Many people confuse carpenter ants with termites, though there is actually a huge difference between these two species of insects. However, both threaten wooden structures used in home construction, causing carpenter ants to be just as destructive as termites. A colony of carpenter ants will not usually make a nest in the home. However, after getting their fill of goodies like food and sweets in household cabinets, these ants may settle in within the wooden structures of the house. Here are tips for addressing an infestation.
You will need:
Step 1: Locate the main carpenter ant nest, which can take time. If you see the ants within your home, this does not mean the main colony is there. The queen is usually located near the main nest. The ants may travel far for food so finding the main nest often requires detective skills.
Begin the search at night when these ants are looking for food. Set up honey or another ant bait somewhere that the ants have visited. Let the insects find this bait and follow them to see where they go, using the flashlight to find your way. The trail may end in a tree or rotten piece of wood. Place the end of the stethoscope against the area and listen for a crunching sound that indicates a large colony. Follow this process to identify all satellite colonies.
Step 2: Drill holes in both the main nest and the satellite colonies, keeping each hole small so pesticide will not escape. Spray enough pesticide into each hole to exterminate all ants dwelling within it, with the ultimate goal of killing the queen.
Step 3: Clean your house and store food in containers that ants cannot access. Use the saw to cut tree branches that are in contact with the home. Sprinkle ant deterrent powder around the perimeter of the home. Stack firewood on a pallet or shelf, not on the ground. When a food or beverage spill occurs inside the home, immediately clean it up.
Step 4: Place ant bait in entrances to the main nest and each satellite colony. This bait attracts the insects but a poisonous ingredient kills ants that eat it. The bait may take time to kill all the ants so allow about two weeks. If ants are still present, replace the bait.