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Small, black, sugar ants can appear anywhere in your home! The clusters of these tiny black creatures not only look gross, but it’s hard to get them all killed. Now, as the name suggests, these ants are sugar scavengers. They roam around your house in search of sugar.
If it is the US black sugar-hunter ant species, then they will produce a unique and coconut-like smell when they are killed. Piss ants are the dirtiest. The urine-like smell they produce is super gross.
I know how difficult it is for homeowners to find the group of these black ants and kill them. So, here I have discussed a few effective tricks that work wonders.
Some of them are natural remedies that include ingredients we all have in our kitchen, while others may require pest control and other advanced tools. Before I get to that, let’s understand the piss ants and how they find their way into your home.
Tiny Black Ants – What Are They and How They Enter Your Home?
You were cleaning the kitchen and missed some sweet syrup on the kitchen countertop. The next thing you know – a cluster of small ants have gathered around the syrup, waiting for their turns to take a dip in the sweet pool. You can say these ants have a sweet spot for sugar and sweet products. It could happen to anyone.
No matter how carefully you clean your rooms, kitchen, and gardens, it does not take time for these sugar-scavengers to smell sugar. The worst part is they never come alone.
One ant smells the food, finds the crevices and other entry points to your house, and leave the scent trail for their nest mates. Now, following these scent trails, the others enter your home and gather around the food.
Now, there are many ant species that are attracted to sweets. In fact, there are over 12,000 species of ants and the only thing they have in common is their attraction to sweets. Even the traces of the food on your plates or countertops are enough to lure the group of ants.
The piss ants may not bite or harm you in any way. However, they have shown to contaminate the food and the places they roam. So, how do you kill them and what can be done to ensure they never get in your house?
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For starters, grab a vacuum and clean every nook and cranny of your house thoroughly. Mop the floors and remove any traces of sweets. Cleaning is required especially when you have had a dessert or any sweet snack. If they have already infested your home, here’s what you can do.
Herbs and Essential Oils for Sugar Ants
It is believed that bay leaves deter ants and other pests. Place it inside your cupboards and at the entrance of your home to keep the ants, moths, flies, and other unwanted pests away. Pests cannot stand the strong and bitter odor of herbs.
You could use other bitter-smelling plants as well. The best part is the leaves do not necessarily need to be fresh. Even the dried leaves will work wonders in keeping ants out of your home.
Most of us don’t have bay leaves, and when the ants have already infested our homes, the last thing on our mind is to go shopping for herbs and ant-killers. You can use the whole clove as an alternative to bay leaves.
Even if you don’t have any herbs handy, there are quite a few easy options. I use pepper, lavender oils, coffee grounds, cucumber peels, lemons, oranges, and other home ingredients for repelling ants. And they work surprisingly well.
The ingredients I have mentioned have an incredibly strong odor that no ant could stand. So, there is no way the ants will be lured into a house where the entrances and other areas are protected with coffee beans and pepper. The moist cucumber peels are also a great natural ant-repelling ingredient.
Soap and Detergent
You could also use a mild detergent or insect-killing soap, mixed with the water, to deter ants. It will help keep your place clean and ant-free. However, soap isn’t an effective option when it comes to killing the piss ants colonies.
They must be small, but they are not weak, and their gross smell is not something you can tolerate. If you want a quick solution that works on nearly all types of sugar ants, then vinegar is your best bet.
Try Vinegar Solution
Vinegar is your ultimate cleaning detergent and ant-deterrent. Take a spray bottle and fill it with one part water and one part apple cider vinegar. Not only does this solution kill the trail of ants, but it helps you get rid of the ants without having to bear the awful odor.
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As I mentioned earlier, ants need a trail to find an entry to your home. Despite being so small, they are very good at finding the entrance and moving along the trails to reach their food. So, the best way to block all their entry points is by spraying the vinegar and water solutions.
Spray it near the crevices, along baseboards, at entrances, and other possible entry points.
If they have found their way to your kitchen or bedroom, spray this vinegar solution over them. It is only a matter of seconds before they get killed. Gather the dead ants in the paper towel and throw them in the trash.
Ants are super active and strong in the morning and evening. So, try to use this home remedy during these times for the best results. Once the ants are killed, wipe the surface thoroughly with the same spray to clean the area and eliminate the odor.
Chemical Solutions for Sugar Ants
The basic home remedies work well. So, there is a good chance you will not have to use any chemical formula to kill sugar ants. However, if nothing works, your last resort is chemical cleaning detergents and ant-repelling sprays.
Now, if you are working with chemical solutions, make sure you keep them away from kids and pets.
Use the Ant Bait
Baits contain Borax or Boric acid that can kill different species of ants and other pests slowly. It takes 24-48 hours for the poison to show results.
I highly recommend this option as it happens to be the most effective way to get the ants killed once and for all. And, you don’t have to worry about the ants suspecting anything.
They must be clever, but when it comes to sugar, they simply can’t resist it. You can find the sweet ant baits at your local grocery shop. Make sure your kids and pets do not touch the bait, as boric acid is harmful to humans.
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As I mentioned before, sugar ants build a trail that gives other ants a way to enter your home and get to the food. Alternatively, the ants can bring food to the ant colonies. You must have seen these little creatures carrying food. Well, they take it to their shelters.
Once the ant colonies eat the poisonous sweet bait, they will fall sick and eventually die. You must note that this trick works slowly. It may take the chemical a day or two to kill them.
Break Down Their Pheromones
The scents that ants leave for the other ants to follow are called pheromones. To break the pheromones, you need to sanitize your kitchen countertops and dining areas with a chemical formula.
So, even if you spill the maple syrup on the floor, there is no way ants will be lured to your house. However, you need to wipe the dining table and kitchen with an all-purpose cleaner every night for this trick to work.
It’s hard to kill the ant nests once they have infested your house. It isn’t only about killing them, but you have to find the crevices or areas they entered from and seal those spots. Ants feed on nothing but sweet products.
So, the best precaution, and the one I prefer, would be cleanliness. Of course, you vacuum and mop your floors daily, but that isn’t enough.
Every time you have a beverage, soft drinks, and sweet products, wipe the area with an all-purpose cleaner instantly. Even tiny particles of food that are not visible to your naked eye will lure the ant colonies to your home.
There is little to no chance that the above-mentioned techniques won’t work. In most cases, vinegar alone does wonder. A few drops of vinegar mixed with equal part water will deter and kill ants. Still, you can call a pest control team and get your home inspected for sugar ant infestation.
They will seal the holes and entry points to keep all kinds of pests out of your home.