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Ant Control

Ants are a nuisance when they get into the house, creating a trail of insects as they feed on any bits of food they can find. Ants live in colonies or nests often found in the ground near the foundations of buildings, in crawlspaces, or under concrete slabs. It is the worker ants who forge for food to feed the entire colony. They can be identified by their body shapes, which have three body parts and a constricted waist. Controlling these insects requires locating the ant nest and destroying the colony.

If you are having a problem with ants, consider the following:

  • A small piece of food can serve as bait, allowing you to trace the ant route back to the crack or crevice they are using to enter the house. It is important to apply any insecticide to this opening; never treat an entire wall, floor or household surface.
  • Light applications of dust made from products with benediocarb, chlorpyrifos, or boric acids pushed into the crack the ants are using will kill them, as the workers will carry the insecticide back to the nest. Oil based insecticides applied to the crack with a paintbrush are also a good choice, as are some ant bait syrups. Aerosol sprays are not as effective.
  • Toxic, fast acting insecticides do not do as good a job of eliminating ants as slow acting types that the workers carry back to the nest for consumption. These should be placed directly on the ant trails.
  • Ants can be prevented from entering the building by using a perimeter spray that is applied two feet up the foundation wall and three feet out into the soil. These sprays are made by mixing a powdered insecticide with water, so that foundation plants are not damaged. Directions for mixing these sprays should be read very carefully.

Always keep ant insecticides away from children and pets.

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