Ah, spring! The flowers in bloom, the cheerful tune of birdsong…the ants? This is the time of year when ants will venture into homes in search of enough food to feed their hungry colonies.
By taking a few proactive steps to prevent ants from entering your home this spring, you will save yourself a lot of trouble. Keeping ants away is much easier than trying to get rid of them after an infestation.
Know Your Enemy
Ants are much more intelligent and complicated than most people give them credit for. These tiny insects work as a team to build colonies, take care of their young, and locate food. Scout ants leave a scent trail so that they can easily find their way back home. When a scout finds a viable source of food, it leaves another scent trail on its way back. Other ants pick up on the scent and know it leads to a food supply. This means, if you see one ant in your home, it could turn into thousands if you’re not careful.
Eliminate Food Sources
What may be nearly imperceptible to you—a tiny crumb or a drop of syrup—could be a veritable feast for these uninvited guests. Wipe down surfaces daily, clean spills right away, and keep leftover food in sealed containers. An ant has a wicked sweet tooth so keep candies and other temptations well sealed.
If scout ants can’t food in your home, they’ll have no reason to return.
Use Diatomaceous Earth
Diatomaceous earth is an effective defense against ants. Diatomaceous earth, or DE, is a fine powder that kills insects after they crawl over it. Sprinkle DE around your front door and other access points.
It’s a safe, all-natural alternative to store-bought chemical sprays that contain harsh ingredients.
You can find many types of ant traps online and at your local hardware store. You can place the ant traps around your home, and the ants will find the traps before they have a chance to invade. Read the label of any product before you buy it. If you have pets or children in your home, you don't want to use something that could be potentially harmful or toxic to them.
Some ant traps contain a poison that the ants take back to their colonies. Others trap the ants until you collect the trap and dispose of it. If you are not sure where to begin, you can buy one or two kinds to see which one works the best.
Contact a Professional
DIY prevention and other steps you take on your own can help deter pests, but at-home ant prevention only goes so far. Contact an expert if you want the best possible defense against ants. A pest control expert can come to your home and help you decide how to approach the situation.
A professional can spot issues you might have overlooked and will contain the threat before it progresses. A pest control expert will also come up with a plan to help keep the pests away for good.
There’s never a guarantee that ants won't invade your home, you can do many things to reduce their odds of making it onto your property. Keeping your home clean and setting traps are smart ways to discourage ants from launching an invasion.
Of course, ants aren’t the only critters that’ll try making themselves at home. Spring and summer bring bees, spiders, mosquitos and other nuisances out of the woodwork. If you want them evicted, contact the professionals at Accel Pest & Termite Control online or by phone at (757) 384-1302.