The topic of getting rid of ants is a tough one to talk about. The reason is that there is a large variety in the species of ants, each of them are unique in their own way. How to exterminate them varies with the species you are up against. It’s not a question of “how” but “what kind” – that is, what kind of ant do you have?
Due to the large number of species, it is extremely difficult to figure out what exactly you’re dealing with. Depending on where you live, you may be able to narrow it down because specific species are more prevalent in different areas. For example, fire ants run rampant in the south. The best approach is to break down ant control methods by the type of ants you may encounter. It will be up to you to decide what type of ant you may have. The most common species will be covered here and a brief discussion of the signs so you can figure out what type it is.
This is probably the most common type of household ant faced by people today. This is the little dark colored ant that builds small sand hills in the side of house near the foundation or in driveways. How to get rid of ant hills in the garden is one of the most commonly cited problems people run into with ants. The bait used should be sweet, like boric acid which is a natural substance. Because of the fact that these ants are so common, there are various treatment methods you can find at your local home and garden store. Just make sure it says it treats pavement ants.
Sometimes you may find yourself up against winged ants. These are usually male pavement ants that are preparing to mate. You may see this crawling out of cracks in the walls of your home. To handle this, you will be required to drill holes and apply an aerosol insecticide. This may be better left to the professionals. If these ants are left unchecked, it could result in serious damage to the frame of your home.
The pharaoh ant is another common house ant you may encounter. This ant is a very small yellow brown colored ant. It is a difficult ant get rid of because it is a very resilient species. Like the pavement ant, you should use a sweet bait such as borax. The same bait used to eliminate pavement ants can be used on pharaoh ants, but be sure to read the label.
You may find yourself facing a colony of red ants, or fire ants. These ants are particularly nasty because they are an aggressive species and will swarm anyone that threatens their nest. A two-phased approach must be taken. The first involves “broadcasting” a bait insecticide in and around the affected areas. This will eliminate a significant portion of the ants, but not all of them. It needs to be followed up by phase two: drenching. This involves applying an organic liquid insecticide, by drenching the nests. Do not be stingy with the insecticides.
These are the most common type of ants you will run into during your quest to make your home and yard ant free. There are thousands of species you might encounter, but the techniques will be similar. The most important part of getting rid of ants, is determining what species of ant you’re dealing with. Give the treatment technique a chance to work. If it fails, try a different remedy – you may have misidentified the ant.