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here is a lot to admire ants for; they eat other pests, work together and made great stars in “A Bug’s Life.” However, they make awful houseguests. They are uninvited, yet they get into everything and aren’t in a hurry to leave. Besides damaging your furniture, they might also contaminate countertops with salmonella or E. coli. Here is how to keep ants off your house.
1. Identify the type of ants you have
Although there are thousands of ant species, only about 25 of these are common in households. The most invasive of these include the Argentine ants, carpenter ants, pavement ants and odorous ants. Identifying the exact type is essential since it will help you know what they are feeding on and where they are coming from.
Carpenter ants are the worst; they destroy your home from the interior by burrowing through the wood. Pavement ants are black or brown, and they make nests outside, from where they get into your house. Odorous ants get their name from their terrible stink; they smell like coconut if you squish them. As for Argentine ants, they are brown and small, and they live indoors near moisture or food.
2. Seal all crevices
Yes, ants are minute, but it’s still advisable to seal off all openings. You can use steel wool or clear caulk, especially if you observe a trail of marching on it. Replacing worn door sweeps and repairing torn screens is another way to handle the situation.
3. Put away all possible food sources
Ants have a taste for food just like humans. They enjoy fats, proteins, and sweets. However, they are also after groceries, so make sure they are in airtight containers. Clean spilled drinks and clean up crumbs swiftly. Take note of the favorite list on the ant menu, like oil spills, and grease sputter in the kitchen.
4. Put out bait
You might be tempted to squash every ant that crosses your path, but that won’t work. Only ten percent of an entire ant colony is outside foraging at a given time. This means that 90 percent of the territory is hidden away.
You should address the issue at its source. One way of doing this is getting a bait trap. The worker ants will carry the bait back to their colony and share it with the other 90 percent. That way, it will be dispersed, and the ants will be killed off ASAP. Even better, other ants will pursue pheromones back to the trap, thus speeding up the process. However, you shouldn’t spray pesticide on the ant trail since it will mess up the chain reaction.
5. Call in a professional
Usually, calling in pest control pros is the best way of getting rid of ants. The ant removal experts will trace them back to the colony where they originate and eliminate a majority of the ants. A professional is especially a great idea when dealing with carpenter ants since they might cause severe structural damage.