One or two ants in the kitchen can be alright with any homeowner. In fact, it may be harmless just looking at them and knowing that they are also nature’s creatures. But when you see so many of them on your walls, on your door’s hinges, or even in your drinking water, you stop and wonder where they come from. You also try to recall if there are fruit trees near you or just that the ants are super talented and smart to be able to get into your home. But the ants don’t need to be a threat, and they certainly don’t need to be a problem.
There really is no need to panic when ants come to your home. After all, they go about their business with one thing in mind, and that is food. Ants are usually red or black and most are wingless. “Winged” ants are present only during colony reproduction time.
Even if they are small in size, ants are natural predators of many other animals and insects pests like larvae, fleas, termites, caterpillars and more. In other words, they help keep nature’s balance. But sometimes, they can be alarming especially if there are young children in your home. Some species of ants become problems in the gardens when they begin to build large mounds that are unsightly especially if it is right smack in the middle of your roses and hydrangeas. Ants can also damage ornamental plants and succulents by tunnelling around the roots and this will cause them to dry out.
You can look closely if what you see is a termite or an ant. Ants have bent antennae and narrow waists, termites have straight antennae and thick waists. Ants are social insects and depend on colonies. The queen lays the eggs and care for them until they hatch which takes about 30 days. When the eggs hatch, the young look like legless larvae and pupate 1-2 months later, they then transform and become worker ants. Eggs are continuously laid in the spring, summer and fall. Colonies prefer woody areas, soil or garden trash.
Get Rid Of Ants Naturally
Because ants require food and water to survive, you have to eliminate these basic necessities and reduce their numbers. You can begin by taking these steps in your own home.
- Store food and organic waste in sealed containers
- Clean up your kitchen surfaces
- Empty your trash daily
- Use organic insecticide on doors and window jams to prevent entry
- Check your pipes and electrical wires around the house
- Avoid conventional poisons and use only organic alternatives like boric acid and botanical insecticide
- Locate the mound and destroy the colony to prevent them from coming in
- Botanical insecticide applied directly to the soil will destroy existing mounds
There are also benefits for having ants around as long as their numbers are not overwhelming. You can always tolerate them when a few are present. You can learn more about which natural products can help reduce the antsy presence in your home.