Ghost ants have become a common household pest, invading homes from outside and building a nest inside. To permanently eliminate ghost ants, you must choose a treatment that eliminates the entire colony, along with the queen. Don’t waste your energy squishing the ants on your counters because more will arrive as long as the colony is actively nesting nearby.
So how can you make boric acid ant baits for ghost ants? Bait for killing ants combines a desirable food with a pesticide. The pesticide works by exterminating the entire colony once the thousands of workers return to the nest with the food. Boric acid is a low-toxicity pesticide available in pharmacies and hardware stores that works well against ants.
Boric Acid Baits for Ghost Ants
Ants exist in big colonies with one or even several queen ants, which are largely made up of thousands of workers. The queens rarely leave their dwelling, relying on the ghost ant workers to feed them. Boric acid is an effective substance in ant bait since it is a slow-acting toxin.
When boric acid is mixed with a sweet treat, the workers collect it and bring it back to the colony to distribute, killing a large number of ants at once. Boric acid is commonly found at pharmacies as a component in a variety of medications, including eye drops. You can also find it in the grocery store’s laundry section.
Why Use Boric Acid?
Boric acid is most commonly used by ants as a digestive poison. The sweet bait food containing boric acid will be carried back to the colony by the worker ants. The colony’s ants will consume it and perish as a result. Although scientists aren’t sure how boric acid appears to interfere with the ants’ metabolism. The exoskeleton of an insect is affected by sodium borate salts, causing it to dry out.
Making your own effective ant killer with boric acid isn’t a quick treatment for an ant infestation. It’s a slow-acting toxin that only a few ants in the colony share. The poison may take some time to reach the queens, but once it does, the colony is effectively dead. It should only take a few days to notice a decrease in the number of ants surrounding the bait, but it could take 3 to 4 weeks to entirely eliminate the colony that is causing your difficulties.
How to Make A Homemade With Boric Acid Bait for Ghost Ants
Some ants have a sweet tooth, while others prefer fats and grease. Before settling on a recipe, combine your boric acid with a few different foods to see which one attracts the most ants. Sugar can be dissolved in water, jelly or honey can be used, or peanut butter or ordinary butter can be used.
A 2 percent solution is made by combining a teaspoon of boric acid with a cup of food. For a sweet bait, add around 8 teaspoons of sugar water to a cup of water, then 1 teaspoon boric acid. Lower the boric acid to 1/2 teaspoon per cup for a 1 percent solution if the ants aren’t as attracted to your baits as you’d like. Leftover bait can be stored at room temperature for up to two weeks in a tightly sealed container or covered in plastic wrap.
Depending on what types of ants you have and their food preferences, you can use one of the following methods for a homemade ant killer:
- Grease ant bait: Combine 2 tablespoons of peanut butter and 2 tablespoons of honey with about 1/2 teaspoons of boric acid powder. Protein-hungry ants choose a bait that has both protein and sugar.
- Sugar ant bait: Combine 2 tablespoons mint jelly with 1/4 teaspoon boric acid powder for a sweet bait. According to research, the best sugar ant lure is mint jelly. If you don’t have any on hand, you can try another jelly flavor for the sugar ant bait.
Bait placement is crucial, so remember to position your ant bait in a spot where you see the most ants. You want the bait station to be close to where they normally travel. Place the ant-killing mixture on a piece of waxed paper or cardboard that has been secured using masking tape. Within a few hours, ants will swarm around the bait if you choose a decent place and prepare the proper kind of bait. If not, try shifting the bait to a new spot.
What Are the Signs of an Ant Infestation?
Ants are one of nature’s most hardworking insects, which makes them a nightmare to have in the house. If a colony lives close to your household, they can sneak inside and multiply by nibbling on crumbs. Although ghost ants are bothersome pests that do not cause physical injury to people or damage to our structures, they should never be welcomed in our homes.
Signs of Ant Infestations
Ants are the most well-known pests: they may enter your home for a variety of reasons, including shelter, an abundance of food, and moisture, among others. But once they have infiltrated your home, they’re difficult to eliminate. There are certain unmistakable indicators that your home is being infested by ants, but they can be difficult to spot unless you know what to look for.
- Live Ants – A significant number of live ants can be a strong indicator of an ant infestation. Ants are frequently found in kitchens and other food preparation facilities.
- Ant Trails – To lure other ants from their colony to a food source, some ants leave a pheromone trail. Another indicator of an ant infestation are trails leading into and out of your residence or property.
- Ant Mound or Nest – Ants might use a small pile of soil or dirt as a nest site. Some ant species prefer to live in walls or other dark, quiet places, making them difficult to detect.
Identify the Ants Causing the Infestation
A treatment program can be implemented once you are sure you are dealing with ghost ants and not some other species. Misidentification can lead to the use of ineffective treatment solutions, wasting time and money. Thankfully, ghost ants are easy to spot when compared to different kinds of ants such as big-headed ants, pavement ants, or harvester ants. Here, you’ll find a list of the most distinguishing characteristics.
The ghost ant is a tropical and subtropical invasive species of ant that has been dispersed by humans and is mostly found in parts of the United States. In fact, their native distribution is uncertain due to their widespread dispersal. Ghost ants belong to the same species like wasps and bees and are classified as Hymenoptera.
