To get your ant problem under control, inspection is an important first step.
To find ant nests, follow their trails. Ants lay down a chemical pheromone trail along their established routes to and from a food source so other ants can easily find the food.
Inside a house, inspect along the carpet edges, doors, windows, and all areas of the kitchen. The easiest way to find a trail to the nest is to watch where ants go after reaching the food source. If you are targeting Carpenter ants, inspection at night is more effective since the larger Carpenter ant is nocturnal. You can spot Carpenter ants emerging from damaged wood inside the house, or foraging outside in woodpiles, rotted or water-damaged wood, and tree stumps.
Outside the house, inspect around foundation walls, areas of vegetation, and mulch. Any vegetation found near patios and walls may hide some Ant nests or their trails. Check under any item that is on the ground. Some ant nests are well hidden.
- Follow the trail to find the nest.
- Treat the nest directly if possible or use bait or non-repellent insecticide around the perimeter of the house and on the ant trails.
Ant Control Tips and Strategies
There are two main types of ant problems that are commonly encountered with an ant problem.
- Ants that live outside and forage inside
- Ants that already have a nest built inside
Your ant control strategy should depend on the type of infestation and the type of ant that is responsible. Identifying which type of ant you have is helpful, but may be difficult without a magnifying glass. It is also helpful to use a magnifying glass to inspect ant trails and nests.
To rid your home of ants, you must eliminate the colonies or nests. Some treatments, such as insecticides sprayed on ant trails, kill only a few foraging worker ants. They do not eliminate colonies. In fact, such treatments can sometimes make the problem worse by causing a colony to split into two or more separate colonies.
Best ant control is achieved by observing and eliminating forging ants as well as finding all the ant colonies and treating them with right type of insecticides.