My kids have a favorite book, called One Hundred Hungry Ants, that describes the progress of one hundred ants marching toward a picnic. It is a whimsical story and the kids love that the hungry ants are heading to a picnic outdoors. That’s where I prefer hungry ants, too. Outdoors. There are two times in the year when our local ant population tries to bring their party going festivities into my kitchen, though. The first is the Spring, when the rain drives them in; the second is the Fall, when cooler temperatures drive ants indoors in search of food.
Did you know that most species of ants consume large amounts of food in the Autumn to put on fat, which allows them to go without food through much of the winter. When Winter settles in, ants hunker down in clusters and go dormant (sort of like hibernation), to maintain their body heat and protectively huddle around the queen to shelter their population’s lifeline. While they are dormant they use the fat, carbs, and proteins that they stored during their fall foraging.
As long as the hungry ants stay on their hill, or invade the occasional local picnic, I don’t have a problem with them. I’ve taught my children the “Ants Go Marching” song, to respect them in their habitat and not to step on ant hills. The moment they try to bring their marauding band into MY kitchen, it is game over. You see, I have an Anti-Ant Arsenal, and it is STOCK PILED with Terro Liquid Ant Baits.
Take that, arthropods! Go do your Fall foraging elsewhere, because you’re not getting fat in my house! Between my Terro Liquid Ant Baits, and a few other tricks I’ve learned, I am keeping these six legged arthropods on their side of the hill and out of my kitchen! Here’s how I ant proof my kitchen.
- Pay attention to where the ants go. They need food and water to survive. Then strategically place your Terro Liquid Ant Baits near where they head to for food.
- Pay attention to where the ants come from. Try to find their entry point (a window, door, or crack in the wall) and do whatever necessary to seal it off, plug it up, or close it.
- Notice the trail that the ants follow. It is typically the same trail, as once they’ve found a way that works, they reuse it. Scrub their tracks clean. Using distilled white vinegar to clean your sink, stove, and floors will get rid of their tracks and keep your kitchen clean.
- Eliminate the attraction. Ants come indoors for food and water. Vacuum up the crumbs and mop up any spills as quickly as possible. Store food in sealed containers and keep ripe fruit in the refrigerator. Wipe down sticky containers, especially those that contain sweet treats.
- Plant mint. Yes, I said mint. I found that the ants were coming in from the garden and when I planted mint in a container between the garden and the window that the ants loved, it halted the ants in their tracks! Are there any critter that try to invade your home on a seasonal basis? What have you done to prevent their marauding?
- Terro would like to give one lucky reader an ant-stopping arsenal of their own. Enter below, and good luck!