What’s Bugging You This Holiday Season?
Is an army of ants marching toward the cookie jar on your counter top or some sweet prize in your pantry? Are ants threatening to spoil your Holiday Happiness and Merry Joy? If fire ants plague your yard, lanai or patio and you’re tired of getting stung by the tiny attackers maybe it’s time to take greater measures and fight back! Lenny’s Pest Control is all about keeping you informed, educated and prepared to exterminate, eliminate and de-bug your home as effectively and efficiently as possible. Today we bring you some very interesting and hopefully helpful details on those dreaded house ants!
With over 12,000 species of ants in the world, only a small handful of them insist on invading our homes in search of something tasty from either the sweet foods or flesh and greasy foods. Ants commonly found indoors include the Argentine ant, the pharaoh ant, the thief or grease ant, the pavement ant and the odorous house ant. And if you’re really unlucky, you might have the carpenter ant, an ant insistent on destroying the wood that holds up your house, so get professional help fast in that case!
Getting rid of ants is never a simple proposition, despite their simple nature. Luckily for you, you’re trying to get rid of sugar ants, and they are probably the most simple-minded ant species. What do they eat? They eat sugar, sweets, and other scraps of food. This is why we call them sugar ants. Of course, the term sugar ant is actually a misnomer. The real Sugar Ant is a native of the Australian continent, and exclusive to that part of the world; you won’t find them here. The ants you’re probably having trouble with are Pavement Ants and Pharaoh Ants.
Little black ants have also garnered the name “sugar ant,” though their real name is, well, Little Black Ants. Not a lot is known about Little Black Ants, except that they eat just about anything (including other insects) and they really like rotting wood and dark spaces. Getting rid of little black ants, however, despite how little is known about them from a biological perspective, is as easy as getting rid of sugar ants. Sweet baits can be used to control little black ants indoors, and protein baits can be used to control little black ants outdoors. We have some recommendations below to help you in your battle against the ants but please remember that we’re here to help de-bug your home and make your Holidays a lot more joyous. Our experienced and knowledgeable pest control technicians know exactly what to look for and have all the right techniques to protect and exterminate your home from all unwanted bugs – including ants!
Here are just a few tips to help you keep the sugar ants, little black ants and any other kind of ants away from your kitchen this Holiday season.
- Heed the scouts. The first signs of ants in your kitchen is a warning to you. These are the scout ants checking out your kitchen for signs of suitability to invade and their job will be to return back to the nest to inform the other ants that your kitchen is blooming with potential. Waste no time in getting to work cleaning your kitchen, sealing all food and removing all sources of sticky, sweet, greasy and flesh foods from their access.
- Don’t have any dirty dishes left out. Wash all dishes as they’re used or place them into the dishwasher and shut the door tight. Wipe down all of your cupboard and bench-top surfaces with vinegar; this cleans, disinfects and leaves a nasty smell as far as ants are concerned. Remove all sources of garbage and keep the kitchen bin shut tightly. Rinse all recyclable containers before putting them into storage.
- Sweep and vacuum the kitchen area daily.
- Rinse off any jar, container or bottle that has a sticky or leftover residue. In particular, check jam/jelly jars, sauce bottles, pickle bottles, cordial bottles and honey and syrup containers. Place your honey jar and any other very ant-attractive foods inside a bowl of water (see How to keep ants out of honey and How to remove ants from cat food for more details.
- Seal every food item in containers. The containers need to be of the sort that ants cannot get into. Be relentless about this for 3-7 days. The ants, having nothing to eat, will go elsewhere. This works because the ants are following the chemical trails left by other ants, who did find food.
- You may also need to seal fragrant items such as cleaning powders, deodorants, and the like in case these attract the ants’ initial attention. Just be alert to any congregations around non-food sources.
For Fire ants you want to use a professional exterminator, such as Lenny’s Pest Control, specializing in their extermination. Fire ants in Southwest Florida rarely enter the home but if they do, get immediate help as they’re aggressive and their stings are painful and can trigger off an allergic reaction in susceptible people. This isn’t something you typically want to handle on your own.
Dealing with Carpenter ants is no laughing matter either. An invasion of carpenter ants in SWFL is serious as they can damage your house structure. Be alert for their invasion – piles of broken wings can be one sign and it is longer than most ants. You may also see their fecal pellets (these appear like sawdust) and they can sometimes be heard rustling in the walls. A professional pest control specialist will know exactly what and where to spray in order to get rid of every last one of these not so nice bugs!
Whether you currently have kitchen or patio ants or you want to protect your home against them, follow the tips included above and you’ll improve your chances of being ant free this winter. Lenny’s Pest Control is your trusted Ant and Bug Extermination expert in the Southwest Florida area – call us and we’ll take care of your kitchen ant right away!
Lenny’s Pest Control is all about educating you and helping you protect your home and space from unwanted, bugs and pests. We would love to come out to your home or business and inspect your property, give you an estimate and get your protected. Please give us a call at (239) 945-6543 for all your pest control needs in southwest Florida.
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