Residents of Kansas City and the surrounding area have to deal with ant infestations year-round. Ants don’t discriminate! Even the cleanest and expensive homes can suffer from ant infestations. While most ants prefer to live outdoors in nests around your property, modern dwellings provide ample food, water, and shelter, which causes these pests to take up residence. Small openings such as tiny tears in window screening, cracks and crevices around the exterior of your home, or gaps around utility lines can provide easy access for ant activity.
So you’ve found ants in your home. Now what? You may turn to DIY and store-bought products that are touted as quick fixes or “natural” solutions. But what works, and what’s a waste of time? Let’s narrow down the options with tips from the pest control experts at Schendel Pest Services.
What are the most common ants in Kansas City?
Human made structures such as homes and businesses provide a never-ending food supply for many species of ants. Most of these have adapted well to the temperature extremes in our region, and have established themselves as indoor pests. Some species that you are likely to encounter are:
- Big-Headed Ants
- Pavement Ants
- Carpenter Ants
- Cornfield Ants
- Harvester Ants
- Odorous House Ants
- Mound Ants
- Thief Ants
Ants come in different colors and sizes. If you encounter a very large ant that appears to be around ½” in length, they’re most likely carpenter ants. In addition to being a nuisance, carpenter ant colonies can cause damage to your home. While most house ants are only a nuisance problem for the homeowner, a few species can carry disease. It is best to address any ant activity seen in or around your home.
How did ants get into my house?
Most ants live outdoors in satellite colonies around your property. These nests don’t look like mounds, nests created by wildlife, or the like, so you probably won’t see them. If they are in your yard, it is only a matter of time until they find the house.
Ants need three things to live: food, shelter and water. If they can find their way indoors, your home will supply them with many. If you are prone to seeing ants attracted to uncovered food or even pet food during the spring and summer months, a colony has found the food source. They will continue to come to the food source until they are eradicated, or the food is no longer available.
Carpenter ants enjoy damp, rotting wood. Old wooden window or door frames are common places for carpenter ants to infest. Water damage around your home can attract carpenter ants and their growing colonies.
Tips for Preventing Ant Infestations
Homeowners who are concerned or who are currently battling an ant infestation can do a few things to prevent these pests.
- Maintain a Clean Environment: Sweep up fallen crumbs and vacuum diligently within your home. Wipe up any spilled water or other beverages and clean the surface immediately.
- Protect Food & Water: Store food in airtight containers and seal beverages to prevent ant feeding. Move birdseed or grass seed in your garage to airtight containers.
- Repair Water Damage: Carpenter ants are especially attracted to water damage and moist conditions within wood and insulation around your home. Seal gaps around utility lines to prevent any kind of ants from getting into your home. Small entry points can draw ants to infest under dishwashers and sinks.
- Trim Foliage: Cut back any branches that are touching your home. These can create natural bridges for ants to travel from trees onto your roof or other spaces on your home.
- Clean Gutters: Clogged gutters create stagnant water. Stagnant water is highly conducive to ant breeding.
- Seal Your Home: Repair torn window screens, replace old weather stripping, repair broken vents, and seal up cracks and crevices around the exterior of your home.
How can Schendel Pest Services get rid of ants in my house?
Contact Schendel Pest Services today to take the first step in getting rid of these pests in your home and yard. There are many different species of ants in Kansas City, which cause endless frustration for local homeowners. Instead of continuously patching the problem, let our professional services get rid of it for good. Call us or fill out the contact form on this page for a free inspection!