Getting rid of those pesky ants in your home

Monday, April 9, 2018

Nothing is more disturbing than looking on your kitchen counter or floor and seeing tiny little ants moving around. Since it is slowly starting to warm up, the chances of seeing ants around the house is increasing.

If you are having issues with ants or are afraid they may start to enter your home, then look outside for their nest. Ant nests are often found around the foundation of a house in the soil. If your house is on a concrete slab, the ants might build their nest under the slab. Carpenter ants might make their nests in the wood boards in your house. Once you have located the nests of the ants, you should destroy it.

When dealing with ants inside the house, locate the place where they are getting in. Apply an insecticide at the entry location and then seal the opening off to prevent further invasions. Besides the entry location, you should apply the insecticide in locations where ants like to hide. Those locations would include: foundation walls, doorways, windowsills, cabinets, and beneath your refrigerator.

If your house is on a concrete slab, you will also want to seal any cracks in the slab and potentially treat any heating ducts and utility openings as those are sources for ants to enter your house.

When selecting an insecticide, look for one labeled for “crawling insects” or “roach and ant” control. Some of the active ingredients to look for include bifenthrin and beta-cyfluthrin. Please realize that all insecticides are hazardous. You can find insecticides in many forms including sprays and baits. Never apply insecticides on or near food or on any surface where food would come in direct contact with it. As with any pesticide, you must read and follow all label instructions.

Even though ants are a pesky problem, they are beneficial. Their tunnels help aerate the soil which is important for a nice healthy lawn. If you would like more information about ants, look at Purdue Extension publication, E-22-W Ants. You can obtain your own copy by going to or by contacting the local Purdue Extension Office.

Visit or you can contact the local Purdue Extension Office by calling 653-8411 for more information regarding this week’s column topic or to RSVP for upcoming events. It is always best to call first to assure items are ready when you arrive and to RSVP for programs. While many publications are free, some do have a fee.

Upcoming Events

April 10 -- Indiana Extension Homemakers Spring Dessert, 7 p.m.

April 20 – Food Pantry Coalition meeting, 10 a.m., Extension Office.

April 25 – Herb Gardening webinar, noon, RSVP at

April 25 – 4-H Camp Counselor training, 5 p.m., Fairgrounds.

April 26 – Gardener Gathering: Landscaping Basics, 6:30 p.m, Extension Office. Register at

May 1 – 4-H Camp Counselor training, 5 p.m., Fairgrounds.

May 3 -- Gardener Gathering: Rain Gardens, 6:30 p.m., Extension Office. Register at

May 12 – Sheep and Goat retinal scanning, Fairgrounds.

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