Do You Have A Little Black Ant Infestation
The main sign of an infestation is spotting ants. Even if their nest is outside, they could still be invading your house. These ants enter homes searching for food and water. Its common to find their trails in kitchens and bathrooms. Check areas where moisture or food can accumulate including cabinets, sinks, and counters.
What Do Ants Eat
What do ants eat? Ants are scavengers and will eat almost anything. They will consume anything sweet like nectar, sugar, honey. But will even eat meat and plant vegetation so can destroy your loved plants or vegetables. They consume moisture, usually from their food or from due on the leaves of plants.
How Are Anthills Constructed In Lawns
Before we go into killing ants in your lawn, I think it is important to understand how an anthill is constructed. Anthills are a maze of tunnels and chambers that can stretch to over 3ft deep and 4ft wide. Impacting the entire colony with one application of anything will be nigh on impossible. It will require a regime of treatments to kill off the entire colony.
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Can Ants Cause Health Issues
Can ants cause health issues? Although ants are just a nuisance, they can pose serious health issues for the homeowner and their family. Did you know you may even catch E. coli from ants? Lets look into this a little more below.
As discussed above, ants will send out scouts looking for food and resources. Anthills in your lawn surrounding your home mean that ants will eventually end up in your home. As they roam all over the home, they pick up germs and bacteria, and this can get deposited onto food that you may not lock away in airtight containers.
The ants can contract other bacteria such as Salmonella, Shigella, and E.coli while they roam around bathroom areas in your home. Again these can be passed onto humans or your beloved pets as the ants clamber over the food and preparation areas of the kitchen.
Ants can also contract Staphylococcus, Streptococcus, and Clostridium. It is usually contracted from feces that the ants have crawled over outside. It again is passed on to you through food prep areas. You cannot catch any of these diseases through stings and bites.
When Do I Need To Call In A Pro To Deal With The Carpenter Ants
If this sounds like more work or more of a mess than you’re willing to make, then call in a professional. Even if you successfully get rid of the carpenter ant nest, there still might be more in your home. Call an exterminator to check that the nest is destroyed and to look for possible other nests. You should also call a pro if you haven’t been able to find the nest, but still see carpenter ants.
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Pharaoh Ant Indoor Nests
Pharaoh ants are well adapted for nesting and reproducing indoors. Indoors pharaoh ants create nests in inaccessible areas such as wall voids, behind baseboards, under floorboards, and even inside of furniture. Similar to ghost ants discussed above, pharaoh ants create new nests by the process of budding. The size of pharaoh ant colonies varies dependent upon factors such as space and availability of food and water. Pharaoh ant colonies are usually a few thousand workers, with the largest observed at a few hundred thousand pharaoh ants. There are usually several queens, or females capable of reproduction within a colony. Male pharaoh ants die within a few days of mating.
When space in the nest runs short or a more plentiful supply of food is found, the pharaoh ant nest splits through the process of budding. A queen, along with workers and some immature youth pharaoh ants will leave the main nest to form a daughter or subnest. Indoors, pharaoh ant nests are usually found in areas with a plentiful supply of food, water, and warmth. They have been located in light bulb sockets, potted plants, cracks and crevices in walls. Pharaoh ants are especially problematic for grocery stores, warehouses, commercial bakeries, factories, office buildings, food distribution facilities, and medical facilities. The design of these types of facilities provides endless opportunities for pharaoh ant nests.
Pharaoh Ants in Medical Facilities
How To Kill Small Black Ants
The most effective way to kill small black ants is to use ant baits. These baits will need to be placed where the ants foraging trails have been seen and can be placed indoors or outdoors. When treating for small black ants inside, you will want to set the bait stations in corners next to baseboards, on countertops, and anywhere else they have been observed foraging.
When treating for these pests outside, you can place the bait stations near the nest for better results. Nests are often easy to locate. However, if you cant find the colony, the bait can also be placed in the path or near the foraging trails. Whether inside or out, the ants will take this bait back to the rest of the colony, and it will eventually kill off all of the ants.
You can rest assured that ants will always be around, but you dont have to accept having them in your lawn, garden, or house. It may take more work, but taking the time to execute a preventative plan against ants and other pests will be well worth the effort. Protecting your home and your family from the threat of an ant invasion is possible as long as you prepare ahead of time.
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How Ants Live And The Affect They Have On Your Garden
Ants are social insects that form large, organised colonies. They build complex nests that often contain thousands of individuals.
Ant nests contain one or sometimes several fertile females called Queen Ants. They lay eggs in specific areas of the nest called Brood Chambers.
Most of the other ants in the colony are smaller females called Worker Ants whose job it is to protect, maintain and grow the nest.
There are other ants called Soldiers and Drones whose job it is to find and bring back food.
Ant nests are very complex structures. They contain nursery rooms where larvae are fed and looked after, food storages rooms and farming rooms. They even create tunnels just to help with airflow.
