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Answering Souderton's Most Commonly Asked Ant Control Questions 

What is your experience with ants? Have you had the displeasure of dealing with an ant problem? How did you address it? Most people use a vacuum and some soapy water to deal with ants. Unfortunately, this only addresses the symptom of the problem. It doesn't get to the source. Ant control in Souderton is more complicated than simply cleaning up ants that get inside your home. But most people don't know where to begin to attack the source of ant problems because they don't understand why ants behave the way they do. For this reason, we get many questions about ants, relating to their behavior. The answers to these questions can give you insights into keeping ants out of your house. Join us as we look at some interesting facts about Souderton ants that will give you an idea of what is required to control them. Before we get started, we want to quickly remind you that you don't have to read an article about ant control to address a frustrating ant problem. Jump to our contact page and reach out to us for ant pest control in Souderton. We can take care of those ants for you. But, if you want to do it yourself, the answers to these commonly asked questions can help. 

carpenter ants on the ground

How Do Ants Feed Themselves?

The ants go marching one by one! Hurrah hurrah! Are you familiar with this song? While made for children, the song is accurate. They march single file into your home and usually go right back outside, where they go down, to the ground, to get out, of the rain, boom boom… If you don't know the song, those last two sentences probably sound like complete gibberish. Let's break it down.

  • Ants march like an army, and soldiers say, "Hurrah!" The army of ants that get into your home have one job. That job is to collect a food source and bring it back to their nest. When you remove food sources, you make it less likely that an army of ants will come marching into your home. Cover food that is sitting on the counter.
  • Clean food debris off the floor. Keep your trash receptacles clean. Check wastepaper baskets for fruit left by your kids. Steps like these make it less likely that ants will invade your home.
  • In most cases, ants come in from a nest in the ground outside. They'll return to that outside nest after raiding your home. If you block the route the ants took to get inside your home, they may not get in again. Inspect your exterior and seal gaps, cracks, and holes with expanding foam or a silicone caulking material. Also, consider door sweeps, weatherstripping, screens, vent covers, and weep hole protectors. 
  • Ants march one by one in a line when they find food in your home. They do this because every worker ant lays down a pheromone scent as it returns to the nest. The scent gets stronger as more ant workers find the food and return to the nest. You can use ant trails to determine where ants are entering your home. Once you've tracked where the ants are getting in, you need to remove the pheromone scent. When combined with sealing exterior entry points, this step is no longer attacking the symptom of your problem. It works to add a layer of protection to keep ants out.
  • Ants go down into the ground to get out of the rain. When we have long periods of rain, the ground gets saturated, which can drive ants indoors. It is critical to seal exterior entry points before heavy rain. 

Along with knowing how ants feed themselves, it is helpful to know what they eat. What do ants eat? Well, it depends on the ants. 

  • Some prefer protein sources such as meats in your garbage, dog or cat food sitting in a bowl outside, food left on your grill, etc. They also eat natural protein sources such as dead insects, rodents, and other wildlife.
  • Some prefer sweet food sources and will eat sweet condiments in your trash, candy left out on the deck, and other sweet snacks. They'll also eat natural food sources that are sweet. A common attractant for these ants is the honeydew produced by aphids and scale insects. They'll also invade a yard that has flowering weeds in the lawn. If you're noticing tiny mounds everywhere, address flowering weeds first. These ants are also attracted to sweet liquid, such as the sugar water in a hummingbird feeder, soda in the bottom of a can, or juice left in a cup.
  • Some ants prefer fungus. These ants don't typically become household pests because they can't find their preferred food source in your home. These ants will live in your backyard and you may notice them crawling around on your back deck.

Any food source in your home can provide a meal for pest ants, even if the food source is past its due date. Some ants even prefer food that is decaying. Sanitation is your primary tool in preventing ant problems. You're on your way to living ant-free when you work to protect your food by storing food in sealed containers.

How Do Ants Build Their Ant Hills?

There is much you can learn from the answer to this question. Ants in Souderton build their hills by excavating soil from their tunnels. When you see a mound, you know there are underground tunnels below, which can help you track ant activity on your property.

Ants that build their nests in the ground may get the bright idea to build a nest inside your home, particularly if they have a nest near your exterior walls and foundation. When these ants create an indoor nest, you might see soil leaking out of gaps and cracks because ant workers may bring soil into your home to create suitable nesting conditions.

Some ants don't create hills, but you can still use this information to help you track ant problems. One kind of ant that doesn't create a hill is the carpenter ant. But it may provide a warning sign like these other ants do. Carpenter ants produce a material called frass, which is ant droppings, insect parts, and sawdust. When carpenter ants have established an indoor nest, you might notice frass leaking out of gaps and cracks in your home.

When you see warning signs, what can you do about them? You need to know how to get rid of an ant infestation. Let's rewind a bit and discuss ant trails and exclusion work again. There are more details you need to know.

What Happens If You Interrupt An Ant Trail?

Ant trails are how ants communicate. When you remove the trail, you stop ants from using that trail to get into your home. But you shouldn't remove the trail until you've used it to track where the ants are entering. Inspect the trail on the inside and outside of your home. When you find the opening, seal it. These two steps on their own can provide effective ant control. But there is more you should know. When you interrupt an ant trail, you might signal to the colony that there is danger in your home. When you do this, you could cause budding to occur. Budding is when a colony splits into two or more colonies, worsening your problem. There are proper steps to take which can help you avoid this.

  • Remove the food source first. The food is why the ants are coming inside.
  • Give the ants time to leave. If necessary, suck them up with a vacuum, and refrain from squishing them.
  • Seal exterior entry points to stop ants from getting in.
  • Wash the area where you found the ants.
  • Use soapy water to clean along the ant trails.
  • Spray vinegar and water to mask any scent left behind and to repel ants.

When you take these steps, you may prevent the unwanted result of budding. In many cases, this is all that is needed. Unfortunately, some conditions can make ant control difficult. When this is the case, professional ant control is the best way to go.

Professional Ant Control For Souderton Homes

Are you in Souderton? If so, contact Moyer Pest Control when dealing with an ant problem. We are a full-service pest control provider. We do the hard work of sealing entry points, which provide long-lasting protection. On top of this, our certified technicians use field-tested methods to locate ant activity, evaluate conducive conditions, apply appropriate control products, and follow up to ensure that no ants remain a problem. 

Along with targeted ant control, we also provide ongoing ant and pest control for Souderton homes. We treat mounds, apply granular products in your yard and landscaping, treat your exterior walls with a liquid application, apply exclusion work, and perform indoor treatments if necessary. You don't keep only ants out when you get ongoing pest control for your Souderton home. We have a long list of common household pests. Get control of them all by reaching out to Moyer Pest Control today. We'll guide you toward the right solution for your specific needs. If you have had it with ants, we have the solution. 

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