Although the sugar ants in your kitchen aren't after it, baking soda is a good way to get rid of them in the short term.
Sugar ants tend to go after sweet foods but are also attracted to nuts, breadcrumbs and water. If you have an infestation, there are three things to consider: control, short-term relief and a long-term solution.
Controlling Sugar Ants
Controlling sugar ants means keeping them out of your house. You can keep sugar ants out by creating barriers to their entry and by reducing the number of things that attract them.
Keep clean. Keeping your kitchen and food serving areas clean is the number one way to reduce the chances of a sugar ant infestation. After each meal, clean all dishes and tables. Make sure to promptly clean up any spills or fallen crumbs as well.
Remove trails. If you see sugar ants, try to locate their point of entry. Clean any surfaces where ants travel with a bleach or vinegar solution. Daily cleaning will remove the scent trail that ants leave for others to follow. The most likely areas for these trails are near entries and along walls and baseboards.
Set up a roadblock. If you find the entry point, you can create a barrier to keep sugar ants out. Sprinkle a bit of cinnamon along the area where the ants enter. Ants will avoid cinnamon like the plague.
Baking Soda: A Great Short Term Solution
If sugar ants overrun your home, your first priority is to get rid of the ones in your house. For a quick bait/poison that is safe to use around the house, mix baking soda and powdered sugar in a 1 to 1 ratio. Sprinkle this mixture where the ant concentration is greatest.
Ants have a very acidic digestive system and the baking soda will mix with the acid, generating a large amount of carbon dioxide. The punch line? Ants don't have a way to deal with the excess gas and will literally explode.
While this is a fast acting solution, it will kill the ants before they can return the bait to the nest. Eventually, other ants from the same colony may return to your kitchen.
A Long Term Sugar Ant Solution
In order to get long lasting relief from sugar ants, you'll need to deal with the colony. To create a bait/poison that will get ants where they live, mix 1 tablespoon of Borax with a cup of peanut butter or honey. Borax contains boric acid, which will cause an ant's digestive system to malfunction, resulting in death.
Place a bit of your bait on small scraps of cardboard and place these lures around the site of your infestation. The ants will be drawn to this sweet bait and take the altered food back to the nest. Although this process may take several days to a few weeks, it will ultimately wipe out the entire colony of sugar ants. Make sure to keep your Borax traps away from curious children and pets.
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