News and Updates

Raspberry crazy ants spread throughout Texas

Here in Texas, it’s the fire ant mounds you try to avoid. However, homeowners and businesses are learning about a bigger problem on their hands.

They’re known as the raspberry crazy ants, which can cause extensive damage to residential and commercial electrical systems. And experts say there’s no end in sight.

“These ants are real bad about getting into electronic circuit boards,” said Tom Rasberry with Budget Pest Control.

The raspberry crazy ant was discovered by Rasberry in 2002, hence how it got its name. He says they’re spreading across our region at alarming rates, and the potential damage is costly.

“We’re talking about hundreds and hundreds of millions and billions of dollars,” Rasberry said.

Rasberry says in 2005, there were only in two known areas these ants were found in. But not anymore.

“At this point, they’re in over 24 counties in Texas,” Rasberry said.

Rasberry says they’re no end of sight in stopping them as well. But don’t fear being attacked.

“The raspberry crazy ant does not have a stinger, like the fire ant does. It does not sting,” said Dr. Paul Nester with the Texas A&M Agrilife Extension Service.

Nester says they’re more of a nuisance bug, and there are some things you can do to keep them at bay.

“We try and stress the sanitation, remove things away from the house — pots and garbage cans, anything laying around the house because that’s harborage areas,” Nester said.

But even if you do that, it’s no guarantee you won’t be infested. If you bring home a plant from a nursery…

“You can pick up a potted plant that might have a queen or so in it, and they can move it around. It’s easily transferred,” Nester said.

If you have an infestation, an exterminator can help, but make certain they have experience with this type of ant because it is not like any other that we have had in the U.S. [by Jeff Ehling via ABC 13]

2 thoughts on “Raspberry crazy ants spread throughout Texas

  1. I live on the San Jacinto river in Humble Texas. These ants showed up after the water rose do to high rain. Since I live on the river the exterminators are leery about using “tramador” I’ve been using Borax and sugar I’ve also been using garlic powder ground pepper As a deterrent They keep getting worse They won’t stay out of my well contacts or the rest of my Electronic pieces. What else do you suggest?

    • Tara, thanks for contacting us! We’ve forwarded your question to Dr. Paul Nester, who handles questions for fire ants and other insects in our Harris County Extension office. If you have any other questions, please don’t hesitate to contact your local county extension extension agents. Find yours at http://counties.agrilife.org/.

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