5 Ways To Deal With An Ant Infestation In Your Home
By Linda Williams
The majority of homeowners struggle with the occasional ant invasion here and there. Whether you spot this unwanted pest, carrying leftover food or lingering in sticky spots, these insects are nothing short of a nuisance. However, if this problem turns into an infestation, it may be time to get your pest control strategy into gear and think outside the box.
Here are five important tips and tricks that you should keep in mind when an ant infestation occurs. If you still can’t cope with unassisted help, turn to local professionals like those at Moxie Pest Control, who can apply professional pesticides and destroy mass-proportioned ant colonies with a single splash.
Study the most common types of ants
While house ants are the most common species of ant to invade your home, there are other species with unique and sometimes dangerous properties that a homeowner should be wary of.
Carpenter ants fall into the latter category. The much larger carpenter ant can do more damage to the stabilizing structures of your home that make it safe for humans. Left untreated, these household pests can cause your home to crumble into dust, resulting in thousands of dollars in repair costs.
While house ants are undeniably a nuisance, they have a reputation for being harmless. When sent to your garden or backyard, they can even help the ecosystem by aerating the soil and transporting seeds deep into the soil.
Keep your house clean
Whether you’re looking for solutions to your current ant infestation problem or just want to know what steps to take to prevent future infestation, high levels of cleanliness is a suggestion you’ve probably come across. While keeping your home clean may seem obvious, it really is the most effective way to eradicate ants and household pests in general.
Since ants notoriously feed on sugary liquids, proteins, and whatever scraps of food they can find, it’s important to tidy up your kitchen after you’ve finished eating. Unfortunately we have to store food, cook and eat somewhere. Hence, the kitchen is usually the primary target for those little annoyances. When a colony scout discovers a source of food, no matter how tiny it may seem, he will give instructions to the colony, made up of hundreds of worker ants, to invade your home.
Of course, if it is at all possible to cut these ants off at the source, this is the best option, let alone the most efficient. When you hire a professional pest control provider, these fully trained experts will target the colony in question rather than annihilating those household invaders one by one to save time and ensure long-term success.
Set ant traps
When we think of setting traps for pests in our homes, we usually think of mechanical or sticky devices that are used to trap an animal and eliminate its ability to escape. However, when it comes to ant traps, these pest control devices come in many forms and require a little more sophistication.
The most efficient ant trap is to set up a baited source of food for the ants in the hope that it will poison as many ants in the colony as possible. This strategy is incredibly successful because of the way ant colonies work. Every ant living in the colony (except the queen) works to serve the collective vision and ensure their well-being. Hence, feeding can be a very efficient method of controlling the colony population due to the presiding groupthink mentality.
Pay attention to wooden surfaces
As the name suggests, these tiny carpenters feed on damp, damaged, and rotting wood surfaces, from your windows to the legs of your chair. If you live in a notoriously humid climate like Florida, your home is at greater risk of an ant infestation.
Regardless of the climate in your region, removing the damp surfaces in your home will save you the cost of damage in the future, albeit not always free and easy. Fortunately, there are different products for caring for your wooden surfaces. If used strategically, you can guarantee that these carpenter ants will not prevail.
Beware of insect repellants
While pesticides and repellants seem like a simple solution to treating your ant infestation forever, insect repellants aren’t permanent, just temporary patches that are often placed over the underlying problem.
Remember, problems like stagnant water, unsealed food containers, and fragrant houseplants lead to massive ant colonies, not individual groups of ants that a pesticide may or may not kill.
First and foremost, the biggest problem with these chemicals is the danger they can pose to humans, which makes your brand selection a crucial factor in the success of your pest control strategy. If you choose to go down this DIY route, here is an excellent list of products to consider.
While the occasional sight of ants may seem innocent, an ant infestation can have dire consequences for the average household, ranging from property damage to anaphylactic shock for those allergic to the fire ant bite. To minimize the risk of ant invasion, implement daily cleaning routines, install ant traps, and hire pest control professionals for preventive maintenance.