Ants are also attracted to moist areas, and bathrooms often provide them with freestanding water. Ants are constantly exploring for food to take back to their colony. When they find a food source they ferry it back to their lair in a line made of thousands of ants. Following these lines allows you to find either the location of an indoor nest, or the pathway they are using to enter the home. |
Ants commonly found in your bathroom are considered moisture ants. In residential pest control, moisture ants can be one of the trickiest pests. This is because traditional treatments alone are not enough to battle these little insects, and they're often the sign of a bigger problem.
If ant infestations are left alone, they will grow in size. Ants search for new areas to colonize, and will begin to spread throughout the house. In the case of carpenter ants, they can cause damage to wooden structures as they tunnel into them to nest. This is particularly a problem in the bathroom where the wood is moist, making it easy to tunnel. Ants are also unsightly and their bites can be painful.
Ants are commonly found in the bathroom. They are attracted by chemical odors, as well as scents coming from drains. A drain that hasn't been used for a period of time will contain stagnate water, as well as fermented human hair.
If ants are seen in a bathroom, follow them to find their source. Immediately wipe up freestanding water and clean up odorous areas. If the ants lead you to a crack leading outside, caulk up the crack. Wash the remaining ants with soap and water, effectively disrupting the chemical trail they follow to food and water sources. Bait is an effective method of control if you suspect the ant colony is inside. Ants carry the bait back to their queen, which poisons the very center of their colony. This can dramatically reduce the population of the colony. If the infestation is so pervasive that the ants persist regardless of your efforts, a professional pest control service may be needed. Professionals are able to safely use pesticides and fumigants that penetrate deeper into surfaces. This is especially useful with carpenter ants, which may be nesting far beneath the surface.
When moisture ants move indoors, they often nest in wood that is decayed by fungus. They frequently find damaged wood in areas like bath traps. They sometimes nest inside walls where there is a plumbing leak. There have been cases of these ants nesting in damp soil in crawlspaces. In these situations, the workers made mounds of excavated soil in the crawlspace.
If the ants have nested in damp or damaged wood, correcting the moisture problem and replacing the wood will be a priority. In damp or humid areas, treated wood may be a good replacement.
Liquid insecticide can be effective against nests of moisture ants. Drenching the nest directly with the insecticide will provide the quickest control. If the ants have nested under a slab, it may be necessary to apply insecticide under the concrete. The local pest control professional has the equipment necessary to make these applications.
The first thing to do when seeking to control a Moisture ant problem is to locate any sources of moisture in your home. Check especially bathrooms and kitchens for leaks, but also do a close inspection of wall studs, framing, and outdoor wood that may be moist and rotting.
If you find that you have a serious infestation of Moisture ants, you're most likely dealing with bigger problems than ants. It is important to kill off any colonies nesting in or around your home, but the problem won't be permanently fixed until all moist and rotting wood is removed and replaced. If numbers are unmanageable on your own, seek the employment of a pest control professional to rid your home of this water-loving pest.
A professional will always start by identifying the source of the ant infestation. This will lead them to the colony, then they can take action to eliminate it. The benefit of employing a professional is that they use commercial-grade pesticide and they know how to use it. Bait ‘em and Hook ‘em: Bait and trap the ants to control numbers immediately. Obviously this is fruitless if the nests have not been destroyed, but can be a good way to locate the nest or kill off any stragglers. Powder or dust pesticides are occasionally used when colonies are widespread. Powders or dusts cover a larger surface area.
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