Rover Ants in Your Neighborhood
Dark Rover Ants (Brachymyrmex patagonicus) are an introduced nuisance ant species that can be found throughout the Southeastern United States. These very small brown ants, ranging in size from 1-3mm, live in colonies built in the soil. These colonies are typically found near the base of a tree in leaf litter or wood piles; in some landscaped areas these ants will create their colonies in mulch. Occasionally, the ants will be found to colonize in manmade structures; however, they have not been shown to cause damage to the structure. They choose their colony sites based on moisture levels, preferring to live in areas of higher moisture.
The ants may be seen more often during the months of May-August. This increase in sightings is related to the ants’ seasonal mating flights. If you are seeing any of these tiny brown ants don’t fret; they don’t bite, sting or transmit disease. During these mating flights, the ants will be attracted to outdoor lights and may be seen flying around. To discourage the ants, try adjusting your bulbs or fixture placement or turn off outdoor lights at night. Since they prefer to colonize areas of higher moisture, you can ensure that they do not colonize in your home or other structures by controlling the humidity and keeping mulch away from the foundation of your structure. If you are seeing these ants in your landscape, try adjusting your irrigation levels to minimize the amount of excess moisture. Follow the below links for more information.