Pharaoh Ants are small, about 1/16-inch long. They colored light yellow to red, with black markings on the abdomen.
Pharaoh Ants grow from egg to adult in about 45 days. The queens live as long as 39 weeks and can lay about 400 eggs. Workers only live up to 10 weeks.
Pharaoh Ants, being extremely small, can be found in diverse places. Their nests are usually well hidden and the can forage far away from the nest. Pharoah Ants can be persistent, with large colonies.
Phraoh Ants are common inside homes in Florida. Inside they are usually found in the kitchen and bathrooms, but workers are also commonly seen trailing along window sills and baseboards.
They are also spotted near water sources around counter tops, toilets, drains, and sinks.
Indoors they prefer to nest in recessed areas like wall voids, under some appliances, in wall outlets, and under carpets for protection.
Pharaoh Ants can nest outdoors in lawns and gardens.
Unless you use a non-repellent spray, baiting is the preferred treatment over typical residual spraying. Baiting is the most reliable way to eliminate the entire colony. When choosing Ant baits, it is best to choose from both the sugar-based baits and protein/grease-based baits. Pharoah Ants are mainly a problem inside, so the recommended baits below are for inside use.
If using a spray, choose a non-repellent type unless you are treating the nest itself.
Why Ant Bait?
The use of residual sprays or dusts stresses Ant colonies, causing them to split into sub-colonies and scatter. This scattering, also called budding, multiplies the number of Ant colonies, and thereby multiplies your Ant problem.
When you bait, use a slow-acting bait. Quick-kill insecticides and baits will only kill the foraging Ants, not allowing those worker Ants to take the bait back home to feed the queen, nest workers, and brood.
If the Ant bait that you are currently using is not effective (if the Ants are not visiting the bait) you will need to change baits. Slow-acting baits provide a variety of the foods the Ants find in nature. Examples are: other insects (proteins/grease-based baits), nectar, aphid honeydew, and plant products (sugar and carbohydrates found in sweet-based baits).
Choosing a bait requires an understanding of the nutritional needs of the colony. To be sure that you have all the baiting needs met, you may want to be ready with a sugar/carbohydrate-based bait, a grease/fat-based bait, and a protein-based bait.
IMPORTANT NOTE: REMOVE ALL OTHER FOOD COMPETITION WHEN BAITING AND LEAVE THE BAIT ALONE ONCE THE ANTS START FEEDING ON IT.
Recommended Pharaoh Ant Baits
(Sweet and Protein/Grease Feeding Cycles)
When in doubt of which one to choose, choose one from each category.
- Top recommendation from the protein/grease category is Advion Ant Bait Arena, followed by Advance 375A
- To recommendation from the sweet feeding category is Advion Ant Bait Gel
Protein /Grease feeding cycles
Sweet Feeding Cycles
Non-Repellents For Outside and Inside Pharaoh Ant Control
Spraying for Pavement Ants with Non-Repellents
You would spray on the outside with Taurus around the perimeter. Usually spraying the perimeter is enough treatment for Pharaoh Ants, will help with prevention. If you need any insecticide inside, use Phantom Aerosol in cracks and crevices.
Non-Repellent insecticides are best for ants and termites, because these insects can not detect it and will not try to escape the insecticide. Non-repellent insecticides can't be smelled, tasted, or even felt by Pavement Ants.
Another advantage for using a non repellent insecticide such as Taurus or Phantom for Pharaoh Ant Control, is that you can use ant baits near it. Repellent insecticides do not combine well with insect baits, because they contaminate the lures inside the baits; that is not the case with non-repellents.