Ants!

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by dreich3075, Mar 6, 2011.

  1. dreich3075

    dreich3075 LawnSite Member
    from Ct
    Posts: 36

    SO I just bought a house in December and now that the warm weather is approaching the ants are beginning to come out. It started with 1 or 2 a day now its more like 5 to 10 a day. I believe they are carpenter ants but I am not positive. The house is clean, there is not food laying around or drinks left out. What can I do?
     
  2. Ric

    Ric LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,946

    dreich

    Modern pesticides are not only effective but inexpensive compared to the old days of crawling the attic to find Carpentar Ant nests. What you give up is a little speed in gaining control. The best pesticide work slowly so they can travel all the up the food chain before the first morality. However it is not what you use but how you use it that makes a difference in Pest Control. Map out all areas where you see carpentar ants and how often you see them there. These are the spots you want to apply a treatment to.

    From a Pragmatic point of view, Maxi Force Carpentar Ant Bait with a Fipronil AI might be your first choice. It is relatively safe, inexpensive and effect. As a bait it attracts the Ants the same as a big meal deal. They carry it home to momma and in about 5 to 6 weeks there are no signs of even newly hatched Ants. It will take a couple weeks to notice a reduction of ants but then they will start to go away even faster.

    I gave you a Simple & Effective cure. Sometimes they don't always work and we have to plan B. If you need or want instant knock down call a Professional, that is how we make our living.
     
  3. dreich3075

    dreich3075 LawnSite Member
    from Ct
    Posts: 36

    Thank you very much for the information. Im going to try that and see what happens. Thanks again!
     
  4. Ric

    Ric LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,946

    Good Luck:)
     
  5. rlitman

    rlitman LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,503

    Well put. You want a bait that works slowly enough to get spread throughout the nest, and don't just be spreading (or heaven forbid spraying) pesticides everywhere. Many (especially home store sprays) are better at repelling ants than killing them. That won't reduce the colony population, just make things appear worse in areas you haven't treated.
    Better pesticides don't repel at all, and contain baits to attract the ants. One thing to note is that some ants are more attracted to sugary baits, while some prefer the savory (protein and fat). Carpenter ants prefer the sugary baits. There are lots of references on this, and on how to identify what type of ant you're dealing with, such as:
    http://lancaster.unl.edu/pest/resources/antbait267.shtml
    http://www.terro.com/guide-ants.php
    If you choose to make your own baits (a mixture of honey or peanut butter with boric acid is often used, and is what is used in many bait stations you find at the store too) do NOT overdo the boric acid, thinking more must be better. Too much repels the ants, and they don't take the bait home.

    My big question though is: are you sure it is carpenter ants? They're pretty easy to identify, and only nest in rotting wood. Unlike termites, they don't eat into good wood, so unless you have a wood pile next to your house, if you have a carpenter ant infestation in your house, you've got rotting boards and water intrusion. These are structural issues that need to be addressed. I would try to find the colony, and once exposed, dust it with boric acid.
    Unless you have a wood pile next to your house, carpenter
     
  6. Ric

    Ric LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,946

    rlitman

    Making homemade baits is really not as productive as you make it sound. Commercial baits are so Cheap and effective that it is not worth the efford to make your own baits.

    However one trick I like is to spray a smooth card stock with either Transport or Temidor and place a bait in the middle.
     
  7. rlitman

    rlitman LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,503

    Sorry, I didn't want to make it sound productive. Commercial baits are not only cheap, but the stations are more rain and animal resistant that it isn't worth doing yourself, even if the contents are so cheap and easy to make. However, there are a lot of "recipes" out there on the net, and it is good to know what's in the baits you're buying.
     
  8. Ric

    Ric LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,946

    rlitman

    The key to Bait management is to rotate both the AI and the Pheromone.
     
  9. Duekster

    Duekster LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 7,961

    Good stuff here.
     
  10. nik

    nik LawnSite Member
    Posts: 184

    Fipronil is in Termidor which is about the most popular product used in the structural pest control industry. Also in Frontline. It is a very good ingredient for most ants.

    Carpenter ants do prefer rotting wood and will definitely start there. They are not above attacking unrotted wood (ie, your house) once they get going. They are worse on houses than termites in the Pacific NW. I've seen them chew into a stack of plywood burrowing into each board.

    But for sure, get under your house if you can and see if there is any wet wood touching the ground or poking through the vapor barrier. Or under porch/deck. As mentioned firewood is a great attractor for them. I cringe every time I see someone stack their winter wood up against the house.
     

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