According to entomologists, there are roughly twelve thousand ant species in the world. You’ve got the pharaoh ant, the Argentine ant, the grease or thief ant, the house ant, the pavement ant, and even the pesky carpenter ant, which won’t have any qualms with eating up all the wood in your house. If you’re currently waging a seemingly endless war with these ubiquitous and occasionally nasty creatures, here’s how to get rid of ants naturally.
Check If Ants Are In the Kitchen
To find out if your home is already being invaded by ants, the kitchen should be the first place to look out for their presence. The ants that are lingering in your kitchen could be the “scout ants”, who are checking for signs for “suitability”. Once these ants find out you’re kitchen’s a cool place to hang out, they’ll go back to the nest and inform the rest of the family, and head to your kitchen. To prevent this from happening, clean your kitchen quickly, by sealing all the food, and removing all sticky, greasy, sweet and fresh foods from the kitchen counters and cupboards.
Wash All Dishes after Use
Never leave the dirty dishes, forks and spoons on the kitchen counter or wash area, because ants can easily smell the leftovers on the plates and utensils. Wash all the dishes and then place them into the dishwasher, and shut the door tight. Wipe the cupboard and benchtop surfaces with vinegar, to clean, disinfect and remove all types of smells. Also make sure to remove all trash from the garbage bins, and rinse all recyclable containers before bringing them back into the storage areas.
Sweep or Vacuum the Kitchen Floor, and Seal All Food Containers
Once you’re done wiping and rinsing the countertops and cupboards, it’s now time to sweep/vacuum the kitchen floors of any food item that the ants may find enticing. Also rinse off all jars, containers or bottles that have leftover, or sticky residue (like jam/jelly jars, sauce and pickle bottles, honey and syrup containers). Try placing these containers and bottles inside a bowl of water. If you properly seal every food container in the kitchen, this will leave the ants hungry, and with nothing to eat here, they’ll go someplace else.
Close All Possible Entry Areas
To prevent more ants from entering the kitchen, and other areas of the house, scout the ant’s possible entry and exit points. To do this, follow the ants first to see where they’re coming from. Once you find out where they’re coming from, seal the entrance holes with putty, glue, plaster or silicone caulk. You could also use poster tack and petroleum jelly, powdered charcoal, chalk lines, Vaseline, powdered cleaner, baby powder or silica aerogel for sealing these entry points, until you can come up with a permanent solution for closing the gap.
If All Else Fails, Call A Professional Exterminator
If you’ve already done everything, and the ants still keep coming back, it’s now time to call a professional pest exterminator who specializes in using only organic or natural pesticides for dealing with all types of ants.
And while ants can at times be very pesky, they’re not as bad as you think they are. Many ant varieties are actually good for us, and the environment. The helpful ants eat the larvae of bed bugs, fleas, flies, silverfish, cockroaches and clothe moths. So before you get rid of all of them from your home, why don’t you just try preventing them from accessing your food, the natural way?
This is a guest post for Jersey Pest Control.