Formica Ants in Turf


Formica ants produce a loose mound that might slightly resemble that of a fire ant mound, but these ants are quite large in comparison to small fire ants. These three species tend to build in the forest edge or at the interface between wooded and open areas which gives them a lot of interaction in the sprawling suburbs. Mounds and colonies can become huge over many years, if undisturbed.

Cultural Control

Just because there are ants in the yard, does not mean they need to be eliminated. Ants serve a useful role in the ecosystem. Frequent disruption of a mound by digging or flooding with a garden hose may not kill the colony, but could cause the mound to relocate to a less objectionable location.

Chemical Control

If you decide that you need to chemically control any of these ants, Sevin or Orthene are two possible choices that may be used for control directly on the mound. For Formica integra located next to a structure, a gel bait containing fipronil may be used. Bait stations should not be used in places where pets may have access. If you wish to use a bait, it should be one listed for sweet-loving ants and tested for attractiveness. Fire ant baits will not be attractive to these ants. Aloft is a good general nuisance ant product for professionals. For additional chemical choices, see the North Carolina Agricultural Chemicals manual.

Insecticide and Formulation

Amount per 1,000 sq ft

Precaution and Remarks

bifenthrin* (Menace, Talstar, others) F, GC; G form also available 0.5 to 1 fl oz Use GC formulation for golf courses.
carbaryl* (Sevin) 80 WSP 1 to 1.5 oz
chlorpyrifos* (Dursban) 2E, 4E, 2G, 50 WP, Pro See label For use on golf courses. See new label.

chlothianidin + bifenthrin (Aloft)





See label

0.27 to 0.44 fl oz

0.27 to 0.54 fl oz

1.8 to 3.6 lb

1.8 to 3.6 lb

cyfluthrin (Tempo 2) 0.143 fl oz Home lawns only.
cypermethrin* (Demon) TC See label
deltamethrin (Deltagard) G 2 to 3 lb/1,000 ft
fipronil 0.0143 G See label
hydramethylnon* (Maxforce G, Amdro) See label
lambda-cyhalothrin* (Battle, Scimitar, Cyonara) See label Do not make applications within 20 feet of any body of water. No reentry until spray has dried.

Written By

Photo of Dr. Rick BrandenburgDr. Rick BrandenburgExtension Specialist (Peanuts & Turf) & Department Extension Leader (919) 515-8876 rick_brandenburg@ncsu.eduEntomology and Plant Pathology - NC State UniversityPhoto of Dr. Terri BilleisenDr. Terri BilleisenExtension Associate tlhoctor@ncsu.eduEntomology and Plant Pathology - NC State University
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