My Fight to Do It Myself Against Ants
I have been fighting ant invasions in my bathrooms and kitchen for about two months now – at least. The ants seem to be gone, and then they are back with reinforcements. I have been using Terro Liquid Ant Bait stations and the ants crowd them for several days and then they seem to disappear. I had also tried a couple of Combat Ant Killing Bait Strips to go in harder to reach places, but the ants ignored them. This almost constant invasion is getting very stressful, since cooking or even making a salad is difficult with ants crowding onto the counter as soon as you have cleared them off.
It was suggested I make my own bait that is equal to the Terro, so I checked the various recipes online. Almost all contained Borax. It was suggested in one video that the Terro doesn't end the problem forever because the liquid only kills the adults, but not the larvae and the queen. This video suggested a drier trap would better solve that problem. It was stated that the liquid kills too fast and the ants die on their way home before they can get their poison carried there. I did see evidence for this in my bathroom. After I first put the Terro there, the entire floor was covered with dead ants. It hasn't happened since then, though.
I decided to try the easiest thing first. I poured a bit of Borax into some small plastic and metal lids. It was suggested that I make a well in the middle and put a dot of honey there. Then I was supposed to use a toothpick to stir a bit of the borax into the honey. This would be a bait station I could put anywhere children and dogs (of which I have neither) could not get them.
My honey had crystallized. So I decided to use syrup, since I don't use it anymore. There were many different kind of shallow lids. I used some from small jars, juice bottle lids, and lids or plastic snap-out flaps from vitamin bottles. So far the most popular of these stations is a plastic vitamin bottle lid using a store brand pancake syrup. You can see it in the top photo, which you can enlarge with a right click to open in a new tab. The long strip is a Combat strip. It seems more popular in the kitchen than it was in the bathroom. The active ingredient is different than in Terro and Borax. It is Fipronil. It has both good and horrible reviews on Amazon. Everyone agrees the adhesive strip doesn't work, and my experience matched this. Some say that sugar ants don't like it, and most of my ants appear to be sugar ants.
The photo below shows another idea from the video which I modified a bit. Since many of my homemade traps haven't been discovered yet or are being ignored, I decided to mix some borax with the sweetener to make an almost solid but still moist blob. Then I used a toothpick to lay it on a narrow tile ledge above the sink, since the ants were using it as a path. That seems to work better than putting it in the lids Instead it puts it right in their little faces.
The last photo shows three methods at work – the almost gone Terro baits, the Combat strip, and my own blob of goo on the toothpick on the tile. I'm hoping tomorrow morning I will see the ants in full retreat. It would be nice to get my counters back.
Would you believe those little beasties were even climbing the cord to the blinds?
Pictures and content are original and may not be used without permission, B. Radisavljevic, Copyright 2014, All Rights Reserved
Image Credit » I took the photo and edited it.