Everyone has experienced an ant infestation at any point in their lives, and even though the vast majority of ants don’t do any real harm, it is annoying to have a colony of insects marching around your home.
Ants are quite lovely animals, and they will do some of your gardenings for you, assuming the role of controlling pests, and aerating the soil. But even though this is nice for people with gardens, having them inside your home is a whole different story.
Carpenter ants inside your house are particularly bad since they might cause damage to wooden furniture in your home. And the rest can help spread a lot of bacteria around the surfaces in your home. So, how to control ants in your home?
Understanding Ant Colonies
Ants are pretty organized, and they are social creatures. In a general way, they live in colonies in which every individual plays a different role. The queen or queens have the function of reproducing, and to do so, they live in a hidden nest, assuring the continuity of the colony.
There can be millions of ants in a colony, and the vast majority are worker ants, and the older ones go out in the world to bring back food to the nest. So, what attracts ants into your house? Well, they are looking for food spills and food crumbs.
Spray pesticides are not the answer if you are trying to get rid of ants in your home, because they are smart creatures that establish trails from their nest to your house, and they always go back to the nest because that’s where their queen lives.
If you use the spray to kill those worker ants, the queen will give birth to more and more, and you will never see the end of it. The best way to get rid of this issue is to find the queen – but this is no easy task. So here are six tricks on how to get rid of ants.
1. Identify Their Trails
If you want to find the nest where the queen lives, you need to be able to track down the ant trails they use to move back and forth. Why do ants enter your house? Because they are looking for food, and as soon as they get even the tiniest crumb, they will try and carry it back to their nest.
In their course, they leave behind a chemical trail for other ants to follow. If you can find their path, you can leave poisoned food as ant bait waiting for them, and they will take it back to their queen.
2. Leave Baits To Attract The Ants
It is tempting to use ant repellent to deal with this plague, but the truth is that the worker ants will soon be replaced with new ones, so there is no point and no progress in using chemicals. Leave them a bait instead – you can purchase granulate baits made from boric acid, or liquid bait instead.
Make sure to place your bait near an ant trail, but somewhere where children and pets can’t reach them. Make sure to clean your surfaces so that they will have nothing else available to carry back to their nest.
3. Practice Patience
People who look at how to eliminate ant infestations are usually looking for a quick fix. Still, if you want effective and lasting results, you will have to be patient – it can take many days to eliminate all the ants, or even weeks, depending on how large the colony is, and how many queens it has. Be patient! You will start noticing the results.
4. Use Pesticides In Your Garden, But Be Careful
If you follow the trails and reach the conclusion that there is an outdoor nest outside, you can always choose to apply liquid pesticide directly to the nest, in the hope it will reach deep enough to get to the queen.
However, you should first be sure that the colony you are attacking is the one invading your home since some ants are pretty innocent creatures and amazing “garden tenants.” Plus, these pesticides can affect other insects because they are so strong. So be sure to always follow the directions written on the label.
5. Clean Your House
Like we have stated before, ants will come into your house for one thing and one thing only – food. If you live in an unkept environment, you are more likely to receive those unwanted guests.
Invest some time into house cleaning – sweep the floors properly, clean all of your surfaces with adequate cleaning products, and seal your foods. If you already have an infestation, do not clean the ant trails, since it will make it harder for you to put an end to it.
However, if you don’t have ants marching throughout your house, keep it clean and tidy – a clean house is the best natural ant repellent.
6. Seal All The Entries
One of the simplest ways to control little ants is to seal all the points where they can enter. Of course, they are super small, and they can get inside through minor cracks, but you can minimize that risk.
Seal your doors and windows, as well as other possible entrances like pipes and wire entry points. Check your house for tiny cracks and fix those as well. It’s up to you to turn your home into an ant fort!