When In Doubt Call A Professional Ant Exterminator
Of course, the easiest way to get rid of ants in your lawn is to call a professional ant control expert. Depending on the type of ants living in your backyard, the exterminator may use one or several methods of ant extermination, choosing the most effective and least damaging treatment options. By calling an expert, you can minimize damage to your lawn, remove ant mounds in record time, and enjoy your lawn all summer long. Call Antworks today for an ant extermination quote!
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How Do I Get Rid Of Carpenter Ants
It’s not as easy as killing any ant you happen to see. Like all ants, carpenter ant colonies start with scout ants that forage your home for the best places to eat or hang out. Then, their buddies follow the trail once they’ve hit a good food source, building a nest nearby in your wall. If you’ve spotted a few stray carpenters, congrats, you’ve probably found these little explorers. Here’s what to do next:
Make a bait to find the nest. Pest experts advise setting out a bait for the ant to take back to the nest, so you can actually find the nest just by watching them. They’re attracted to sweets, so a little bit of jam or jelly can work. You can also mix equal parts sugar and baking soda, then place the mixture in a shallow dish. The sugar attracts the ants, but the baking soda will kill them naturally.
Eliminate scent trails. Carpenter ants rely on pheromone trails to find food sources and to travel. By cleaning surfaces where ants have traveled, you’ve destroyed this treasure map to your home. You can use essential oils like tea tree, lemon, orange, or cedarwood on a cotton ball to wipe down surfaces to interrupt these trails. Or, make a solution of one part dish soap to two parts water and pour into a spray bottle. You could also use a 50/50 solution of white vinegar and water.
Chemical Methods Of Killing Ants In Your Lawn
Despite being environmentally friendly, most natural methods take time to eliminate the ants in your lawn. The natural components used in these methods are not as lethal in destroying ants compared to using chemicals. Therefore, if you need instant results, you can turn to the chemical treatments discussed below.
Using Ant Hill Killer Treatments
Applying ant killer treatments is one way of killing antsoutdoors if youve numerous ant hills within your home. Although, you should bevery careful and wear protective clothing when applying this treatment becausethis technique involves using chemicals that may harm you if not handledproperly. There are two main types of ant killer treatments. They include:
- Anthill killer gels.
- Anthill killer poison
Anthill killer gels
Most garden centers sell an ant poison that comes in gel form. It works the same way as food-grade diatomaceous earth. Ants are attracted to this sweet gel, which is carried into the ant nest for the queen and her colony to feast upon. Despite being poisonous, the gel is environmentally friendly and doesnt affect your garden or lawn.
Anthill killer poison.
Ant killer poisons are mostly available in powder form. These forms of ant poison are best used on anthills since they affect plants and may alter the soil composition due to their toxicity. You should make the application into the nests after digging them open.
Using Ant Bait Stations
Applying Insecticides to Your Lawn
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How To Get Rid Of Flying Ants Ant Or Termite
Ants with wings are normal ants, however they are sexually mature and capable of reproducing. In general, ant colonies are comprised of female reproductives , female non-reproductives , and males. For most ant species, male ants only job is to mate, and then they die. They do not participate in the search for food, rearing the young, or building or defending the nest. A common way that ant colonies expand is by the nuptial flight. When conditions are right, winged females and winged males fly from the nest and mate. The male dies, and the female chews her wings off and burrows into the ground or a tree stump and lays her eggs. If her colony is successful, she is now the queen of this colony.
Winged ants are often confused with winged termites. Winged termites emerge in a similar fashion from their colonies and often warn us of a possible termite infestation with expensive structural damage to our homes. Winged ants will often be found in smaller numbers than a typical termite swarm, but there are some easy ways to tell them apart as well.
- Waist a winged ants waist is tapered and narrow a winged termites waist is broad and thick
- Antennae a winged ants antennae have a joint that makes the antennae appear to turn at a right angle a winged termites antennae are straight
- Wings a winged ants front wings are longer than the back wings a winged termites wings are the same size
Types Of Ants Youll Find In The Grass
Several ant species can reside in your yard. The exact varieties depend entirely on your climate and location, but the most common are easy to identify in grassy yards.
Prevalent ant species in yards include the mound ant, the farming ant, and the army ant.
Mound ants, also known as field ants, are some of the worst to deal with. They create gargantuan nests that can span several feet. Luckily, most stick to empty fields. But if you have a big enough yard, you may spot their mounds forming.
Farming ants are known for their cultivation of aphids. Aphids produce honeydew, which is a delicacy for this species and many others. By farming the aphids, they are notorious for spreading plant diseases and causing garden infestations.
Army ants are the aggressive little brown pests that flock to decaying bugs and dropped food. Theyre impressive scavengers that like to move in large numbers while they search.
Another common lawn ant you might encounter is the fire ant. They are reddish-brown and have a very painful sting. Fire ants can form sizable colonies in well-aerated soil and dirt-filled environments.
Your lawn can also contain home-invading species. Carpenter ants , black ants, ghost ants, pavement ants, and pharaoh ants are all common.
