Carpenter Ants – Bait and Traps

Carpenter Ants on House

Structural Damage

Carpenter ants are one of the most significant structural pests across New England. Once an infestation is discovered, immediate pest control treatment is necessary to prevent the wood-chewing pests from causing further structural damage. In most cases, an integrated pest management plan is essential to completely rid carpenter ants from structures.

Do-It-Yourself Solutions

A number of do-it-yourself and over-the-counter ant control solutions are available for people experiencing a carpenter ant infestation, but consulting a professional pest control expert is the best way to get rid of the insects. Boric acid mixtures are the most widely used DIY baits for controlling carpenter ants. A variety of suggested mixtures are available online, most of which call for boric acid to be combined with water and some sort of sugary substance.

Bait solutions need to be properly formulated, with elements correctly portioned and mixed. Even then, DIY solutions offer no guarantee to eliminate invading ants. Homemade baits may kill ants that encounter the solutions but tend to be less effective at spreading the toxic ingredient throughout colonies.

Baits & Traps

Packaged ant-killer baits show somewhat better pest-control results than DIY methods. Typically available in dust and gel forms, packaged ant-control solutions are designed to be picked up by ants and then spread throughout colonies.

Dust Baits
Dusts are applied into areas that carpenter ants travel through. The dust clings to ants when they walk through it and then is passed onto others during grooming behaviors. After ingesting the dust during grooming, carpenter ants usually die off in a few hours to a few days.

Dusts have limited extermination abilities because they must be applied in areas the ants travel through frequently. Additionally, dusts can only be used for indoor treatment.

Gel Baits
Gel baits may be applied to cracks and crevices carpenter ants inhabit. Most gel baits are high in sugar and moisture content, and are extremely attractive to ants. The pests will be drawn out from their nests (foraging for food), ingest the bait, and feed the gel to other ants throughout the colony.

Most gels feature delayed toxic action in order to maximize the spread throughout the colony. Gels use toxic active ingredients that disrupt the ants’ nervous systems, killing them three to five days after ingestion. Gels usually only remain palatable/effective for 12 to 14 days after being applied.

Due to the carpenter ant’s unique biology, some baits for other ant species are not effective control measures. Inversely, carpenter ant baits do not work well against some other species of ants.

Control & Removal

To ensure proper elimination of carpenter ants, homeowners should call professional pest control services. With in-depth knowledge of pest habits and control methods, pest management professionals can properly identify pests and tailor management plans to specific situations. Calling pest control services saves homeowners time and gives them peace of mind by having experienced professionals control the problem.

Homeowners may also find it cheaper to call exterminators rather than waste time and money on failed do-it-yourself remedies. In addition to eliminating current infestations, professional pest management services can employ preventative measures to ensure pests won’t return.

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