At first glance, ants may not seem like a lot of trouble, but controlling these pests can be challenging, especially for the types that are common to the Washington area. Washington homeowners frequently encounter five main types of ants on their properties.
- Odorous House Ants: These are the most common (and hard to control) ants you’ll find in your home as they’re drawn to moisture and sugar.
- Carpenter Ants: As the name suggests, carpenter ants like to make their homes in damaged, rotten wood, and they can cause significant structural damage to your home.
- Red Pavement Ants: These are the ants you frequently see outside on sidewalks. Red pavement ants tend to form destructive colonies under pavement and concrete areas, and while their bite isn’t dangerous, they can sting.
- Cow Killer Ants: Cow killer ants, also known as red velvet ants, are technically a type of wasp that’s attracted to moisture in your home. Cow killers can be a nuisance, and they won’t hesitate to bite or sting.
- Formica Ants: Formica ants’ main line of defense is spraying formic acid. These critters prefer to hide under stones or in the grass.
- Western Harvester Ants: Western harvester ants pack both a painful bite and sting.
Whether you’re dealing with common house ants, carpenter ants, or even western harvester ants, an ant problem won’t go away on its own – here’s what you need to know about getting rid of ant infestations and how to prevent these pests from coming back.
Why Are Ants So Hard To Get Rid Of?
Ants are one of the most common pest invaders for the Pacific Northwest during the summertime, and once they’ve made it inside your home, it’s hard to get them out. While some ants may get inside accidentally, many native ants venture inside because they’re looking for food and moisture.
House ants are the most common invader, and their colonies can easily grow into the thousands – which is why eliminating the infestation is so hard. When they find a source of food, they’ll form a line of ants from their entry point or colony to the nutrients. House ants may keep their colony outside in the grass or under pavement, and use tiny cracks or gaps to gain entrance into your home.
Carpenter ants, however, can be even trickier to find – they’ll build large nests in damaged or moist wood, which may not always be visible to homeowners.
While many homeowners may rely on OTC ant sprays to get rid of an infestation, these tactics are rarely effective – not only are many of these sprays potentially toxic for you and your pets, but they rarely get rid of the entire colony.
The Best Form Of Ant Control
Addressing an ant infestation requires the help of a professional like those of us at Alta Pest Control. Our ant control program includes low-impact treatment options that are easy on the environment, but harsh on your ant infestation.
If you’ve got an ant problem on your hands, call us to learn more about our ant control program or to schedule your free inspection.
How To Prevent Future Ant Infestations
While they may not help with active infestations, there are a few tips for keeping your home ant-free in the future:
- Seal any gaps, cracks, or tears in entrances that may be providing ants with access.
- Use weatherstripping around doors and windows to seal up tiny openings.
- Don’t allow leaky pipes and fixtures to go unrepaired.
- Keep sources of food, including pet food, sealed in airtight containers.
- Keep trash cans tightly sealed.
- Get rid of rotting or water-damaged wood that may be in or around your home.
However, if the above tips aren’t enough to deter some of Washington’s most challenging invaders, don’t hesitate to contact us at Alta Pest Control today!