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How To Discourage Ants From Coming Back To Your Lawn
Discouraging ants from invading your lawn is not an easy task. Ants gravitate to well-draining soil, locations with ample access to food, and watered fields. Your lawn is the perfect place to set up a colony.
To prevent future infestations from occurring, you have to be proactive about making your yard as unappealing to these pests as possible.
Contrary to popular belief, you dont have to sacrifice lawn maintenance to keep it pest-free.
Start by sticking to a regular lawn maintenance schedule. Cut the grass frequently to prevent overgrowth and excessive shade. Keep the grass low to ensure that the soil is exposed to as much sunlight as possible.
If you have any sources of food that attract ants nearby, move them. Some common attractants are dirty garbage cans, compost piles, and loose trash.
Invest in a sealed garbage can to stop smells from percolating through the air. Then, move your compost away from your manicured lawn. Sealed compost bins that are lifted off the ground are available as well to minimize pest access.
Once you deal with any attractants, consider planting deterrents! Ant-repelling plants like mint, sage, rosemary, thyme, garlic, and more are perfect for keeping ants out. Fragrant flowers like marigold and lavender do just fine, too.
Most aromatic herbs and plants will work. Place those plants strategically around your yard to make it a no-go zone for ants.
Home Made Ant Killers Vs Professional Products
If you want to completely get rid of the ants in your lawn you need to target the source. In other words, the nest.
There are a few ways to kill ants nests which include home remedies and specific ant killers. Home remedies have their drawbacks and Id recommend you use a proper ant killer but in the interest of being thorough, Ill cover both.
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How Do I Find Ant Colonies
Ants are social creatures and live in large colonies. They are also hard workers and adhere to a rigid hierarchy. Ant colonies typically consist of a queen, who is responsible for laying eggs, males, whose primary job is mating, and worker ants. These take care of eggs while maintaining the nest and gathering food. One of the ways they do this is by burrowing tunnels to other areas.
Following trails of worker ants are one of the ways you are most likely to find the colony. Knowing where they like to hide is half the battle. The University of Missouri identifies four common types of ants and the most likely places for them to build colonies:
- Odorous house ants: While often found in homes, colonies are generally located outside. Look under stones, old bark, or areas of shallow soil
- Pavement ants: As their name implies, these can be found near sidewalks or paving stones
- Larger yellow ants: These nest in soil along your homes foundation
- Field ants: These include a variety of different species, including fire ants. They are easy to find due to their large mounds, which can measure up to one foot in diameter.
Carpenter ants are another common type of ant and one of the most destructive. Rather than spending time underground, they are likely to build colonies in decaying wood around your property or in old railroad ties used for landscaping.
How Ants Affect Your Lawn
Many ants build their nests in or under lawns. They prefer well-drained soil in lawns that dont suffer from compaction. This means even the best cared for lawns can fall victim to ant infestations.
Theyre not all bad though. They hunt other insects in your lawn and their nests can help with lawn aeration.
However, as they excavate the soil they leave it on the surface of your lawn. These ant hills can affect your lawn in a few ways
- They can make your lawn uneven
- Make mowing the grass difficult as the lawn mower blades get stuck on lumps of soil
- Kill the grass under the mounds of earth, especially if the grass is short
They also eat through the root zone of the grass as they build their colonies. This can result in patches of dead grass appearing.
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Prevention Is The Best Cure
Although you can use various products to kill ants, its unlikely that youll kill them all. If a queen survives, which is probable, youve only postponed your problem. Ants can be beneficial in the right place, so your best remedy is to prevent them from invading your property. If they do appear, then apply home remedies known to repel them. Make ants feel unwelcome enough, and theyll go away.
You can find further details of Ants Control here.
How To Control Ants
The first step in ant control is to identify them. Knowing which ant is present tells you where they like to nest and what they like to eat. Knowing this helps with the best way to control them.
The most effective way to control ants is to put insecticide into the nest and kill the queen. This may be done with a direct treatment or by using bait. Killing foraging workers has little effect as just a small percentage of ants are out of the nest at any given time.
- Sanitation is an important step to avoid attracting ants into a home. Store human and pet foods attractive to ants in insect-proof containers, like glass jars or plastic containers.
- Clean all kitchen surfaces regularly to remove food residue.
- Rinse recyclable containers before storing them.
Other nonchemical steps to discourage ants:
- Use a mild solution of vinegar and water to wipe ant trails to temporarily disrupt ant activity.
- Seal cracks that ants are using to enter the home. Because of their small size, this may not always be practical.
- Use sticky barriers or water moats containing soapy water to prevent ants from reaching plants or other items.
- Prune tree and shrub branches that touch the building to remove an easy route indoors.
- Remove debris that can encourage ant nests. This can include lumber, branches, tree stumps, and thick mulch and leaf litter next to buildings.
Honeydew, rarely other sweets.
Where they nest
Where they nest
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