Are you dealing with ants in the summer months? Given that Texas boasts an impressive variety of ant species, ant infestations are an unpleasant rite of passage for most Houston homeowners.
Of the over 2,500 ant species, more than 250 are native to the Lone Star state. There are several prominent species in Houston alone. Acrobat ants, carpenter ants, fire ants, pharaoh ants, raspberry crazy ants, and rover ants are just a few.
While killing a few may make you feel victorious, it’s better to know how to keep them out for good.
What Attracts Ants?
Ants enter your Houston home in search of food and water. Any place you eat is especially attractive to ants. The following areas are especially high traffic:
- Kitchen countertops
- Food storage
- Under the sink
- Open trash bins
- Pet food dishes
Health Risks from Ants
Although ants may not be as scary as spiders or rodents, you do not want to share your space with them. They generally pose mild health risks to humans, most notably itchy and irritating bites.
Some people also have severe ant allergies, which can lead to anaphylaxis. This is more likely if you disturb a fire ant mound. Symptoms of anaphylaxis include difficulty breathing, dizziness, itching, hives, swelling in the tongue and throat, stomach cramps, nausea, and diarrhea.
Tips to Keep Ants Out
Here are 10 tips to keep ants out of your Houston home.
Get Rid of Scent Trails
Keep an eye on the ants. While you can’t see it, observing their common pathways will help you determine where the scent trail starts and ends. Then make a lemon juice spray or a 50/50 solution of undiluted vinegar and water. Spray the mixture to get rid of ant trails.
Maintain Your Home and Lawn
Cleanliness is critical to deterring a potential ant colony. Regularly sweep, vacuum, and mop floors, and keep bushes, trees, and vegetation around the lawn trimmed. Do not keep piles of wood, leaves, or any other debris near your walls.
Good sanitation is a must if you want an ant-free home. Clean up any dead insects on your property, which can lead to secondary pest problems. You should also avoid allowing dirty dishes to accumulate in your sink.
Ants are attracted to water sources, so repair leaking pipes and remove any obstructions in your gutters. Also, consider setting up a humidifier in rooms with high moisture.
Routine Waste Management
Be diligent about waste management, and always use trash cans and recycling containers with sealed covers. Regularly empty indoor garbage bins and refrain from storing bins directly against exterior walls.
Seal Up Possible Entry Points
Use caulk to seal up cracks in your foundation and install door sweeps and weatherstripping to deter ants.
Refrain from DIY Methods of Elimination
Some DIY methods may help ease the problem, but more often than not, relief is temporary. What’s more, some non-professional elimination strategies and baits may worsen the issue.
Professional Ant-Focused Prevention and Control
Contacting a pest control expert is a fail-safe approach to keep ants out of your home. They have the skills, experience, and tools to do the job right.
Get Rid of Ants with Romney Pest Control
Are ants taking over your space? Romney Pest Control can help with everything, from the initial inspection to ridding your home of an existing infestation. We can also put preventative measures in place to help keep your house ant-free. Protect your Houston home from pests with the help of Romney Pest Control!