Ants are nature’s cleaning crews. They dispose of decaying trees, dead animals, and other waste around the globe. Their efficiency and resiliency has made them one of the most successful species on the planet, with species having been discovered on nearly every inch of planet Earth. The trouble is, the same efficiency and resiliency that makes them so useful in nature where they are needed makes them a nightmare in human homes where they are not.
You’ve probably had the experience of accidentally forgetting to wipe down a counter, or leaving out an empty can of soda, only to come back and find it teeming with tiny black ants. They might think they’re fulfilling their job as the local eco-system’s vacuums and washrag, but in your house you have your own vacuum and washrag. You don’t need their help.
How Do I Get Rid of and Prevent Ants in my Home/Business?
Fighting the infestation starts with cleaning up the area. You’re also gonna want to follow the ants back to find out where they are entering your home, or if they have a nest. The trail the ants used will need to be wiped down with bleach or vinegar, because ants use chemical trails to communicate with other ants where to find food. It’s possible that an improperly sealed window or doorway may be responsible for letting them in. However, if there is a nest you will need to call an exterminator.
What Are the Effects of Ants In and Around My Home/Business?
Possibly even worse, however, are carpenter ants. Much like termites, carpenter ants dig tunnels in the wood of your home that can be hard to detect from the outside. The difference is, carpenter ants do not actually eat the wood, they just nest in it. The good news is, that means carpenter ant damage takes a lot longer to become an expensive problem then termite damage. The bad news is, carpenter ants are attracted to moisture, so finding carpenter ants in your wood is a fairly decent indicator of water damage.
Are Ants Dangerous?
Ants are not just a nuisance, however. Most forms of ants can and will bite. Fire ants are probably the most notorious, as their bites can be intensely painful and can lead to severe allergic reactions. Fire ants, fortunately, are fairly rare in homes. However, if they feel their nest is threatened, both those little black ants eating spilled food and carpenter ants can bite. Most species of home-invading ants are not aggressive, so avoiding bites is largely a matter of preventing infestations.
Ants are some of the most useful animals in nature, but that doesn’t mean you should tolerate them in your home. Let humans clean your house. Leave the ants cleaning up outside.