The Victorian climate and environment provide perfect conditions for ants to thrive.
Australia has just over 1,300 known species of ants, which can be identified by elbowed antennae and a shelter waist formed by a distinctive node-like structure. Ants live as organised colonies of hundreds of thousands of ants and are a general household nuisance when they get into your home and particularly, into your food cupboards.
There are various types of ants that infest both residential and commercial properties including the Pharoah ant, coastal brown ant, black house ant, Singapore ant, green-headed ant, Argentine white ant, red imported fire ant and fire ant. Termites are sometimes referred to as white ants.
The colour of ants varies among species and they can either be white or black or green. They live in nests anywhere in or around buildings and they hide in stumps, wall cavities, under foundations or on lawns. Ant management programs are dedicated to identify all locations where ants might be living and seeking refuge in and around your home.
Ants enter buildings via the tiniest wall cracks in search of water and greasy or sweet food substances in store rooms or kitchen. When they locate a food source, they leave an invisible chemical trail containing pheromones for others to follow later.
When ant colonies are disturbed by animals or humans, they quickly relocate. Ants actively avoid anything that poses as a threat to their colonies.
The lifetime of an ant is said to be about 7 years and 15 years for the queen. It is believed that ants are in all continents except Antarctica and some large islands such as Hawaiian, Greenland and Iceland islands. The ants obtain food directly or indirectly as predators, scavengers or herbivores. The biggest numbers of ants are omnivorous and a few are special feeders.
Prevention of Ants
If you are concerned about ant activity in your home or business, there are some simple and effective ant repellent and deterrent measures that you can put in place.
Ants come in to your home to look for food. They are attracted to anything that is sweet and sticky, which is why you find ant sin kitchen cupboards and in areas where food is kept.
Here are some tips to prevent ant infestation:
- Clear up food and spillages straight away.
- Sweep any food crumbs from under your kitchen appliances and units
- Store food in airtight containers wherever possible
- Clean up pet food that isn’t eaten straight away.
- Block off entry points for ants – seal cracks and crevices around your doors and window frames.
- In the garden, keep your compost closed and make sure all rubbish bins have tightly sealed lids.
If you are keen to try an organic method of ant control, tried and tested methods include placing cinnamon or garlic around the kitchen, spraying vinegar or apple cider, sprinkling black pepper, pouring boiling water or planting mint plants around your home.
For expert help with deterring ants it is important to get professional help. Termite Solutions Victoria understand the different types of ants and habits and offer the most effective and appropriate solution. All methods are safe for people and pets and you will see results almost immediately.