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Controlling Ants in Your Home

You see one ant inside your house.  Then two… Before you know it there’s a line of ants invading your home.  Argentine ants are frequent invaders in California homes. They are tiny (1/8 inch). They come inside a few at a time at first (the scouts), and then in long lines, following scent trails to a food source.

If you deal with ants when they first come inside, a few simple steps can take care of the problem.

  • Find what ants are after and where they are entering the room.
  • Spray lines of ants with soapy water and wipe up with a sponge. It's important to erase the scent trails they leave behind.
  • Block entry points temporarily with tape. Caulking and weatherstripping cracks and gaps should be done to stop them.
  • Place a bait station or sticky traps in an out-of-the-way spot on the line the ants have been following. Bait stations are much safer for humans, pets, and the environment than sprays.
  • When the ants are gone, remove the bait so you don't attract more ants.
  • If ants get into a houseplant, move it outside. Fill the pot with water and the ants will emerge. Once they're gone you can re-pot the plant.

The best way to manage ants is to keep them outside.

  • Locate where ants are entering the home and caulk any cracks.
  • Weather strip doord and windows.
  • Fix leaking faucets and pipes.


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