They’re small, industrious and seemingly harmless, but ants can infest your home. By the time you realize it’s too late and their presence can turn into a tormented experience. Are you really sure you know how to kill ants?
In order to understand how to fight ants, you need to learn their behaviour and understand what species you are dealing with. In Italy there are as many as 258 species of ants, very few, if you consider that there are at least 12,643 ants all over the world.
Ants pest control is the ultimate solution to your torments. However, there are also natural remedies against ants, which you can implement to mitigate their presence.
Are you ready to take notes?
We are going to see how to eliminate ants in the house.
How to eliminate ants: what species are you?
Ants are ancient insects that appeared on earth millions of years ago. They are used to live in colonies and perform an important ecological activity for their habitat. Of course, if it’s your home, everything changes.
Ants are part of the order of Hymenoptera, the same family of wasps and bees. Like every insect, they have three pairs of legs and their body has a clear segmentation between head, chest and abdomen.
On the head they have two antennae that perform the function of sensory and communication organs. In addition, they have strong jaws, which they also use to defend themselves against other insects.
Depending on the species, the ants gather in colonies formed by few individuals, up to many millions. They live peacefully, collaboratively, and are organized in a social structure divided into castes:
- The queen is the ant that lays the eggs.
- The males are used for mating.
- The soldiers are ants who defend the nest.
- The workers are ants who carry out the main activities of the colony: they clean and provide food.
Ants prefer to live in a warm climate, better if tropical. So much so, that the only continents where they are missing are Greenland and Iceland.
Species of ants at home
Let’s see what species of ants are considered potentially harmful and that you might encounter in your house:
This ant is brown in colour, with shades from light to dark. It bites, but it doesn’t sting. It’s fond of sugary substances.
Black Ant of the Houses
Intense black in colour, this ant is a vehicle for diseases such as salmonella, because it feeds on waste and also operates in the vicinity of animal excrement. Having it in the house can be risky and can contaminate food.
It can be either red or black. It’s an aggressive ant, which can sting man. It feeds on insects or plant nectar.
Brown coastal ant
It’s a kind of yellowish to brown colour. This species digs the ground around buildings and feeds on fruit and foods containing fat and sugar.
He has a brown head, but the body tends to be darker. If disturbed it tends to be aggressive and can sting, leaving blisters. It is a dangerous ant, a serious pest, because it can destroy entire crops and invade entire residential areas.
Black Garden Ant
This ant is dark brown, tending to black, like the fire ant, but has no sting. It prefers sugary substances, but also feeds on meat.
He’s pale in color with a translucent abdomen and legs. Loves sugary food and settles in wet areas. So watch out for kitchen and bathroom cabinets.
Brown or black. This species also prefers sugary food, but can take advantage of your pets’ food. It produces a coconut-like smell.
The winged male of this species can be confused with termites. It loves all the foods present in the house and, once introduced, remains active also in winter. It moves easily behind the skirting boards and exploiting the electrical wires.
With its classic yellow-brown colour, this ant loves protein and fatty foods, but also feeds on other insects. It nests deeply and often in heated buildings. A trivial insecticide spray can only eliminate part of it, starting the formation of new colonies.
Light brown in colour, this ant feeds on protein and sugar. It is particularly attracted to plastic objects, so it nests near buildings. Beware of electrical and irrigation systems. This ant can sting and is very painful.
This ant has shades of colour that can vary from light to dark. They act close to plants, bushes and rocks. They feed on living and dead insects, but also on sugary substances. Beware of separate collection bins, because they love household waste. They can also spray acid from the abdomen, as self-defence.
It’s a black ant, but its legs are yellowish-white. It nests near plants and tree trunks, but has a preference for garbage cans. It feeds on the nectar of the plants and on sugary substances in general.
Ants disinfestation is important to prevent the transmission of infections. Here are 4 tips to understand how to remove ants and stop their proliferation while waiting for professional intervention.
4 natural remedies against ants
Before they become too intrusive a problem, especially if your house has a garden or you live near a park, it is best to intervene to stop ants.
You’ll have to act as an experienced and patient investigator.
Follow the ants and observe their path. You must find the cracks or holes they are using to access your home. But that’s not all. If they’re established by you, there must be a good reason. So, also follow them to see what food sources they’ve come to.
If you can, it would be very useful, though difficult, to locate the area where the anthill is located. Depending on what kind of ants you’re dealing with, you might find it:
- buried in the garden, often hidden by objects left on the ground for a long time;
- inside the trunks of sturdy plants, such as olive trees, or in the roots of bushes and other plants;
- in pots and saucers of balconies and gardens;
- in the walls of the house.
Collected the evidence, mapped the paths and found the anthill, here is how to act without resorting to pesticides.
How to remove ants: essential oil of cloves and vinegar
A widely used natural remedy is to wash floors with a solution of clove essential oil, or lemon, water and vinegar. Ants hate the smell of this solution and will stay away from it. However, as soon as the smell is gone, they will come back to life.
How to eliminate ants with natural methods: salt
Salt is another ingredient that can keep ants away. Spread a little along the skirting boards and fixtures. You can enhance the effect by moistening it with a few drops of vinegar or clove extract.
How to remove ants from the kitchen: laurel and oregano
Laurel and dried oregano, on the other hand, are ideal for protecting the kitchen shelves where you store food. A natural remedy whose scent is hated by ants.
On the other hand, if you’re targeting underwear drawers or cupboards, you can use mint leaves as a repellent against ants. They leave a pleasant scent to man, but they annoy ants.
How to remove ants from plants: Coffee grounds
If you notice ants on the balcony, to prevent them from entering the house, use coffee grounds. Put them in the saucers or between the plants. Unfortunately, some species get used to it and after a short time this remedy will no longer have any effect. But it’s worth a try.
You can use a few drops of the solution to wash the floors, and try a combined action with coffee grounds.
These remedies against ants will help you, but they require constant effort. There are also insecticides on the market that you can use to get rid of ants, but they don’t solve the problem permanently.
The only solution that can guarantee you a definitive ant disinfestation is the intervention of experts in the field such as ImmediatelyDisinfestazioni Cattolica.
Our methods are infallible, both indoors and outdoors. We do not limit ourselves to using specific products that are compatible with the environment, but we proceed with meticulousness. We observe the type of ant that is infesting your home, and knowing the behaviour and methods of reproduction, we can intervene with specific techniques and products.
Take your hands out of your hair. For ant pest control contact ImmediatelyDisinfestazioni Cattolica.
We will solve the problem and advise you on prevention techniques to prevent it from happening again.