Case Studies

Pests We Treat Case Studies: Moisture in Window Attracts Ants in Belmar, NJ

Wednesday, June 19th, 2019 by Kevin Vernon

Challenge

I recently went out on a service call for a homeowner in Belmar, NJ who was complaining of ants infesting her kitchen. Once I began my inspection I immediately found odorous house ants trailing from the kitchen window to the countertop.  

Odorous house ants are about a 1/8 of an inch in size and are attracted to sweets. They are commonly found trailing through kitchens and are more likely to enter a home after a heavy rainstorm. They are called odorous house ants because when you crush them, they release a rotten coconut odor.

As I continued my inspection to the exterior of the property I noticed that the kitchen window had a gap in the framework that the odorous house ants were using to gain access into the home. I also discovered a massive amount of ants trailing throughout the mulch that was surrounding the property. Mulch is a great way to give your property a clean, tidy appearance, but also creates the perfect living conditions for pests. Mulch holds moisture, protects insects from the sun, and even serves as a food source for pests. 

Solution

For interior treatment, I treated the cracks, crevices, and baseboards in the kitchen and the rear bathroom with an ant gel bait. Ant gel baits are made up of food that attract the ants. The workers will carry the bait back to the nest and feed it to the other colony members. Within a short amount of time the entire colony, including the breeding queen, is eliminated.

Next, I applied a liquid non-repellant application along the entire exterior of the home. Similar to the gel bait, the odorous house ants will come in contact with the application and carry it back to their colony where they will groom one another. The application spreads throughout the colony like a virus and eliminates the ants. As a temporary solution, since the homeowner was going to replace the exterior kitchen window anyway, I sealed the gap to prevent any ants from entering the home. I scheduled a follow-up inspection with the homeowner to make sure that the odorous house ants are no longer stinking up her kitchen.