Most bed bug killers may not work and are expensive – but you can use natural treatments such as pests. So, below we answer this question – do ants kill bed bugs?
In summary, ants (among other insects) such as the red-imported fire and pharaoh ant species predate and kill bed bugs. But exterminators also recommend heat treatment for bed bugs.
The predators of bed bugs are Masked Bed Bug Hunter, House Centipedes, Thanatus Flavidus Spiders, American Cockroaches, Pharaoh Ants, Red-Imported Fire Ants, and Argentine Ants.
Pharaoh ants are considered the most dangerous ant species in killing and eating bed bugs – especially for few bed bugs – besides fire ants and argentine ants. But ants won’t help remove massive bed bug infestations.
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Details: Do Ants Kill Bed Bugs??
But ants will also help locate the bed bugs’ hiding places -but you won’t have to introduce the bugs into your house – as may also prove difficult to control these pests.
1. Pharaoh Ant
Most ant species will eat various insects and food types – and besides pharaoh ants eating various foods, they’ll also feed on bed bugs. Compared to other ant species, pharaoh ants feed on bed bugs more.
The pharaoh ants are described as indoor pests – their color may be considered as light yellow-brown. Equally, the pharaoh ants are also fast-producing just like with bed bugs.
Therefore, employing the wrong control techniques could on the ants split them into a number of colonies that’ll spread all over your house and surrounding spaces – this is a pest-control headache.
Pharaon ants are yellow-brown in color and will easily feed on bed bugs – but they, like other ants, will produce very fast. Ants will multiply fast – and this could lead to a large number of them in your house.
Further, you may contaminate the food – which could lead to dysentery and salmonella – and thus using the ants on bed-bugs could lead to problems. Also, exterminating ants could be challenging than bed bugs.
2. Masked Bed-Bug Hunter
The masked bed-bug hunter (Reduvius personatus) is considered to be an assassin bug with 6 spider-like legs, oval and flattened body – they’re active predators of bedbugs and different insects.
This spider species mainly feed on insec6ts and bedbugs – but if mishandled, it can bite humans to defend themselves. The nocturnal feeders plus their nymphs cover themselves using insect parts, lint, and house dust – glued on their bodies.
The Masked hunter live in dry and warm areas – such as your home – they’re gray and brown (they’re able to fly too) – measuring anywhere around 17 – 22 millimeters.
The bed bug hunters are named so because they’ll hide in the dust when in their nymph stage. The bugs have symbiosis life relationships with pigeons and bats – bed bugs will feed on insects attracted by the pigeons and bats.
- But, it is not advisable to introduce masked bed-bug hunters and some subspecies into the house as they may bring diseases to you and other humans.
- Also, these masked hunters will bite humans (painfully) whenever they feel threatened – some liken the bite to that of snakes.
Masked hunters have wings and may also fly with elongated bodies – found in the eastern and central areas of the US. You’ll find the bugs in colder areas – plus the warm and dry areas.
Do Ants Eat Insects and Bed Bugs?
The Salt Lake scientists report that lizards ate different insects including flies – and the black ants would also exterminate bed bugs. Ants will also feed on nectar and rotting fruits – while Aphids also feeding on sap.
Other ant species, some red or black, smaller or even larger will scavenge but won’t be an effective treatment for the bed bugs. The scavengers and predators will besides feeding on leftovers eat insects.
You’ll find the masked hunters in houses and barns – and places with pigeons and bats – they also eat arthropods.
Bed Bugs versus Argentine Ants
The small Argentine ant is domiciled in Brazil, Uruguay, and Argentina – it measures about 1/10-inch in length but their queens have longer bodies – and all have black and dark brown colored.
Argentine ants, like the carpenter ants, will in both wood and wall cracks – but there won’t be deep nests. They’ll colonize new locations and collaborate – you’ll find them around West Coast, Mississippi, and Louisiana.
These ants will love sweet foods but may also extract the protein content in the dead insects. But the Argentine ant lack stingers and hence won’t bite bed bugs or even kill them.
Bed Bugs vs Red-Imported Fire Ants
The red-imported fire ants are domiciled in South America but they’ve also colonized the U.S., Asian countries, New Zealand, and Australia.
The sting or bites cause a burning sensation with some swelling. The ants may cause anaphylaxis – omnivores – they’ll feed on insects and dead mammals.
The various ant species will also eat honeydew droplets – RIFAs are described as being voracious predators.
Bed Bugs versus European Fire Ant
The red ant is an equally invasive ant species that has colonized Canada, Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New York state, Europe, and South America.
The ants primarily eat honeydew and may also feed on bed bugs to gain extra nutrition including proteins. Further, the Pharaoh ants will kill various pests – including those in temperature indoors.
The protein-rich and carbohydrate-rich insects will provide ents will great nutrition. The ants won’t work effectively and may require DIY treatment or even use an exterminator.
Disadvantages of using Ants against
1. Ants will Bug your Spaces too
Despite that ants will eat bed bugs, ants are equally pests too that’ll disturb your peace. Some of the irritating ways that the ants will bug on your spaces and items including:
- Crawling on the various spaces
- Causing damage to various structural items
- Like carpenter ants – these pests will damage the structural integrity of the houses and homes
- Damaging food
Thus, trying to kill bed bugs using ant may lead to other problems – hiding in various places and may lead to a re-infestation.
2. Bed Bugs are Hard to Reach
Bed bugs will hide in the challenging-to-reach places – the ants will hide into places that they won’t get disturbed.
Ants, on the contrary, will prefer areas that they can move freely as they search for some food sources – and not the tight cracks.
Equally, the dead bed bugs won’t be found in open spaces – but will be hiding in the walls and cracks.
3. Ants will Break Structures
Ants just like with termites, ants (like carpenter ants) will damage or even break your structures including the house as they’ll burrow into materials such as wood – damaging the property.
The bugs will dig into the wall cracks, floorboards, and baseboards – making the cracks become wider. Others may also damage your electronics – as they’ll hide inside and hence may cause short-circuiting.
Ants will love the dark and moist areas as they plan plus execute the house-damaging mission. Further, ants will be challenging to exterminate even with your regular pesticides.