The ants come marching, one by one, hurrah, hurrah…back into our homes where we don’t want them! Yes, ant season has returned and is in full swing here in the Lower Mainland of BC, and to be honest, we couldn’t be happier! It means more pest control work for us, and less worry for your sake.
You might be wondering, “How do those darn ants keep getting inside?!” There are a lot of reasons as to why, because there are a lot more ant species than you may realize and a lot more causes. By understanding what those causes are, and the types of species that apply, the greater understanding you will have of the following ant control tips we’re going to outline for you. Here are five ways you can keep ants less interested in your home and more interested in BC’s backyard (AKA in the woods, where they belong).
1. Be vigilant
This really is the best way you can identify a potential ant problem in the first place. Destroying the scout ants can go a long way; all it takes is one ant to see your house is a food source and they’ll bring their brothers, sisters, cousins, second cousins, third cousins, and even fourth and fifth cousins twice removed with them.
If you see even one ant in the vicinity, kill it! If you see a second or a third immediately after the fact… bad news, it’s too late. Time to call in your pest boss. Why? Because at that point, the infestation is already out of hand. And trust us, you do not want to leave an infestation alone!
2. Clean up your pantry
Ants infest for one sole reason: to ensure they have access to food at all times. Usually that means they’re after your food! All it takes is one improperly sealed container, food-splattered plates left out in the open after the party is over, or crumbs and spills left uncleaned, and the ants will know there is a food source; they are that smart.
If it’s been a while since you cleaned up your pantry or your trash disposal habits, now is a good time to do it! Put that mop to work and throw out the food that’s no longer tasty.
3. Clean up after yourself and your pets while you’re at it
While you’re cleaning out your pantry, do yourself a huge favour and clean up after yourself too. Ants thrive on spilled food and drinks; the messier you are at home, the more they love you! If you have teenagers who live with you and enjoy eating their food in their bedroom, you will have to show them what happens when they leave unwashed dishes lying around (hint: they start with the letter ‘a’ and end with “all over your bed”).
Another food source you need to watch out for are your pets. Yes, ants eat pet food too, and as cool as having an ant farm sounds we know some of you would rather not have these varmints as your new pet! Cleaning up after Fido has slobbered his breakfast doggy chow all over the floor or patio deck outside will also ensure your home stays pest-free (and not just from ants, but from all kinds of varmints big and small!).
4. Destroy the nest
This tip only applies to those who have stumbled upon the ant’s nest itself. If this is you, what you need to do next is destroy that nest.
Hot water boiled from the kettle usually works to drown the ants and destroy their home.
Make sure you kill the queen—she’s the primary reason as to why ants have decided your home is the best.
5. Let your pest boss do the dirty work
Some ant infestations like carpenter ants and fire ants need to be addressed right now. Like, right now. Not later that same evening, or in a few days. We’re talking right now. I mean, do you really want to become the queen ant’s human slave this year? We didn’t think so. So, don’t procrastinate if you find more than one or two ants in your home. Call your pest boss. We’ll get you, varmints!
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