How to Get Rid of Ghost Ants around Your Home Effectively
So you are thinking of trying some tricks on how to get rid of ghost ants. Luckily, you are not lonely in this battle.
It is no secret that ants can be very useful for their environments. These insects help in the practice of decomposition by feeding on dead animals and organic waste.
However, when they start to invade your home, the benefits are invalid as they may become a nuisance for your family and pets.
A Quick Introduction
Before knowing how to get rid of ghost ants or scientifically known as Tapinoma melanocephalum, you better understand more about this type of insect first.
Generally, these animals are small in size with an average length of 1.3 to 1.5 millimeters. They comprise related biology to Pharaoh Species.
They get their names because of the pale to the almost transparent color of their antennae, legs, and abdomen. The only dark part of the body is on the heads and thoraxes.
You can easily notice the presence of ghost ants since they can be anywhere around firewood, crevices, logs, or food sources in your backyard and house.
Their ability to relocate anywhere also makes these insects known as Tramp ants.
Ghost ants look like odorous house species and expel a rotten coconut-like smell when crushed. Thanks to these characteristics, you will recognize the pests without a doubt.
Once you have identified the ant species, it will be easier to perform any trick on how to get rid of ghost ants.
Since ghost ants need a high hydration level, you should observe their presence in the bathroom or kitchen sinks as the pests look for moisture.
Both indoors and outdoors, these ants will build their shelter close to warm and moist areas.
When nesting indoors, you may find them in spaces between wall voids and kitchen cabinets, under carpets, or behind cabinets.
Ghost ants in potted plants are pretty common as well. Whether you put the pots indoors or outdoors, they may use the bases as their nest.
You can also find these ants under switchboards, in electric outlets, or behind baseboards.
For outdoor colonies, they tend to create nests in the ground, firewood, holes, inside crevices, in sidewalks, logs, beneath tufts of grass, on leaves, piles, and under stones.
Ghost ants’ colonies and queen
Knowing how to get rid of ghost ants will not be complete without understanding their habit of creating colonies.
Ghost ants are moderate to large colonies that have several queens. They can also make their settlement bigger by creating sub-colonies.
Their colonies include fertile female queens and males with numerous workers to maintain the colony as well as some pupae and larvae (baby ghost ants).
Following the establishment of a colony, the queens will create new ones through the budding process.
This process will not be a part of the primary colony, so it can help the ghost ants to spread and develop quicker.
Things that attract ghost ants
Understanding what could attract these insects is something important to know before practicing any trick on how to get rid of ghost ants.
Moisture, shelter, and food sources are the main reasons ghost ants come to your house. They prefer sweet foodstuff including candy, sugar, jams, cakes, cereals, syrup, and juices.
In nature, ghost ants feed on the honeydew that mealybugs, aphids, and other plant-eating insects make.
Aside from sweet foods, these ants also consume something rich in grease or protein. In nature, it may refer to dead animals and insects, as well as organic waste.
When it comes to your home, oils, food crumbs, and greasy meats are among the potential attractions.
Since ghost ants eat dead animals, insects, and greasy or sugary food, they may carry bacterial and viral diseases to your home.
The bigger the infestation of these insects, the quicker you need to know how to get rid of ghost ants. Thus, they will not cause further havoc or nuisance.
Ghost ants may also spoil your food products with dangerous bacteria from a dead organism or trash bin that can result in a possible health threat to you and your family.
They may not sting and hardly ever nibble. There is no evident reaction related to their bite as well. However, the infestations of ghost ants can cause a higher risk than a biting issue.
Eliminate Ghost Ants in Your Home
Finding and eradicating ghost ant colonies is fairly hard since there can be several different nests established around your home.
The best way to avoid these ants is by making sure that your home is in hygienic conditions and not favorable for their nesting.
However, if you already notice ghost ants in your home kitchen or bathroom before practicing any preventive action, taking strict measures is a must before the infestation gets worse.
You need to trace the area of ant infestation first in your home. Once located, you can pick the most suitable method to remove ghost ants depending on your condition.
1. Apply Insecticide Dust
Once locating the ghost ant colonies in your home kitchen, start applying insecticide dust carefully on their nest.
Follow the manual instruction of the product before sprinkling the insecticide dust on the nest. The crawling workers in the solution will carry it into their house, promoting their death.
Nevertheless, insecticide dust may make the ghost ant colonies scatter. Thus, it can be an ineffective method sometimes.
2. Get Rid of Ghost Ants with Borax
Many ant killer products include borax as their active ingredient. This compound is popular to control various species including ghost ants.
Most of the products that contain a borax promise to kill ghost ants effectively both outdoors and indoors.
The trick on how to get rid of ghost ants with this active ingredient is pretty simple as well. Mostly, you just need to put the product’s bait station close to the entry point of the nests.
