Ants are one of the most common household pests and are responsible for a large percentage of calls to pest control companies. It seems that no matter how many ants you kill, there are thousands more to take their place. Good ant control must use a multi-faceted approach. Let’s look at various ways to keep ants out of your home for good.
The first step in well-rounded ant control is prevention. As with most household pests, sanitation is key to prevention. Living creatures need food, water, and shelter to survive, so eliminating these things will make your home less desirable for them. This can be done by keeping your home clean. Keep the floors swept or vacuumed, wipe down all surfaces, take out the trash regularly, and keep food containers sealed. On the outside of your home, it is important to seal everything the best you can. Start by filling cracks and crevices in your home or foundation. Next, check your doors and windows to ensure that your screens are in good condition and your weather stripping is intact. Keep up these practices to greatly reduce your household pests, including ants.
Even after you have taken preventative measures, you may still find yourself with an ant problem. By understanding ants and their behavior, you are more likely to solve the problem. Ants are social creatures that live in large colonies. The ants that you see traipsing through your home are worker ants. They find food and take it back to the colony. You can spray and kill as many of these ants as you can and still not find relief from the problem because you have not gone to the source. The queen ant is responsible for reproduction, and a colony cannot live without the queen. Finding and eliminating the queen can be tricky since she rarely leaves the nest and is most often found at the center. Again, understanding behavior can really help you out. Ants go in search of food. When they find food, they will carry it back to the nest, leaving behind a scent trail for other ants to follow. These trails of ants will likely lead you back to the nest. Once you have found the nest, you can go about eliminating the ants.
Once you have identified ant trails, you can place ant bait stations along the route that the ants are following. The worker ants will carry the bait back to the nest to feed the queen, thus killing the queen, future ants, and the colony. When used correctly, ant baits are safe to use around pets and children, so they are a good option. Once you have found the nest, you can also use an ant spray insecticide on the nest.
To protect your entire home and keep ants from coming indoors for an extended period of time, you can use a non-repellant residual insecticide around the entire perimeter of your home, especially around entry points. This will create a barrier from entry that will not only keep out ants, but most other types of bugs and insects as well. With any chemical treatment, be sure to read and follow all label directions and safety precautions.
If you are unsure about how to proceed with your ant problems, Midwest Pest Control can help. We will come out to your property, identify the species of ant that is causing trouble, and walk you through the entire process of getting them under control. We want to be your trusted Tulsa ant control specialists.