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Ant Infestation In New York Apartments

By: Yuer Li

Ants seem to be abundant in New York City. They are even found in some high places, such as the 6th floor! Before, ants didn’t prefer the huge concrete cramped buildings we humans live in, preferring parks and yards.

But these aren’t just New York City wannabe ants—they're immigrants from Europe! Introducing...Lasius emarginatus! Nicknamed the ManhattAnt, these ants have reddish-brown thoraxes and abdomens, and they are thriving. One characteristic of these ManhattAnts is they can climb really high. They forage from April to June, but they are less active in July, which is a plus!

These ants are here to look for water. Surprisingly, this species of ant is not interested in consuming your crumbs. However, they are interested in eating other insects, and honeydew, which is a type of sugar made by aphids and tree pests.

You can easily get rid of these ManhattAnt pioneers by laying down liquid ant baits. Jerry Walsh of Mayday Hardware in Prospect Heights says he does not recommend powerful ant baits because the ants will not die on the spot. Instead, they will carry the poison with them. You do not want accidental stomach poisoning.

There have been efforts to track these ManhattAnts. Samantha Kennett is a graduate student at Kennesaw State University in Georgia, and she studies this specific type of ant. She started an online initiative called Project ManhattAnt, which purpose of this is to track the ants as it silently spreads. Some have spread to New Jersey and as far as Long Island.

Article: In N.Y.C. Apartments, the Ants Go Marching Up - The New York Times.pdf

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