Florida sugar ants may sound harmless, but if you’ve got them in your home you know they’re not. Florida sugar ants in the home can even damage your electrics.
To stop them from coming back again and again, you need to take decisive action. But what’s the best way to do this? And are there any solutions that you can try at home, or is this a job for the pros?
Let’s dive into 7 tips for dealing with Florida sugar ants.
1. Get To Know Them
Before thinking about how to get rid of sugar ants, you need to understand a bit about them.
Florida sugar ant is the local name for a very tiny species of ants properly called Argentine ants. They live in very large colonies, large enough in some cases to infest a city block!
They’re called sugar ants for a reason – they love anything sweet. Just like for many of us, the lure of sugary foods is too much to resist. When they find them, they send out signals and the rest of the colony starts piling in.
2. Remove their Food
One of the keys to getting rid of sugar ants is to remove any potential sources of food. Remember, they’re tiny, so you can’t afford to overlook even the smallest crumb.
Make sure that all of your food is sealed in airtight containers. Also, make sure that any jars you store in the cupboard do not have anything sweet and sticky on the outside. A little jelly on the side of a jar is like an all-you-can-eat buffet to these tiny invaders.
3. Clean and Clean Some More
We all like to keep our kitchens clean and tidy, but there are places food can hang out that you might not think of.
As well as wiping down your counters, it’s good to keep an eye on the toaster crumb tray. If you’re toasting pop tarts, there are bound to be flecks of frosting in those crumbs! Florida sugar ants will be all over them.
Also, we often forget under the fridge. Even in the most immaculate homes, we’re not pulling the fridge out every time we sweep the kitchen.
Sugary crumbs can easily accumulate there. They signal a smorgasbord for these Florida ant pests.
4. Time For Poison
There are many types of ant poison on the market. Ant spray may kill them instantly, but it doesn’t really solve the problem. It won’t deter others from coming in – they’ll just find another route.
Liquid ant bait is available on the market that works a little differently. The ants consume the bait and then return to the nest. They then share it with other ants in the colony.
If everything goes according to plan, this can start killing large numbers of Florida sugar ants in the colony over the next 24-48 hours.
These types of ant bait typically use borax. Borax is a common household product. Used in small quantities, it is not usually harmful to humans.
However, if you ingest it, it can cause nasty symptoms such as diarrhea and vomiting. It can also irritate the skin and respiratory system. Choose your product carefully, and make sure that it is safe for use around humans and animals.
5. Set Traps
If you prefer, you can make your own Florida ant traps. These can be made in several ways, but most include mixing something sweet with borax.
Again, always make sure that children and pets cannot get access to these traps as they could be dangerous for their health.
Take some borax purchased from the laundry aisle at the supermarket and mix it with something sweet. This could be jam, jelly, or plain old sugar. The resulting sticky liquid can then be placed on a saucer and left where you know the ants will visit.
The idea is the same – the ants take the borax-laced sweets back to the colony and spread the poison.
6. Stink Them Out
You can also try to repel Florida sugar ants using odors that they hate. Happily, the ones they hate the most are natural scents that most humans love!
The first option is using cloves. Cloves smell pleasant to humans but are like kryptonite to ants. They hate their spicy aroma and will stay well away.
Although it looks a little untidy, leave whole cloves out in areas you know the ants will visit.
Another alternative is mint. A few drops of peppermint oil around the home, especially the kitchen, can be enough to warn off the ‘scout’ ants that the colony sends out from time to time. Even planting mint around the perimeter of your home can help to scare them off.
Finally, one that doesn’t smell so pleasant to us – vinegar.
Make a solution of two cups of vinegar in a gallon of water. Use this to wipe down counters and repel Florida ants at the same time.
7. Get the Professionals In
Professional pest control companies specialize in eliminating Florida sugar ants from your home. They don’t just exterminate the tiny critters you see running around.
They will perform a thorough investigation of your home and yard. Based on this, they’ll come up with a bespoke plan for treating your ant problem. They’ll find their nests and treat them in an environmentally friendly way.
Their solutions last much longer than anything you can buy over the counter. Plus, they are safe for everyone in the family, pets included.
Call in the Pros for Florida Sugar Ants
Florida sugar ants are tiny but determined!
No matter how much you clean and try to repel them, you may find that they just won’t take the hint. If you’ve exhausted all DIY options, it’s time to get the big guns in.
At One Two Tree Pest Free, we specialize in neutralizing the pests of southern Florida. The climate makes southern Florida the perfect hangout for a huge variety of home invaders. We’ve got solutions and experience in dealing with all of them.
Click here to contact us for a free quote today!