Recently, I got a call from a new client in Toms River, NJ that had an odorous house ant issue. Odorous house ants got their clever name from the horrible, rotten coconut odor that is given off when they are crushed. So if you crush some ants and smell something that reminds you of rotten coconuts, cover your nose because you have an odorous ant infestation!
The client mentioned the odorous ants were seen by the front door and a bathroom by the front door — she mentioned that she actually followed the ant's trail to find out where they were hiding (rather ingenious of her). The ants that you see in your home are worker ants and their job is to find food and take it back to feed the queen. When they do find food, they’ll leave a pheromone trail for other workers to follow. Tracking them on their trail is your ticket to finding the colony!
As I inspected the exterior of the front door, I found out that moisture was getting under the wood siding on the stoop. Ants are attracted to damp wood and excess moisture, so spots like a bathroom or any areas of moisture are common areas to find ants. I went ahead and injected an aerosol to flush out the ants. This will not only flush out the ants but also remove the pheromone trail the ants leave behind so other ants do not follow. I then treated the exterior with a dust solution for a longer residual. As soon as the odorous ants come in contact with that solution, it’s lights out! After I was done with the front door, I applied the same treatment to the bathroom door and inspected the rest of the house to find any other areas of odorous ant infestations — luckily there weren’t any. I’ll do a follow inspection with the homeowner in two weeks to make sure her odorous ant problem is gone for good.