Ants and Aphids have a special relationship

Have you ever noticed that during the summer months, which is our major growing season, whenever you see a trail of ants going up a tree you almost certainly will find aphids in the tree? There’s a great reason for it. Some ants actually farm aphids for their sweet “honeydew” that is excreted after they eat plant material. The ants will often go as far as eating the wings off of the aphids so they can’t get away. Ants also have been found to have a chemical on their feet that tranquilizes the aphids as another way of keeping them close by for their very important honeydew. The ants in turn will protect aphids from their natural predators such as the ladybug or lady beetle. Ants have also been observed physically moving aphids to a part of the plant that is more healthy so it could produce more honeydew. It’s an odd symbiotic relationship that keeps both species alive and thriving.

Ants 'herding' aphids

Chemicals on ants’ feet tranquilize and subdue colonies of aphids, keeping them close-by as a ready source of food, says new research.

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Since we’re on the subject of ants, those of you in the Bakersfield local area have probably noticed that summer is truly here. We’ve already experienced a few triple digit days (over 100ยบ F) and that kind of heat really drives ants crazy. It also drives them indoors where they try to escape the heat. While it’s hard to blame them for trying, we will do whatever it takes to keep them out. If you have or have ever experienced ants invading your home, it is very frustrating. At Oxley Pest Control, we have a specific method of treating your home for ants. Many times, we can treat by putting special material around the base of the house. This material is picked up by the ants and brought back and transferred to the colony. Within a short period of time, the colony suffers major loss and is eventually destroyed. Once your yard is free of ants, you are able to enjoy your backyard without having to deal with this common pest. We can also help you get rid of aphids too.

Give Oxley Pest a call at 661-325-ANTS or visit our website for more information

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