After that, you just need to wait for several days for the borax to kill the whole ghost ant colonies.
3. Eradicate Ghost Ants with Insecticide Sprays
Insecticide sprays are another great solution to battle ghost ants although they may not be as effective as the next technique.
When using insecticide sprays, you tend to kill the worker ants only and leave the whole colony safe. Remember if the queen is still alive, your main goal to get rid of these insects is likely to fail.
Therefore, if you want to use insecticide sprays as the primary solution on how to get rid of ghost ants, make sure to do it frequently and multiply.
You can easily find ant killer sprays in the market and simply follow the product guidelines for the best outcomes.
When it comes to outdoor uses, you can consider using liquid insecticides as well. Just drench the ghost ant mounds with the solution by following its manual instruction.
4. Getting Rid of Ghost Ants with Baits
Among some of these techniques on how to get rid of ghost ants, the application of baits is the most effective and trustworthy one.
Liquid and gel-based baits make the best choice since ant workers typically like such food products.
Locate the common locations of the ghost ants’ nest first either outdoors or indoors. Once discovered their trails and nesting areas, apply the baits on the entry points of the anthills.
You can find some ghost ant baits in the market. Pick the best product according to the particular place of the insect infestation.
Do not forget to read the instruction manual on the label and check it daily to make the most of the bait. You should substitute the bait if there is bigger colonization of these ants inside or outside your house.
Indoor baiting typically shows its outcome after a short time. However, outdoor one may take some moment because of the manifold unidentified nesting sites.
Moreover, compared to other methods, consider using liquid bait products since they offer the best results.
5. Tricks on Eliminating Ghost Ants Naturally
Having children and pets at home may encourage you to find a natural way on how to get rid of ghost ants. Luckily, there are some possible options to try.
First, mix water and soap in the same parts can be a good choice. You can use the solution as an effective spray to battle ghost ants.
Then, alternatively, try to make mint powder by crushing the dried leaves. Simply place this home remedy where you notice ghost ants. It will work as a natural deterrent.
If you have turmeric powder, it can help to eradicate ghost ants as well. Apply it directly to their nests and wait for the treatment to show its results.
You can also try the following natural tricks to fight these insects.
6. Vinegar to Kill Ghost Ants Naturally
You can take advantage of white vinegar to create a natural ghost ant spray. Mix it with water in a 2-1 ratio for the best result.
Vinegar makes a good remedy on how to get rid of ghost ants since the pests hate its strong smell. Besides, this solution also works against pheromone trails generated by these insects to communicate.
Without these trails, ghost ants will not be able to come back to their nest and eventually leave your home due to the smell of vinegar.
Ghost ants do not like cucumbers as well, particularly the bitter ones. You can take advantage of this hatred to keep these insects away by slicing the fruits thinly and leave them in the affected area.
The sliced cucumbers will deter the ants. Make sure to place the dried slices with the fresh ones if you notice that the ants persist.
If you prefer to kill the ants instead of simply deterring them, consider using brine. You can create it by combining water and salt.
Spray the brine in places where you often see ghost ants. Leave the solution overnight for better outcomes.
In addition to cucumber slices, you can also try other insect repellent plants, such as black pepper and garlic.
8. Natural Ghost Ant Baits
Instead of commercial ant baits, you probably want to try a natural one. In this view, a mixture of jam or sugar and two tablespoons of boric acid can be an alternative.
Add the sweet well as you increase the boric acid. Then, put the mixture close to the entry points of the ghost ants.
For grease-based ant baits, you can mix two tablespoons of boric acid with peanut butter. These natural baits may act slower than the commercial ones, but the results are still good.
9. Elimination in Specific Places
As mentioned in the beginning, ghost ants can invade anywhere around your house. Depending on where you see them, the method to control these insects will be different.
For instance, if you want to know how to get rid of ghost ants in car, the most suitable technique will be using a vacuum cleaner.
You may also consider a fogger, but this method is sometimes unnecessary to remove a ghost ant colony in your car.
To prevent the issue from resurgence, make sure to get rid of all juice boxes, candy wrappers, or other food items from the car. Remember to keep your vehicle clean as well.
If you need to get rid of ghost ants in the bathroom, keep the room dry and clean to avoid the infestation after performing any of the above methods.
10. Effective Tips to Prevent Ghost Ants from Coming Back
Finally, after doing every method on how to get rid of ghost ants, you must expect that its infestation will not come back to your home.
To make it happen, maintain good hygiene in any part of your home. Keep your bathroom and kitchen specifically dry and clean as these rooms are the most favorable areas for ghost ants.
Don’t forget to discard your trash daily. Make sure to tightly seal the garbage to prevent ghost ants from tracing them.
By doing all these simple preventive tips, your knowledge about how to get rid of ghost ants will be more valuable.