First of all, let me be clear. There is no such animal as a “sugar ant”. This is a term that is loosely applied to any number of small species of ants that seemingly find the smallest bit of sugar from a spill the night before and invade your kitchen, living room, bathroom, let’s face it, anywhere.
We could spend a lot of time talking about species identification (which, by the way, is VERY IMPORTANT), and walk through a plethora of control strategies, which can be tricky to implement, and expensive to get the right product and equipment. Instead I am going to give you six easy home remedies to get rid of sugar ants that will temporarily resolve your issue.
- Not all little ants are attracted to sugar. Ants will often switch between sugars and proteins, depending on the needs of the colony. Keeping all foods in containers and properly stored will minimize your risk.
- Avoid strong cleaning products when wiping up after you see ants. Products with ammonia, alcohol and strong scents will alert the ants in the area that a threat is present. These ants can then spread to other areas, multiplying your problem.
- Use a blue window cleaner to clean up after ants. I don’t know what the process is, or why this works, but a blue window cleaner, regardless of brand, will erase the scent trails that ants are following. It will not however trigger the response described above.
- Keep pet foods properly stored and unavailable to either pets or ants unless you are actually feeding your animal. Ants love pet food and will actively seek it out.
- Avoid using sprays or powders to control an ant problem. They can make it worse, just like the cleaners above.
- Ants baits purchased from DIY stores can work well, but give them time, lots of it. It can take 7-10 days for ants to ingest enough bait to suppress a colony. Place traps directly in the trail of ants and leave undisturbed. Remember that ants can change their preference in foods and most baits are either a sugar or a protein. A bait that works one day, might be left completely alone the next.
These basic steps should give you temporary relief from ants inside your home, in your backyard or just about anywhere you can find them. Read all labels on products you use. These steps only provide you with short term control, call University Termite & Pest Control, we can resolve ant problems as easy as 1-2-3.