These Ants are Crazy for Electronics

In the southeastern United States, the fire ant is being displaced by Nylanderia fulva, more commonly known as the ‘crazy ant’ or ‘Rasberry crazy ant’, so named for Tom Rasberry, the US exterminator who identified it.

While they are not particularly choosy, one of their favorite habitats is electronics.  Only 1/8-inch (3.2 mm) in length, crazy ants will weasel their way into your electronic device.  They will feast on the electronics until, oops!,  they get electrocuted.  Once dead, the crazy ant gives off a chemical that other crazy ants are attracted to.  Pretty soon, you have a whole village of crazy ants living off the guts of your device.  They are also partial to electrical outlets and power cords.

They were first reported in the US in Houston, Texas in 2002.  They have since spread their domain to the US Gulf Coast, with twenty counties in Florida reporting active infestations.

Your run of the mill pesticides found in your local store are not effective in eliminating infestations.  If you see crazy ants, it’s time to call the exterminator.

4 thoughts on “These Ants are Crazy for Electronics”

  1. Hi Judy,
    I lived in Florida and got attacked by a bunch of fire ants one day. I know first-hand why they are called ‘Fire’ Ants and, nearly 20 years later, I still have the scars to prove it. That was an horrific experience.

    If anyone would have walked into the warehouse that day, they would, I am sure, still carry the image of a crazy naked white guy slapping himself all over.

    Interesting piece– thanks!

    If crazy ants bite electronics, and not me, then I like them better already 😉

  2. Hi Judy,
    Thanks for an interesting article. We, in Queensland Australia have our share of fire ants and the elimination program was working fine until more nests were found. It is necessary for construction companies to provide a certificate of treatment before a building permit is issued.
    With Termites and Fire Ants we could well do without “Electrical Ants”.


  3. At home we find ants in electrical outlets, steam irons, bathroom taps, just about anywhere and it’s a big nuisance.

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