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Miche Pest Control is a family owned and operated, full service pest control company that provides residential and commercial pest control services for ants in Washington DC, Maryland, and Northern Virginia. Our expert ant exterminators get rid of ants fast, and use preventative methods to help keep ants from coming back after they've been eliminated. Miche Pest Control has a 4.9 star rating and over 1,000 reviews online - click on the button below to get started, or give us a call today!

Red Velvet Ants, AKA Cow Killers

Red velvet ants, also known as cow killers, are a type of wasp that is native to the United States. They get their name from the bright red velvet-like hairs that cover their bodies, as well as their painful sting which is said to be as powerful as a cow's kick.

Despite their intimidating name and appearance, red velvet ants are actually quite docile and do not sting unless they are provoked. In fact, they are an important part of the ecosystem as they play a role in controlling pest populations.

Red velvet ants are most commonly found in dry, sandy areas such as deserts and beaches. They are active during the day and can often be seen crawling around on the ground or on plants.

Females of the species have wings, while males do not. Both males and females have a prominent set of antennae and mandibles, which they use to catch and eat small insects.

Red velvet ants are a type of solitary wasp, meaning that they do not live in colonies like other types of wasps. Each female builds her own nest, which she uses to lay her eggs and raise her young.

If you come across a red velvet ant, it is best to leave it alone and give it plenty of space. While their sting can be painful, it is not usually life-threatening unless the individual has an allergic reaction. Remember to respect these interesting insects and to keep a safe distance if you happen to encounter one in the wild. For professional assistance getting rid of red velvet ants, contact us today!

What are red velvet ants?

While called a red velvet ant, this insect is actually a type of wasp. The appearance of the red velvet ant consists of thick, velvety hairs all over its body interspersed with black on its abdomen. These insects have stingers and six legs, and males have a pair of black wings while females are wingless; female red velvet ants are the insects known for their painful stings, which earns them the name 'cow killers.' While red velvet ants are not known for being as aggressive as hornets and wasps, they can and will sting humans if you get too close or they feel otherwise threatened.

Are red velvet ants dangerous?

Red velvet ants can be dangerous pests to host around your property. Females of this species are the ones that sting, as male red velvet ants don't have stingers. The sting of the red velvet ant is fairly painful and, like most other wasp stings, can trigger reactions in those with allergy issues or those without preexisting allergies if enough stings are received.

You should seek medical attention to control symptoms of a red velvet ant sting, like severe pain that persists, trouble breathing, or difficulty swallowing.

Why do I have a red velvet ant problem?

Red velvet ants don't typically create their own nests or colonies like other wasps; they are classified as parasitic wasps because they invade the nests of other insects. You will likely find a red velvet ant problem on your property because these pests found another insect nest to inhabit, such as those of bumblebees, cicadas, or other wasps. From there, the red velvet ant will lay eggs that take over the nests and continue the life cycle.

Where will I find red velvet ants?

You can find red velvet ants hiding in open, sunny areas on your property, such as lawns, pastures, the edges of forests, and gardens. Red velvet ants are unlikely to invade human structures, but if they do, they will accidentally wander inside and stay near garages, basements, or other warm and secluded areas.

How do I get rid of red velvet ants?

Get rid of red velvet ants by trusting our team at Miche Pest Control to eradicate these pests. We'll waste no time identifying the source of your red velvet ant problems and working with you to craft treatment plans that totally eliminate them. No matter the size or scale of your red velvet ant problem, we'll be able to help you reclaim your property from these potentially dangerous stinging insects.

How can I prevent red velvet ants in the future?

If you want to prevent red velvet ants in the future, you can follow our easy deterrent tips below to make your property less hospitable to these pests.

  • Seal gaps around windows, doors, and your foundation to keep these pests from accidentally wandering inside.
  • Make sure all abandoned insect nests around your property are safely removed to stop red velvet ants from inhabiting them.
  • Work with Miche Pest Control to remove active insect infestations that create nests these pests can potentially move into.

For more information on protecting your D.C., MD & VA property from red velvet ants or for assistance removing infestations of these pests, contact Miche Pest Control today.

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