Natural Ways to Beat an Ant Invasion
Some people choose chemical substances to deal with ants when they come marching into your home. Since the chemicals may be toxic and dangerous, especially when you have small children in the house, it is better to opt for natural ways of dealing with an ant invasion.
Important Aspects of Keeping Ants Away
You may often wonder why ants are frequent guests in your home. Indeed, the key to eliminating ants is understanding their behavior and what attracts them in. The prime motivation for insects to come in your house is the search for food. The following tips can help you cut off their food supply that will, in the long run, discourage ants from invading.
- Food must be covered and stored away in the proper place in the kitchen
- All forms of spillages must be cleaned as soon as they happen
- Garbage cans in the house must have tightly sealed lids
- Food debris under all kitchen appliances must be cleaned as soon as you finish cooking
- Pet food must be cleared away as soon as the pet is done eating.
- Compost ought to be covered and enclosed
First Things First
There are various natural pest control methods that can help you eliminate any ant problems at home or even at work. Nevertheless, for these methods to work, you must first try to find out where the ants are coming from. While killing insects as soon as you see them may keep your space ant-free for a while, but as long as the nest is intact, more and more of them will keep coming. Follow an ant trail to its source and try to concentrate your ant elimination efforts on that spot.
Taking out An Ant Nest
Different species of ants have different nesting tendencies. While it is unlikely that the nest will be in your home, you shouldn’t rule out that possibility.
- Little black ants are likely to nest in sheltered spots around the yard
- Pavement ants like to nest in cracks in the driveway or sidewalk
- Odorous ants are known for their rotten coconut smell and can be found nesting inside the house within the walls or window frames
- It is rare to find fire ants in the house, but they may nest within your property thus pose a hazard, especially for kids; their nest looks like a giant mound rising above the ground.
An ant nest can easily be destroyed by using boiling water. Prepare a large pot of water and pour the hot boiling water into the entry hole of the nest. The scalding water will kill the ants and collapse the nest. You may have to do this over two or three days until the ants are completely gone. After you’re sure that the nest is destroyed, you should seal off the entrance holes.
Using Natural Insecticides to Kill Ants
With the nest destroyed you can now move on to eradicate the infestation in your house. You can easily achieve this by using simple home remedies you will find below.
- Dish Soap – prepare a mixture of two parts water and one part dish soap. This creates an effective insecticide that will kill the insects when sprayed directly on
- Vinegar – make a 50/50 vinegar – water solution and put it in a spray bottle. This will kill and repel insects because of the strong vinegar smell. You have to spray it directly on the ants to kill them.
- Lemon – prepare lemon juice and mix it with water in a 1:3 ratio. This will give you an excellent ant deterrent.
- Diatomaceous Earth – this is made from fossilized diatoms ground into powder. It scratches out the exoskeleton of any insect that walks on it. Without the exoskeleton, the insect desiccates and dies. It is thus an excellent ant killer. Remember that the diatomaceous earth loses its efficacy if it gets wet.
- Boric Acid – Boric acid is entirely natural substance that kills insects when ingested by It also damages the exoskeleton much like diatomaceous earth.
Trapping the Ants
Another way to get rid of ants is by laying traps in places where the ants like to gather. Traps can be rigged with the natural poison that then kills the ants.
- Boric Acid Traps – this is easy and inexpensive to put together. It is also highly effective. To make it, mix 2 tablespoons of corn syrup and boric acid to make a paste that is spread over cardboard pieces that are then strategically placed in areas of ant infestation. The ants take the sugar and acid with them back to their nest and kill the rest of the ants in the process.
- Baking Soda Traps – mix powdered sugar and baking soda and place it on the spots ants like to visit. Since the ant’s digestive system is acidic, ingesting baking soda will kill them.
Keeping Ants Out Of Your House
Another aspect of handling an ant invasion is by keeping them out of your house. You do not need chemicals for this since you can achieve this by using:
- Natural Ingredients to Make a Line That Ants Won Cross – there are certain natural substances that ants avoid. Such substance can thus be poured in lines to create a perimeter around your house that blocks out the access paths that ants used to get into your home. Excellent deterrents include cayenne pepper, cinnamon, coffee grounds, ground lemon or orange peels, and chalk
- Lemon Juice – the strong citric smell in lemons deters ants. It can, therefore, be squirted along the outer edges of doors and windows to keep out ants.
- Essential Oils – ants are offended by the smell of a variety of essential oils. Spraying these oils along the points that ants use to get into your house will consequently keep them away. Such oils include lavender, lemon, cedar, peppermint and eucalyptus (Please remember Eucalyptus oil is toxic to cats)
- Seal off All the Cracks and Crevices that ants use to get into your house. To do this, you can use caulk or any other sealant at hand.
If you are looking to get rid of ants, you can use any of the techniques listed above. However, if the infestation is so severe that your everyday life is compromised, you should contact a reliable pest control service.