Pest management requires a systemic approach when dealing with ants. Our professional technicians must draw on his or her knowledge of each specific species, their habits and their biology, in order to determine the most effective strategy for controlling the infestation. Proper identification will help the professional find nests, entry points, and other infestation signs. For example, pavement ants build nests in soil, while carpenter ants nest just outside trees or stumps. Worker ants gain entry to buildings through cracks in a slab or expansion joints. In addition, the conditions leading to the infestation should be examined. Our professional technicians meet with the client to gain essential information.
Environmental factors must be corrected for there to be long term control of ants. After the species, nests, and entry points are identified; there are environmental changes that should be addressed. Modifying the habitat or environment limits the resources of the colony. This could include, poor sanitation, moisture from ventilation, clogged gutters or leaky pipes, earth to wood contact, and stacked wood and debris surrounding the structure. Mechanical methods such as trimming shrubs, removing vegetation and caulking entry points can be used to prevent access to the building. These changes along with professional treatments such as dusting the void, using bait, or treating the mound can create an ant free environment.
Applying a treatment around the perimeter of the building using a residual formula or a granular can exterminate an ant infestation. Using a slower acting, non repellent insecticide causes ants to pick up the insecticide and take it back to the nest. Ants nesting in voids within a structure can be treated with dust, aerosol, or foam. Ants nesting around wood such as structural timber, fence posts, or landscape logs can be treated with aerosol, dust, or liquid products. These can also be applied to nests located in stumps and tree holes. Landscape such as pine straw, mulch chips, and/or dead leaves might reduce the effectiveness of insecticides. The mulch should be raked back for application. The surface can be treated and the mulch moved back into place. Ants nesting under stacks of material such as lumber or bricks usually require unstacking the materials so that the exposed colonies in the area can be treated using a water based formula.
A bait must attract the ants so it will take it back and share it with the colony. New active ingredients in gel baits provide professionals with more options for successful baiting. The selection of baits typically depends on the food preference of the ant. Proper sanitation of the bait area is also crucial. If other sources of food are competing with the bait then it will be less effective. Our professional technicians can use multiple bait approaches during the service to gain control of the ant population. The ants should be given about a week to feed on the baits prior to initiating any follow-up attempts.