I was sent to a home in Edison, NJ after the homeowner had contacted Cowleys after noticing a significant number of ants crawling around their living room. Upon arrival, the homeowners showed me where they had last seen the invading ants. Ants were trailing along the front patio baseboards in the living room, which also happened to be the interior side of an outside wall. Given the location, I strongly suspected that ant nest was located outside the home and foraging ants accessed the home through gaps and cracks in this wall. With their pheromone scent trail established, there was a busy ant “highway” that led straight into the living room.
Sure enough, once I moved my inspection to the exterior side of this wall, I found the ant trail. The trail started from soil near the home, and then went up the exterior wall right into the living room. I also observed that they ants had found some prime real estate to build their colony. Ants and most other insects thrive in moist environments. Here, the soil right outside the living room was kept constantly moist (despite our dry spells) because a sprinkler head was right there. In addition to this portion of the lawn being watered constantly, this area was not exposed to direct sunlight and kept shaded because an overhang. Without this little area being dried out from the sun, the soil was rich with moisture all the time, perfect conditions for an ant colony.
This thriving colony was getting its food supply outside the home from the rich soil and vegetation and inside the home from all of the crumbs and food debris. Ants do very well around human habitats since we leave them plenty of food and moisture. For ants, our barely noticeable crumbs that we leave on floors and counters is like finding treasure.
To eliminate this ant infestation, I thoroughly treated the interior areas with a crack and crevice treatment and the exterior areas with a perimeter treatment. With these applications, the ants pick up the product as they travel back and forth from the nest, spreading it to other workers and the rest of the colony. These homeowners will soon see a noticeable decline in the number of foraging ants invading their living room as the nest dies out over the next few days.