The Covid-19 lockdown means that some services which you may have taken for granted before will no longer be easily accessible – and for some problems that will be more of an issue, such as pest control.
While staying home, you certainly don’t want to be sharing your space with household pests.
Ideally, on discovery of an insect invasion you would normally be able to call in a professional pest control service or nip out and pick up a deterrent – which is not so easy under lockdown.
There is hope, however, thanks to DIY methods that can help to keep problems such as insect invasions at bay.
DIY solutions for ant invasions
Ants tend to be a problem that emerges at the start of the summer months – so that could be anytime soon.
Once in your home ants can get everywhere and become a real pest. Plenty of homes must be able to sympathise with returning home from holiday in the middle of a hot spell to the horror of ants running riot in kitchen cupboards and across worktops.
The good news about ants though is that while they may be a real nuisance, they are not known to cause harm or spread disease. Still if you have an ant invasion in your home you will want to take it in hand quickly before you become overwhelmed with the little creepy crawlies.
As with most household pests, ants are looking for food and shelter. In the case of ants they are particularly fond of sugary foods.
The main thing ants need to complete their invasion is a way to get into your home – due to their size this is harder to guard against.
Once they have found a nice easy food supply and a way in, ants will lay down a scent to follow that will keep them – and a growing army of ants – coming back day after day.
Usually, ants have already set up a permanent home in your garden with nests often being found in soil – and this is where they will head back to with the spoils they pick up in your kitchen.
How to stop ants in their tracks
Following the golden rules of pest prevention also applies to stop ants from becoming a household pest. These include:
- Keeping the kitchen clean and free of food crumbs
- Ensuring areas where food is eaten also remain clean
- Checking – and fixing – potential points of entry for household pets on walls windows and doors.
- Safely storing all rubbish and waste, indoors and outdoors
Should ants make their way into your home while you are unable to call in outside help or pick up repellent there are some good DIY solutions that will help.
A major part of ants returning to your home is the scent they have laid down, which they -and other ants – will follow to find the food source. Getting rid of this scent is a good place to start as it will disrupt the trail.
The first step is to work out where the ants are getting in and, if possible, seal the hole. Then having watched for the point of entry wash down the ground that they travel across to remove the scent using disinfectant, bleach, water and vinegar or just soapy water.
Scents that will help to repel ants
Scents form a good part of your arsenal in deterring ants as certain smells will repel them, these include:
- Pepper (and other spices)
In tackling an ant invasion, mixing vinegar, lemon juice or mint oil with water (50-50 for vinegar, 2 cups with drops of mint oil, ¼ lemon juice to ¾ water) and spraying it on surfaces and around kitchen cabinets will help to repel ants.
Putting mint leaves around the outside of the house, or sprinkling pepper in affected areas will also help to keep ants away.
If you find a nest, pouring boiling water or a mixture of washing up liquid and water will help to kill the ants.
Ideally, when discovering an ants’ nest on your property, pest control experts can ensure these are fully removed to prevent a repeat of the problem.
If you need advice on dealing with problem pests at your property get in touch with Pest Busters.
Pest Busters (Birmingham)
Birmingham Office, Highfield Farm, Middle Ln, King’s Norton, Birmingham B38 0DX
0121 695 9076