Recently, a senior community in Manchester Township, NJ, one of several adult communities serviced by Cowleys, I was contacted by property management to assist an exceptionally friendly resident who has having an issue with pesky ants in her bathroom. She was concerned that the ants invaded her bathroom because it wasn’t clean, and I assured her that her bathroom was quite clean and that ant infestations can happen for reasons other than food crumbs! For example, ants will often infest homes to escape cold temperatures, flooding of their nests, and to seek out moisture.
She led me to where she had seen ants, and I began my inspection. Foraging ants follow trails that they have established going to and from their nest. I carefully observed the ways in which they were traveling to determine where they were coming from and where they were going. This allows me to determine their points of entry into the home and the inside attractant. Here, the ants were trailing along the vanity top and disappearing into an opening underneath the sink on the bottom side.
With their entry point determined, it was time to resolve the infestation. I applied a light liquid application to those areas where the ants were traveling. Ant behavior is quite predictable. Oftentimes, they stay on a pheromone trail that lets them know it’s safe and putting them in the right direction for food and water. Sometimes, thy will deviate off the path to seek out a food or water source, but they soon return to the path after finding what they are searching for. By treating the ant trail, we use their behavior against them. Ants are a collective that work for the benefit of the entire colony. We want to eliminate the queen and the entire colony, not just a few expendable foraging ants. With this product, the ants do not immediately die when they come into contact with it. Instead, they unknowingly carry it back to the nest where it is distributed throughout the colony through their feeding and grooming. Generally, it takes about two weeks for the colony to be eliminated and for the homeowner to have no more periodic ant sightings.
The resident was very happy and grateful that we could take care of her ant issue and that the infestation wasn’t her fault. Sometimes, residents delay reporting infestations to the property manager because of embarrassment and the misconception that all pest infestations are related to sanitation problems. I can emphatically say that they are not — infestations can happen in the cleanest of homes!