With more than 700 species of ants living in the United States, it’s no surprise that they have become a common home invader. Many homeowners have experienced an invasion, especially in the warmer months as various pests begin to forage for food. But, where do ants hide once they have entered a building? Read below to find out.
In a recent survey conducted by the National Pest Management Association, pest control professionals were asked about the ant activity they had witnessed. Participants identified that ant infestations were common in the following structures:
- Office buildings (88%)
- Restaurants (83%)
- Apartments and condominiums (82%)
- Single-family homes (80%)
- Nursing homes (70%)
- Hospitals (58%)
- Schools (58%)
- College dormitories (34%)
Within these buildings, the following areas are particularly susceptible to infestations:
- Kitchens (96%)
- Bathrooms (89%)
- Inside walls (73%)
- Bedrooms (61%)
- Living rooms (60%)
- Basements (54%)
- Air conditioning and heating units (37%)
Outside, ants are commonly found on driveways, walkways and in landscaped beds (91%).
To prevent an ant infestation, there are several preventative measures you can take. While the implementation can vary from room to room, the main goal is to limit ant access to food and water. Read below to find out how to prevent ants in the most common areas.
It should be no surprise that ants love kitchens. Not only do they have access to large amounts of food, but the sink provides a valuable water source. Follow these tips to make your kitchen less susceptible to ant infestations:
- Always clean any spills and crumbs that may occur. Leaving messes for later provides an open invitation for ants to walk in and feast.
- Store sweeteners such as sugar, honey and syrup in containers that seal. Wipe any residue from the outside.
- Place a bay leaf in containers of dry goods, such as flour. The smell will repel ants and other pest that infest stored products.
- Before recycling or throwing out a container, such as a juice bottle, give it a thorough rinse.
- Take your trash out regularly.
- Watch any fruit that you have sitting around. Overripe fruit attracts ants.
- Check your faucet for any leaks or water build up.
- If you have pets, do not leave leftover food out. Also, wash their bowls regularly.
Ants need water to survive, making bathrooms a prime place for an invasion. Follow these tips to prevent unwelcome ants from invading your bathroom:
- Inspect sinks, toilets, tubs and faucets for any leaks or drips.
- Thoroughly clean and disinfect floors and wipe down the inside of drawers with warm soapy water.
- Make sure that lotion, soap and shampoo bottles are secure and check for spills.
To keep ants from entering a home, it is important to pest-proof any entrances to your house. To do this:
- Eliminate any standing water around or near your home.
- Cut tree branches away from your house, as they can provide a walkway for pests.
- Seal any cracks or crevices in the foundation, windows or other possible entry points.
- Dispose of any garbage in cans regularly.
- Store firewood or building material away from your home.
If You Spot Ants
Even if you follow the tips above, ants may still invade your home. If this happens, contact us at Dodson Bros. and we can help you get rid of them. The process begins with a free inspection where we will assess the situation and create a custom plan to eliminate your invasion.