September and October are the ideal time to apply fire ant bait to your lawn and with the recent rains, mounds are more visible. During fall months, ants are still foraging, weather may be milder and the slow-acting bait can take effect over the winter while you are indoors.
Since ants do travel from yard to yard, it would be smart to team up with your neighbors to implement a fire ant control program at the same time. The two-step method gives excellent control, especially in larger lawns and when applied to an entire neighborhood.
The first step is to broadcast ant bait over the entire lawn. Foraging ants will pick up the bait and carry the particles to all colonies in the yard. This helps control visible as well as hidden fire ant nests. Baits do not kill fire ants overnight, so be patient. Products containing indoxacarb, hydramethylnon, and spinosod work the fastest, usually within 2 to 4 weeks.
One second step is to directly treat any ant colony that needs immediate control. Step 2 treatment options include: granular products, liquid concentrates, dusts, baits, and naturally derived insecticides. Closely follow label directions.
To get the most from baits, adhere to the following suggestions: Use fresh baits from an unopened container. Once the container is opened, baits should be used within a month or two. Don’t water the lawn after applying baits and don’t apply baits when rain is expected within 8 hours. During hot weather, apply baits only in the evening.
By joining with neighbors, you can reduce costs and improve control. It takes longer for fire ants to re-infest when larger areas are treated with the two-step method. Hiring a professional pest control company to treat the neighborhood can ensure the treatments are applied properly and on time.
For more information on fire ants go to http://fireants.tamu.edu.