in your home
In Your Home
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Baits containing borates
Amdro Kills Ants Ant Killer (liquid ant bait), KM Ant Pro ant bait delivery system, Maggie’s Farm Simply Effective No Spill Ant Kill, Terro Ant Killer II Liquid Ant Bait Station (pre-filled bait stations)
Containerized baits containing hydramethylnon
Amdro Kills Ants Ant Killing Bait (bait stations), Combat Source Kill 4 Ant Bait Stations (use only in enclosed bait stations)
Desiccating dust containing diatomaceous earth (DE)
Concern Diatomaceous Earth Crawling Insect Killer, Safer Brand Ant and Crawling Insect Killer—Diatomaceous Earth, St. Gabriel Organics Diatomaceous Earth Insect Dust
Applicator for diatomaceous earth (DE)
EcoLogic Ant and Roach Killer, Ecosmart Ant and Roach Killer, Orange Guard
Stikem Special pest glue, Tree Tanglefoot Insect Barrier
While they can be pests, ants are helpful creatures, especially outside. Ants kill and eat many pest insects, help to aerate soil, and recycle animal and vegetable material. This is good news, because it’s probably not possible to eliminate ants from their outdoor habitat. The best way to manage an ant invasion is to keep them outside.
Argentine ants are frequent invaders in California homes. They are tiny (1/8 inch). They come inside a few at a time at first (the scouts), and then in long lines, following scent trails to a food source.
If you deal with ants when they first come inside, a few simple steps can take care of the problem.
Baits use a minimum of insecticide and confine it to a very small area. Ants carry small quantities of bait back to the nest to share, which can reduce the local ant population.
When ants are gone, remove the bait so you don’t attract more ants. Return enclosed bait stations to the original box to save and use again. Put the box inside a plastic bag, seal it with a twist-tie, and store away from children and pets.
If ants are nesting in a potted houseplant, move it outdoors. Water it thoroughly and place the pot in a bucket filled with water that comes an inch below the rim of the pot. Use a stick to make a bridge for ants to get out of the pot and the bucket without getting in the water. The ants will soon begin carrying their white-colored young to safety. When no more ants emerge, drain the pot and return it to the house.