities during a very mild winter. Just because you can’t see ants during winter, this doesn’t mean they’ve completely disappeared. It’s important to note that most Canadian ant species aren’t outright foragers willing to risk their life in plain sight. Therefore, you won’t see the majority of ant species traversing your home in search of food. Instead, they will be prioritizing their newfound shelter and warmth behind the scenes, remaining evasive, out of sight, and ultimately, out of our minds.
This is why it’s so important not to forget the threats that ants pose to your home during winter and thereafter. If an ant colony is located within your home structure itself, they could be doing damage unknowingly as we speak.
What Is Ant Diapause And How Does It Change Ants’ Behaviour?
So we’ve established that ants aren’t true hibernators. However, they will enter a slower metabolic state that is referred to as “diapause”. When the mercury drops on thermometers during winter, this coincides with ants naturally slowing down or ceasing their activities. We’re talking about things like eating, drinking, and laying eggs.
Ants won’t perform any of these activities when cold temperatures arrive, becoming sluggish in nature. Conserving their energy at this time, ants won’t hibernate in the traditional sense but will instead burrow deep into the soil, in areas beneath rocks, and underneath tree bark. Why? Because these are the places where ants can maintain body heat via consistent temperatures. At this time, an ant colony will encircle a queen to defend their population.
What Happens To Ants Come Springtime?
Spring is when ants experience their great awakening. This is why it’s so important to get professional ant control performed on your premises before warmer weather arrives. This will spare you from ants wreaking havoc in your home once they’re ready to start hunting for food again.
You should be aware that once worker ants have discovered a food source in your home, they will return straight back to alert the wider colony about its location. Leaving behind odour trails to memorize the path from nest to food source, these trails are commonly spotted in rooms like kitchens.
Got Carpenter Ants In House? Why Is This The Case This Winter?
As we alluded to earlier in this blog, ants are a species that dislike the cold and love things like damp wood. One of the most commonly discovered home invading ant species, our Terminix Canada teams regularly gets called to treat carpenter ants.
If you have carpenter ants in house, it may well be the case that a satellite colony from outside established a new colony within the warm confines of your home. Think about it for a second. Ants get everything they need in the house with delicious damp wood, food sources, and warmth. It’s practically a vacation resort tailored to their every whim!
It’s important to catch early signs of carpenter ants in the house in order to prevent the full establishment of a satellite colony within your walls, otherwise you could be in for a serious ant problem come springtime. At that point, you’ll be wishing ants did hibernate in the winter!
How Do You Get Rid Of Carpenter Ants And Other Species?
In order to successfully control a carpenter ant infestation, or an infestation of another ant species, you can’t simply remove the ants you can see. Instead, you must work with a professional ant pest control company like Terminix Canada to remove ant nests, both the satellite and primary nests.
Ultimately, the worker ants belonging to a carpenter ant colony will continue spawning and tunnelling until the queen is eliminated. DIY ant control tactics will only get you so far. Why? Because locating the precise location of every single satellite and primary nest is incredibly difficult.
Therefore, you should contact our professionals at Terminix Canada. We know what it truly takes to get rid of carpenter ants and other species. Now you know what happens to ants in winter, trust our team. They can protect your home this season and year-round too. Offering 24/7 support, learn more about our residential ant control services in Canada today.