Getting Rid of Ants
To get ants at home is as easy as a piece of cake. They can be applied to almost anything, figuring out who ate a sticky snack on the couch, sweets, busting the person who wore muddy shoes into the house, and more importantly, identifying the entry point of an army of ants invading your house. To get rid of them might be hard and not easy, but getting to know some tips and recipes may help you a lot.
When you have ants in your house, detective work is an integral part of eliminating them, but there is actually much more to it. Finding the most effective treatment for ants depends on the specific type that you have invading your house. Each species has different behaviors, preferences in food, and remedies that will be effective in keeping them out of your home. You might have knocked over some fruit juice and not properly cleaned it up, leaving a small pool hidden somewhere behind a kitchen appliance. That is all it takes to attract these pests. They are easily drawn to food waste and spillages, especially sweet things like juice, honey and sugar. It then only takes a few to get into your home by a small gap in your door or a crack in your wall and you have yourself a fast-spreading infestation that can be a potential nightmare to control.
Types of Ants
Carpenter ants are commonly found around homes in wooded areas. They do not carry bait back to their nests, so you have to kill them at the source. This means you have to do a little detective work to find the nest. Do not bother using the borax/sugar bait – they will just feed on it like little piggies at a trough.
They will typically live outdoors very close to the house, and eventually enter your house in search of food and water.
Carpenter Ant Remedy
The best natural remedy that is found for eradicating carpenter ants is Diatomaceous Earth (DE). DE is completely natural and organic. It is made from tiny skeletal remains of algae-like plants. DE is a lethal dust for insects. Its microscopic razor sharp edges will cut through the body of insects, drying them out and killing them. If ingested by carpenter ants, it will shred their insides. There are different types of DE, so keep in mind you must get food grade DE for pest control. Food grade DE is completely safe to be used around kids and pets and can be sprinkled around the home and yard without posing a threat. In order to get rid of a colony of carpenter ants, DE must be injected directly into the nest. We used a medicine dropper to squirt dry DE into cracks where we found them nesting.
Odorous House Ants
This type of ant is attracted to sweets, and are commonly found in the kitchen. Odorous house ants will leave a chemical pheromone trail wherever they travel. If you kill them, other ants will simply follow the trail and show up in the same places. For this reason, the entire colony must be killed. When you see the first few ants, you can sponge them (and the surrounding area) with soapy water to eliminate the pheromone trail. Immediately work to figure out where they’re getting into your house, and begin placing homemade ant bait at the entry points.
Borax will kill odorous house ants, and powdered sugar will attract them. Make a homemade bait by thoroughly mixing one part borax with three parts powdered sugar. Fill tiny containers with this homemade bait and place them as close to the place where you suspect ants are entering your house. If you see trails of ants, place small containers of the mixture directly in their path. This prevents most of them from traveling all around your house if they have easy access to this sugary treat.
- Spray vinegar near baseboards, in any cracks, and on countertops where they may be traveling. You can allow vinegar to dry on surfaces or wipe with a clean cloth – this eliminates their chemical trail and will deter some of the stragglers. Repeat several times a day.
- Practicing good sanitation practices is one of the best ways to make your home less attractive to ants. Keep spills, crumbs, and garbage cleaned up in the kitchen. Make sure all food – especially anything sweet – is stored in tightly sealed containers or zip-top bags. They will get into things like jars of honey that have drips on the side or around the lid, so sealing the jar in a zip-top bag will protect it.
DIY Natural Remedies
Here are some remedies DIY Natural to treat ant problems:
- Some ants like protein and grease. Mix a spoonful of peanut butter with 1 tablespoon of sugar and 1 teaspoon of borax. Using a plastic straw, tap the end into the mixture repeatedly until the straw is full of the mixture. Cut the straw into ½-inch pieces and place them next to ant trails.
- Put a few drops of peppermint essential oil on a cotton ball and place in areas ants are crawling around.
- Sprinkle cinnamon (being careful not to get it on things that will stain) near entry points.
- Some ants dislike baby powder. Sprinkle around perimeter of house or indoors where ants are entering your house.
- Rub a little Vaseline near the areas they are entering the house.
Another Recipe for Getting Rid of Ants
- 1 cup sugar
- 3 tablespoons boric acid
- 3 cups warm water
1. Mix the sugar and boric acid well.
2. Add the warm water slowly, mixing all the while so it won’t be too lumpy.
3. Store in a jar until ready to use.
4. When ready to use, put cotton into the top of a jar lid to fill it and then saturate the cotton to the top.
5. Place it in the location where it is needed.
6. Note: This solution will keep for a long while. A good technique is to drip a drop or two over the edge of the lid to rest on the counter so the ants will find the solution sooner. It sometimes takes a little while for them to find it, but find it they will. When they do, do not disturb them as they drink. They will hang over the edge of the lid and drink for a while and then take it back to the nest killing the colony. Almost overnight they will be gone.