Ghost ants can be found in your house or yard near food supplies, firewood, logs, and cracks. These ants are small and have a striking similarity to odorous house ants. If ghost ants aren’t dealt with appropriately with the help of pest control companies or homemade baits, they can become a serious problem. Some features that help identify them are as follows:
- Appearance – The dark brown to black bodies and translucent abdomens of ghost ants range in size from 1 to 2 mm in length.
- Behavior – Ghost ant nests are huge, with numerous queens, and they frequently spread to mega colonies or a network of nests.
- Feeding Habits – The ghost ant’s diet consists of sweet things as well as protein, such as dead insects or live insects that are easily overpowered. Dead insects have been spotted being tended by ghost ants for honeydew.
- Habitat and Nesting Habits – Because of their small size, ghost ants can nest in a wide range of places. They’re most commonly found in warm, damp areas such as loose soil, rotting wood, or even foundation cracks. They also prefer to build their nests near or near heat sources like hot water pipes and heaters.
- Threats Posed by Infestation – The primary problem posed by ghost ants is their tendency for foraging in human habitation. They can pose a hazard to natural wildlife. They’ve also been an issue in confined greenhouses.
- Lifespan – The actual length of life is unknown. They do, however, have a limited lifespan of only a few weeks.
Alternative Ghost Ant Infestation Solutions
Because of unsanitary circumstances or an ideal nesting environment, ghost ants are enticed to set up their colony’s nest in your home. This is why you or a pest control company should act quickly to eliminate the ghost ant infestation before it becomes a serious concern.
Ghost ant eradication is tough since their nest is difficult to detect and these ants are largely undetectable in the early stages of infestation. Depending on the severity of the infestation, several approaches can be performed to eradicate indoor and outdoor ghost ant colonies.
Ghost ant infestations can be treated with white vinegar or apple cider vinegar as a pesticide. To make the white vinegar spray, combine white vinegar and water with a ratio of 2:1 and spray the entry points and ghost ant nesting areas completely. The majority of the ghost ants will be eliminated immediately.
Although insecticide sprays are used to eliminate ghost ants, they are less efficient than baits. This is due to the fact that spraying only kills the worker ants, not the entire ant colony. Nothing will be accomplished unless the queen is killed. If you use ant killer sprays, many and regular insecticide treatments are required to eliminate ghost ants.
Insecticide sprays are widely available commercially; simply follow the instructions printed on the spray bottle for best results. For quick results, combine the ant bait approach with insecticide spray. Sprays and dust with insecticides alone will disperse the ghost ant colonies, which might end up not being effective. Using either a liquid bait or granular bait will help with the efficacy of some insecticides.
Pest Control Company
Many homeowners try various pest control strategies and treatments, but most discover that hiring a pest management professional is the best option. Pest management professionals are the people who have the expertise, experience, and access to the right equipment and control products to accomplish the job right. An experienced pest control professional will be able to determine the ant species and suggest the appropriate treatment.
How to Prevent Ant Infestations in Your Home
It’s only natural that an ant will find its way inside your home. Because insects can enter through open doors or windows, you’ll never be able to completely eliminate bugs. Whether you’ve already dealt with your ant infestation or have yet to encounter one, we strongly advise you to follow these easy yet effective steps to avoid an ant infestation in the future:
1. Cut off sources of food
This is perhaps the simplest and most effective method to avoid an ant infestation. Ghost ants arrive in search of food to ensure the survival of their colony. There’s no need for ants to come looking if you keep food and garbage away from them. If they do, they won’t find anything. We suggest the following to maintain your home clean:
- Clean and disinfect elevated surfaces. We don’t only eat in the kitchen; you’re probably snacking in your living room or at your workplace. Wipe down and sanitize these surfaces on a regular basis to ensure that there is no food left behind to attract ants.
- Properly dispose of all trash. Take out your trash and don’t let ants locate it!
- Don’t leave your pet’s food or bowls on the ground. Establishing a feeding schedule will keep food dishes off the ground and out of the reach of ants.
- Clean up dishes. To avoid attracting ants, don’t leave dishes or leftovers on the table or in your kitchen sink. Make sure to wipe them up when you’re done. Remember to save any leftovers in airtight containers!
2. Remove ant entrances
This won’t necessarily keep ants out of your house, but it will help keep it cleaner, with fewer areas for dust and crumbs to collect. You’re wasting your time if you try to keep ants out of any of your home’s entrances. Ants are tiny and can enter your home through even the tiniest cracks. Instead, you must treat the ants from the exterior before they can get inside.
3. Eliminate safe havens for ants
If you find ants in your house, there’s a good chance you’ll find a colony nearby. If you want to keep ants out of your house, you must also keep them out of your yard. Take action when you observe mounds forming around your property and use exterminating agents on the colony and the area immediately surrounding it. Clearing out these colonies properly will remove the ghost ant colony as a whole, preventing it from expanding and establishing a new home elsewhere.
Contact Midway Pest Management for Your Ant Problems
Finding out you have ants is never fun. Ants may be on your property for a number of causes, including a lack of proper cleaning, foundation flaws, or vegetation near your home. We understand that it’s essential to evaluate all of the possible causes of an ant infestation. Our pest control experts can determine the source of the problem and assist you in eliminating the infestation.
Our team at Midway Pest Management uses proactive pest control methods and gets rid of ghost ant infestations by considering your specific circumstances. Our pest control services can ensure that you have a pest-free space for a long time. To schedule a free home inspection, contact us today.
Learn More: How Do Ghost Ants Get Into The Bathroom?