An age-old question that so many homeowners not only in Dublin but also across the globe ask themselves, ‘how to get rid of ants?’
These tiny insects can be a real nuisance and as soon as the warmer days kick in, all sizes and shapes of ants can invade your house with a mere snap of a finger. From the moment ants get inside your home, you might end up scratching your head in frustration because no matter what you do you can’t seem to get rid of them.
Just so you know, ants are very social insects. The moment a single ant gains access into your house, a large crowd will follow to have their own kind of ‘ant party’. Therefore you need the help of experts in pest control to prevent an ant problem from getting out of control.
Why Do You Have Ants in Your Dublin Home, Anyway?
Before learning how to get rid of ants, you should first understand why ants love being in and around your home in the first place.
Ants are looking for food and it so happens that there is lots of it in your house.
Ants moving sand from under floor
If you find little clusters of sandy dirt along the walls, it is likely that a queen ant has built a colony close to your home which is a possible source of water and food for ants and their babies. Ant nests are often located underground & therefore more than one treatment can be necessary to achieve the eradication of the ant nest.
Once they are inside your home, ants also take advantage of the protection that your house offers from both the elements and predators. Just like other creatures, ants also need to find food, stay warm, and reproduce.
Your home is a perfect source of harbourage & food for ants. Ant infestations do not really have anything to do with housekeeping. What we do know is that if they have access to your home & find a food source, your home provides an ideal place for the ants to spread.
During late spring to early summer, large swarms of different ants, including black ants, sugar ants, winged ants, and others will go on a quest to look for new places where they can build their new colonies. There are also houses with tiny openings in the siding or piles of wood where some types of ants prefer to live such as carpenter ants.
Now, the million-dollar question is, how do you even control and get rid of ants?
Stop Ants from Gathering Together Right from the Beginning
Prevention remains to be the only best and cheapest way for avoiding ant infestations in your Dublin home.
Implementing the right techniques for sanitation alone can work like magic in keeping these annoying insects away from your house. Many ants inside your house are just searching for food. This means that if you make it more difficult for them to find any food source in your house, the chance for them to linger there and continue their search is reduced.
Below are some helpful ideas for preventing ants from getting access to your home or getting rid of any stray ants before they become an infestation:
Address moist areas.
Check for moist spots in and around your home such as puddles, water accumulation close to your foundation, and the like.
Clean the gutters.
Downspouts and gutters can accumulate leaves that can provide a moist and nice nest where ants can thrive.
Clear any shrubbery or vegetation.
Ensure that shrubs and trees do not touch your house. Remove any brush and keep potted plants at a safe distance away from your home’s foundation since these are places where ants like to build their nests.
Remove piles of wood.
Remove stumps or logs from around your home. These insects just love rotten wood and this is why it is recommended to get rid of these or cover them with tarps to prevent issues from arising.
Seal all entryways.
Ants love crawling through cracks in doors, windows, and walls. Don’t forget to check for any openings in the siding of your home.
Seal your food containers.
Make sure that you properly store your food in airtight containers to reduce the chances of ants or other pests getting attracted to them.
Seal the trash bins.
Seal your trash and frequently discard any open garbage.
Regular vacuuming can do wonders. Pay close attention under carpets and furniture and to baseboards.
Wipe down every surface around your house.
Did you notice how ants seem to walk in seemingly defined lines both inside and outside your home? It is because the usual odorous ants you find inside your house leave behind a scent trail to help the rest of the ants to follow the same track to sources of food. You can use a strong disinfectant wipe to erase the ant trail to make it more difficult/impossible for future ants to find their way into your house.
Identify the Specific Types of Ants in Your Home
Every type of ant has a different nesting habit. Identifying the specific type of ant in your house can give you a good idea of the nesting place of ants and the things you can do to keep them outside your home.
It is extremely important to identify the type of ant in your home as different treatments may be required.
There are thousands of species of ants all over the world but the following are some that are more likely found in Dublin:
Worker garden ants are 4 to 5mm long while queens can reach a length of up to 15mm. Garden ants have a colour of dark brown-black. There is one tiny segment at the waist or the pedicel of garden ants. These ants don’t have a sting.
Ghost ants have an approximate length of 1.6mm with translucent or pale abdomen and legs.
Pavement ants are blackish or dark brown in colour with an approximate length of 3mm. These ants have two nodes on the petiole, two spines on the back, and six legs. This species also has grooves on the thorax and head, with the thorax uneven with a single pair of spines. Pavement ants also have 12-segmented antennae that have a 3-segmented club. The winged ants are usually mistaken for termites.
Worker pharaoh’s ants have a length of 1.5 to 2mm that is yellow-brown in colour with a brown abdomen. Queens are 3.5 to 6mm long and are winged with dark red colour. Males have a length of 3mm and are black in colour with wings. They have two tiny segments at the pedicel and black eyes. Pharaoh Ants are very different to other ants & should not be treated with the same insecticides as it only serves to split their colonies & increase their numbers.
These ants have a reddish-brown colour with a single big segment at the pedicel. The workers are also 2mm long with the abdomen’s first two segments constricted. There is also a sting present in these ants.
Eradicate the Ants After Identifying Them
You can kill ants either naturally or aggressively. Combining several remedies is still considered the best and most feasible way for getting rid of ants and keeping them away. Below are some of the best methods to keep the ants under control:
Use diatomaceous earth.
Spread the diatomaceous earth around cabinets, room corners, and other nooks & crannies, where ants tend to enter or crawl into your house. The granules can dry out the ants and form a repellent barrier. You can also use diatomaceous earth for controlling other insects in and around your home.
These work through using a sweetened poison to lure ants. The ants can eat the gel and upon returning to their colony, they will soon die and the rest of the ants will feed on the dead ant that will spread the poison further.
Use liquid dish soap.
Mix two tablespoons of soap in one pint of water and spritz it on the ants. This can kill off the ants that you can see around your house although you will also need to take other measures to ensure that other ants won’t be able to get inside your house.
Use non-repellent sprays and insecticides.
These products can work both inside and outside your home if the ant nests are exposed. These can also kill ants right on contact.
Take advantage of outdoor ant repellents.
These are made strong to endure the different outdoor elements and have the tendency of working as a long-lasting toxin.
Put vinegar to block the path of ants.
Vinegar can kill the ants right on the spot and help keep them away for some time by masking the trail of these insects to prevent the other ants from finding their way into your home.
While ants may seem harmless because of their tiny size, a serious infestation can easily wreak havoc on your property. This is why you need to make sure that you address the problem right away before it gets too late. With the help of Owl Pest Control Dublin, you can finally say goodbye to your annoying ant problems once and for all!