Saturday, February 8, 2014

AHHH!! Attack of the ants! and how I deal with them.

I woke up this morning to quite an unpleasant sight.  Ants.  On my counter top.


Not very appetizing.  Not very fun.

Luckily, I have a simple and cheap solution for these little pains.

Mix half Borax and half sugar and put it on a pile around where your ants like to congregate.

You can see the ants starting to eat this mixture up.  

Why does this work?  Why waste your sugar on this instead of using it for yummy cookies?

First, the overwhelming sweet sugar attracts them more than the Borax.  And ants are quite smart creatures.  They take some of the sweet goodness back to their nest, and first one of the worker ants tests it to make sure it is safe before they feed it to the queen.  A dead queen is a dead colony, and that's our goal.  

If we only kill those dang workers, more will come.  But if we kill the queen, the colony will collapse, and chaos will ensue for all that were not poisoned by the borax.  

So anyway, the worker ant tests this possible food source before letting the queen eat it, and they don't die either at all because they ate the sugar, or they die in a few days, as borax isn't fast working on their system.  They see this mixture is safe and they come in droves.  They feed their babies this (I realize I am now sounding evil, but I would rather poison these ants than using a strong enough poison that could ruin my nervous system, my family's nervous system and any pets and potentially seep into the ground water - albeit in limited quantities). 

Back to my evil plan, their whole colony collapses.  It is true that your ant problem will get worse before it gets better, it will be concentrated to the area where you laid your sweet traps, and it is a lasting healthy solution.

I had ants coming in from my front door, and I laid the borax/sugar mixture out to get 'em.  My dog ended up licking some up.  Not what I would recommend, but she is fine.  She didn't even get an upset stomach.   So it is relatively safe in limited quantities for dogs.

Hopefully you don't have ants, but if you do, now you have a simple and cheap way to deal with them.