Ants are one of the most annoying pests. If you try and deal with the problem yourself, homeowners, in many cases no matter what you do, they always seem to come back!
To successfully control ants you need to kill the queen(s) in the nest, otherwise they can continue to produce eggs and the nest will recover.
Being able to kill the whole colony takes expertise and specialist ant products – you need to identify the ant, understand its behaviour and apply the correct products.
Before deciding on the appropriate treatment it is important to carry out a thorough inspection to determine the ant species present, the level of infestation and if possible locate the nests.
This information is important and it determines which products we use, where to apply them and how much to apply. It will also allow us to understand whether the problem can be solved in a single visit or if an additional visit / treatment will be required.
Although there will be differences depending on the ant species involved, there are three types of ant treatment:
Depending on the nature of the problem and the products used, it may take between a couple of days and a couple of weeks to get on top of the problem. This is primarily due to the way ants baits work see below).
It’s also important to remember that for outdoor ant problems, it is quite likely that your neighbours are also suffering the same problem. As such, even if we eliminate ants from your yard, its will only be a matter of time before they re-invade from your neighbours’ yards. In such situations it may be necessary to have regular ant treatments to keep the ants at bay.
Ant baits are made up of an attractive food and slow acting insecticide.
Ants feed on the bait and take it back to the nest where it is fed to their nest mates including the queen.
It needs to be slow acting so that it can be spread around the whole colony before it starts to have an effect and the ants realise there is a problem.
As different ant species have different food preferences, it is important we choose the best bait for the ant species present.
The other challenge is to provide enough bait for the size of the colony. This is one reason why a second visit may sometimes be necessary.
Although the ant numbers will start to drop after 24 hours, baits will take between 3 days and 2 weeks to kill an ant colony depending on the species and size of the colony.
Ant problems are difficult to prevent. Outside there are just a lot of ants and stopping them coming inside is virtually impossible as they can squeeze through the smallest of gaps.
However, as ants come inside looking for food and moisture, there are a few things you can do to make the inside of your house less attractive to ants: