Australia has a lot of ants. A lot of ants. Out of 15,000 known species and subspecies worldwide, Australia has over 1,300 of them..
People generally don’t like ants, and going under the assumption that you’re people it is safe to say that you don’t either, and when they start infesting your house everything starts going downhill. You don’t know where these ants have been, and you definitely don’t want your house covered in the bacteria that they’re tracking around. All you have to do is spill the smallest amount of sugar on the counter and bam!
So what should you do to prevent it? Or what if it is already happening? Tidal waves of ants are already taking over your home, is it even possible to stop it?
The short answer is yes, though it may require a bit of work or some help from the professionals.
You’re probably wondering why you’re seeing all of these ants. What makes them like the area so much? Well, part of the issue is that Australia’s climate is very cozy for ants, Brisbane in particular.
If you aren’t worried about an ant infestation that is happening in your house, you may want to reconsider. Ants can cause a lot of damage, and dirty up the place a bunch. As mentioned before, while they don’t often carry diseases, you don’t know where they’ve been. They could be carrying harmful bacteria into your kitchen from any number of places. Not to mention that certain ants can cause far more harm than just spreading bacteria.
For example, if you have carpenter ants (a common species in Australia), they are fully capable of damaging the wood in which they rest. This can rot out the perfectly good wood in your home.
Other ant species to worry for in Australia are:
- Argentine ants
- Coastal Brown ants
- Ghost ants
- White-Footed House ants
- Common Black House ants
- Funnel ants
And that’s only getting started on the list of over 1,000 different ants that could be infesting your home.
Common Questions About Ants
How long do ants live?
Trying to wait out the lifespan of an ant is generally a bad idea. Worker ants can live from a few weeks up to a couple years depending on the species, and the colonies themselves can survive anywhere up to 30 years.
Why are there ants in my home?
Ants love food, water and shelter. Anywhere they can find these things, they’ll be happy. In your kitchen, your laundry room, your bathroom, all of these are perfect places to set up base.
Will killing the worker ants help?
No, you would need proper ant prevention or ant extermination equipment. Simply killing a few ants isn’t going to accomplish anything, as what you need to do is kill off their queen.
Ant Infestation Signs
There are many signs of ant infestations, and sometimes the signs can change depending on the kind of ant that is infesting your house.
For example, carpenter ant infestations are generally easy for the layman to identify as they make their nest in wood, making it simple to know there’s an infestation judging by the damaged wood in your house.
Other obvious signs of an infestation are nests which look somewhat like a small hill of dirt, often with a hole at the top. Spotting these is quite easy, although it is important to remember that some ants, such as the carpenter ants mentioned above make their homes in wood, walls, or other dark places which will make the nests much more difficult to spot.
Live ants are another tell tale sign of an infestation. It is okay if there are just a few ants roaming around your house in certain areas with food or moisture that they may be attracted to, but if you start to notice them in large numbers, or lines of ants you may have an infestation on your hands.
Lastly, you may want to watch for shed wings of swarmer ants near any place you’d expect them to be coming from. These places include window sills, vents, and baseboards.
Preventing Ant Infestations in Brisbane
A good way to avoid ant infestations is to remove things that would tempt ants, such as sugary or fatty foods. Keep these kinds of foods in airtight containers, or in the fridge. Even your pet’s food bowls may be an attraction to some ants, so it may be wise to create a moat around your pet’s bowl to stop ants from reaching the food.
Ants hate acid, so use things like lemon or vinegar to clean off any surfaces you have found ants on. When an ant walks, it leaves a chemical trail behind so that other ants know where to go if they find food and water. Because of this, it’s very important to use acidic substances to get rid of these trails and stop the ants in their path.
Baits are another good way to get rid of ants and are generally quite cheap in stores.
The only way to truly get rid of an ant infestation is to kill the queen. Unless you get rid of her, she can replace every ant you kill with another one, and no matter what nest you’re dealing with, the queen is always elusive. Unlike the worker ants, she never leaves the nest so unless you can find it you won’t find her.
The worker ants (the ones you see scrounging around your house) are your key to destroying the nest. If you put out ant bait and the workers are enticed by it, they’ll take it back to the colony and feed it to the queen, eventually killing her.
Don’t be discouraged if one trap doesn’t do the trick. Some colonies can have multiple queens, so it may take a bit for the baits to finally kill off the colony.
If All Else Fails
Do the ants just keep coming no matter what you do? Lucky for you, there are professionals who specialize in getting rid of ants, and they will be happy to help you. But don’t just hire anybody to ‘get rid of your ants’. Hire somebody that will get the job done.
Pest Control Southside is a Brisbane-based pest control company whose competent staff will gladly put an end to your ant issue. No matter what species of ant you have, they can make 100% sure that they are gone for good, and not only that. If there are any other pests infesting your house, they can help get rid of them too.
Below is a list of the Brisbane suburbs we cover. Don’t hesitate to give us a call and make an appointment to get rid of those filthy ants.