Ants are some of the most common household pests around the world. Once they get into your house, it is often difficult to get rid of them. You might be surprised to find out that you are actually attracting ants to your home because of some of your habits. So, what are ants attracted to? And how can you keep them out for good?
Like all living creatures, ants need food, water, and shelter for survival. Our homes can easily provide ants with all three of these things if we are not careful. Let’s look closer at these specific areas.
Ants require a mixture of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats in their diet. They are particularly attracted to sugars because they contain a large amount of usable carbs. Sugary foods that are left out in the open will become a homing beacon for ants. Even worse is sugary liquids. Ants prefer liquid solutions because they can more easily swallow them. This means that things like spilled juice, rotting fruit, melted popsicles, etc. should immediately be cleaned up. Fats and greasy things also have a strong scent that will attract ants. Avoid problems by washing dishes immediately and wiping down cooking surfaces often. Lastly, according to an article in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, ants will also seek out sources of salt. Salt is important in maintaining bodily functions. In fact, researchers found that in salt-poor environments, ants were more attracted to salty snacks that sweet ones. Any crumbs, leftovers, or improperly stored food can also be the start of an ant infestation.
All living things need water to survive. Ants are small creatures and do not need large amounts of water, but many ant species are attracted to damp conditions that will supply their needs. Carpenter ants will seek out damp wood caused by leaks, improper drainage, etc. A carpenter ant infestation can cause large amounts of damage to the structure of the home if allowed to grow unchecked.
Ants are usually content to live outdoors, but extreme weather conditions can contribute to them coming indoors. Particularly hot dry weather or wet, rainy conditions are often the cause of this migration indoors. Properly sealing the exterior of the home to make it difficult to get inside is an important part of ant prevention.
Now that you know the main things that attract ants, you can use that knowledge to try to prevent them. Here are some important things you can do to keep ants out of your home.
- Immediately clean up spills
- Wipe counters regularly
- Wash dishes after use
- Sweep and vacuum to prevent crumbs
- Store food properly by placing it in the refrigerator or in sealed, airtight containers
- Clean kitchens and bathrooms often
- Take out the rubbish daily
- Keep dumpsters or outdoor rubbish bins away from entryways
- Fix leaky faucets or pipes
- Ensure proper drainage on the outside of the home
- Use a dehumidifier if your home is too humid
- Use latex caulk to seal small cracks and crevices on the exterior of the home
- Make sure that doors and windows close tightly
- Ensure that weatherstripping around doors is present and in good condition
If you need help getting rid of ants, Radar Pest Control can help. One of our technicians will come out and inspect the property, identify the species of ant present, and work with you to come up with a customized plan to solve the problem. For pest control in Nambour or pest control in Buderim, you can trust Radar Pest Control to get the job done right.