The first, and perhaps most important part of ant control, is attitude. And if you have an ant infestation, be under no illusion, you are at war. If you think of your home as your castle, then good, it should not be difficult to understand that an invading army has got inside the walls. Okay, so that might be a bit dramatic, but actually thinking of it as a war might help to make sense of the methods that have to be undertaken. And if you have young children, it might make it fun for them to think of it that way, and mean they will do all the things they will have to do, like clearing up crumbs.
Unlike a lot of other pests, ants are not inherently dislikeable. Not many people are scared of ants, and if you find one crawling on you when you're sitting on a park bench, it's no big deal. In their natural habitat, ants are actually very useful. Breaking down organic matter, aerating the soil, helping to make sure other insect populations don't get out of control, these are just some of the things that ants can do. However, they do not recognise a human habitat when they see one, and they don't care. Whether it feels odd to them to march across such a smooth surface as a counter or table top, or if
Over 15,000 species of ant exist, but there are only about 40 found regularly in the UK? these randomly placed globules of food scattered haphazardly around arouse curiosity... well, we'll never know, but probably not, and they certainly don't care. And while, obviously, it is easy to get rid of each individual ant as you see them, they will keep coming back if you don't destroy the source. This is what ant control is about, and to win this war you are going to have to fight smart, and you are going to have to fight mean. Over 15,000 species of ant exist, but there are only about 40 found regularly in the UK? However, if you want to have the most efficient and destructive fighting force on your side, you want to call professionals. They will come to your house, get rid of the infestation with chemicals that are specially formulated for the job and take steps to make sure they do not come back. In the meantime, however, you are on your own, so here are some ant control tips to help you get rid of the menace of ants.
As always, of course, the best form of defence is offence and if you want to get rid of the invading army completely, you have to get rid of their base, the ant nest. If you do find it then pour lots of boiling water over it (this is the fighting mean part!) because, although ants will survive in normal water, they cannot survive boiling water. Generally you will find ant nests around the roots of plants, however sometimes you will find them in cavity walls. If, however, you cannot find the nest, then one option is to try to bait the ants out. So for example you put out some maple syrup but you put some boric acid powder in it so that when the ants come to have their feast they won't last long. And at least they'll die with a smile on their face! The potential danger of using baits, however, is that it might attract even more ants from neighbouring colonies.
In chess, the king is the most important piece and doesn't move around much, but if you kill him you win. Well, in the game of ant control, you have to kill the queen. You can try telling the ants that you've won just before you're ready to kill her and see if they'll concede defeat, but chances are you'll actually have to make that move. But that's if you can find her.
The queen tends to hide deep down in the nest though, and might not even be killed by pouring boiling water into the nest so don't expect that to be the end of it, you will probably still need to get a professional in to finish the job. There are, however, a number of other moves you can make to prevent the ants from winning. Most of them are pretty intuitive, such as maintaining the best standards of cleanliness. If you take away the invading army's food supply, they're not going to last very long. This includes keeping the sink clean as well as pet bowls. In fact, if you want to set a little trap, then you can float your pet bowl inside another bowl which is filled with soapy water, so that if the ants try to get across they will be stranded. Or more to the point, did he know? After mating with the queen, which they do in-flight, a male ant will die?
Or more to the point, did he know? After mating with the queen, which they do in-flight, a male ant will die? You also want to get all the little crevices that allow ants into your home sealed up, and the best thing for that is caulk. Also, cornmeal is a good material to put down where you know ants are going to go since, after eating it they will die, but it is not dangerous to people or other animals.
The way ant colonies work is that they send out scouts who find sources of food and water and then tell the colony about them. The way scouts find the colony again, and let the other ants know where to go to find water and food, are scent trails. Therefore, you want to eliminate the scent trails as well as, of course, the scouts if you see them. How you destroy scent trails is by washing areas around food they have found with soapy water or bleach solution. If you can track it back to their home then all the better, and from there you can use materials such as chilli powder, Vaseline or boric acid to deter entry.
However, to get a proper assessment of which species of ant you have to deal with, as well as the best way to deal with them, you will have to contact a qualified expert, who will be able to formulate the best ant control plan for you.
Click for more info...