If you are a homeowner, odds are that you will have to deal with an ant infestation at some point in your life. Seeing one or two of these little guys around the home, carrying crumbs or other pieces of food, is never pleasant, but when the situation goes from a couple of ants to an infestation, it’s time to bring out the big guns. In this article, we’re going to cover some effective techniques for dealing with an ant infestation.
Long-term strategy – Cleanliness
Ant infestations happen because the ants are able to find food sources in your home. Whether it is sugary liquids, protein, or any other kind of food scraps, ants will love them and establish a colony where they can be found in relative abundance. As such, it’s important to keep your home, and kitchen in particular, as clean as possible. This is a great long-term strategy because it cuts out the only reason the colony exists – food. You also want to make sure that the food that you do keep in cupboards and cabinets is sealed and cannot be easily accessed.
When we hear traps, we usually think of physical devices, but when it comes to ants, you are setting up chemical traps. Ants will find poisoned food and distribute it throughout the colony, killing many of the members in the process. However, the main target is the queen. If the queen is poisoned the colony can no longer reproduce and it will eventually die out.
Beware of carpenter ants
Carpenter ants are a particularly dangerous species, and they are similar to termites, in the sense that they feed on the wood of the home. They can do extensive damage. You can identify carpenter ants by their large size (they are the largest ant species in the US), and by their black coloration, although some species may have a reddish or yellowish hue. If you have had water leak issues in the past, and you notice ants that fit the description above, it’s important to contact a professional.
Some ant species can protect themselves against poisoned bait
Since poisoning the queen will destroy a colony, some ant species have evolved a protection against poisoned food. The rock ant for example uses its workers to store food in their abdomen, which is then regurgitated in order to feed other ants in the colony. This serves two purposes – any poison that reaches these ants is eventually diluted because they will eat from many food sources, and if a poison is too potent, the storage ant will die before the food reaches the queen or a larger segment of the colony.
Do you suspect that you have an ant infestation?
While they are not the most dangerous pests out there, ants can be quite a nuisance. If you have an ant infestation and you have tried everything but were not able to get rid of it, contact us today and we will send over an expert to help you out.