Ants are consistently a top issue in Wisconsin. Even in winter, when the warming effects of the sun prematurely awakens ants from their dormant state, you can find them inside foraging for water and food sources.
In order to implement successful ant control practices against surprise visitors any time of year, an understanding of the different types of ants found Wisconsin will save time and frustration.
When people find ants in the house, two approaches are usually taken. One option is to set bait out, which ants take back to the nest to be ingested by the colony and that’s the end of them. Or, another option is using a spray that knocks them dead in their tracks. Both might work for a day or two, but then ants start showing up again. People consistently reach out to Batzner for assistance because their solutions aren’t working in the long run.
A few reasons ants can be surprisingly difficult to get rid of include:
- Huge colonies make it difficult to eliminate all of them – from 10s to 100s of thousands of ants
- Nests are built in difficult-to-access places
- Wrong treatment method alerts them, scatters them and drives them to relocate quickly
Mike Chapel, Batzner Operations Manager, cautions, “Ants pick up shop when they feel threatened, so when the wrong bait is used, it can serve as a warning, causing them to scatter. Different ant species are attracted to different bait, depending on their taste buds and the season. That is why it is imperative that the species is identified before treatment so the correct bait will be used.”
Additionally, spraying product on the ants you can see is also mistake. “Those ants are the foragers, and have been sent out to look for food and report back to the nest,” Chapel explains. “If they turn up dead or never return, it is an alarm to relocate the nest.” So you end up killing a few, but 10s of thousands move, only to return again and again as you repeat the same treatment methods.
The Tricky Part – Making Ants Go Away For Good
- Identify the ant in order to select the correct bait. Do not spray as it may cause scattering.
- Erase pheromone trails with vinegar and water, but do not kill the ants.
- Maintain shrubs near the building to eliminate easy entry.
- Caulk windows and doors as needed to seal entry points.
- Keep food particles swept up and floors and counters clean and dry.
When to Call Pest Control
It’s time to call pest control when:
- You have taken the correct precautions, used the correct bait, and are still seeing ants
- You suspect carpenter ants; unlike other Wisconsin ant species, they can cause actual damage as they burrow through wood in the walls of your home
- You see the first one - you do not have tolerance for pests
If you find you are dealing with ants on a frequent basis, consider Batzner Pest Control’s BAN program. Focusing on immediate elimination and ongoing prevention, ants are one of the numerous pests covered on an ongoing basis.