In Germany, ants in the apartment or house is a plague that occurs mostly in the summer. It can be prevented or controlled. Find out where the ants come from and what to do here.
There are over 100 different species of ants in Germany. Ants (Formicidae) form highly complex, box-organized states with an efficient division of labor, which are not unlike those of bees. That may be very interesting, but you certainly don’t want to have these sub-tenants in your apartment or house. Fortunately, there are effective ways to get rid of the ants in the apartment or house.
Which food sources are interesting for ants in the apartment or house?
- Open garbage bags or bins
- Leftover food – from bread crumbs to compost bins
- Open animal feed
- Unlocked stored food of all kinds
Another reason ants settle in your house is that they are already nesting outside in cracks and crevices in the building material – and one day they will find a way into the house. This can be created anew at any time by moving the building fabric.
Ants are only too happy to build their nests further in the warm, protected areas of the walls. And when access to the interior rooms is found, foraging in the house is also an option. A nest has already established itself unnoticed in the apartment or house.
What are the causes of ants in the apartment or house?
- Ants enter the apartment in search of food and use a pheromone trail to show other members of the state the way to a source of food
- Nests that are built into the building fabric from the outside merge into the inner living area
Tip on ants in the flower pot: Many people should already know that ants and aphids make a good team. It is therefore possible for ants to be brought into the house via potted plants. Therefore, always check them carefully before setting them up in your premises. A very strong aphid infestation is always a sign that ants could be involved.
How do I get rid of ants in the apartment?
In general, we advise against chemical-synthetic ant control agents, because these can also be harmful to human health and the environment. There are enough alternatives for effective pest control.
Prevention is the best protection
You can take preventive action against ants in the kitchen with these environmentally friendly measures:
- Seals cracks and holes with plaster of paris, putty or adhesive tape.
- Keep food tightly closed, this also applies to food in the refrigerator .
- Eliminates leftover food and puts away dirty dishes immediately.
- Closes the bin properly and empties it regularly. Organic waste in particular attracts ants.
- Seals supplies securely in containers with a rubber seal in the lid.
- You should only set up pet bowls when necessary.
- You should check potted plants that you move from the garden to your apartment for ants beforehand.
- Plant growth on the house makes it easier for ants to enter the house. So removes long branches that touch the house wall or unwanted greening on the house facade .
If you already have an ant plague in the kitchen, below are nine tips that you can try in addition to the measures may help you.
9 tips on how to drive ants out of the kitchen
Instead of going straight to the chemical club, many specialist pest control companies recommend using health-friendly ecological agents. You can also find countless home remedy tricks online that you can try out against ants in the kitchen, but not all of them are equally effective.
1. Determine the ant species
In order for you to be able to fight ants in the long term, it is important to first determine the type of ant. In this way you can determine their lifestyle and eating habits and act accordingly.
There are over 100 different species of ants in Germany. You can find a helpful overview for identifying ant species on the website of Rentokil, which specializes in pest control.
2. Follow the ant route and eliminate food sources
It often helps to find the destination of the ant route in the kitchen. Once you have discovered the source of food, you should remove it immediately and keep it locked. This is especially true for sugary foods and liquids.
Once the food source has been eliminated, the ants will soon turn away and start looking for new food sources.
3. Divert the ant route with natural bait
Since ants love foods that are high in sugar and protein, you can try to lure them away from their original route with a few bait. This works best with small traps made from sugar solution, syrup or honey.
4. If the infestation is low, first close the holes and cracks
If the ants infestation is still within the limits in the kitchen, you can also try to close holes and cracks first and thus prevent them from entering.
5. Strong smells disturb the ants’ sense of direction
Ants are very sensitive to smells and communicate mainly via scents, such as pheromones, which they can use to coordinate and optimize their walking routes. This is how the typical ant trails are created, which then meander through your kitchen.
The pronounced sense of smell is, however, both a blessing and a curse for them, because many smells abhor the small storage or material pests, as they make them disoriented.
Ants find the following scents particularly unpleasant. They can be used to drive ants out of the kitchen:
- Cinnamon powder or sticks
- Bay and juniper leaves
- Lavender flower or oil
- Herbs like thyme, chervil, marjoram
- Centaury and lemon herb
Since the smells can evaporate quickly, you should refresh your laid out track regularly in order to get rid of the ants in the long term.
6. Clean the kitchen floor with vinegar
Vinegar is a popular home remedy in many areas of the household. A vinegar-water mixture is also suitable for cleaning surfaces that have been infected by ants. Ants avoid the strong vinegar smell and the scent trail along the ant route is destroyed. This is how the ants lose their bearings in the kitchen. For long-term success, you should clean the affected areas several times with the vinegar-water mixture.
TIP: Even food moths avoid the strong vinegar smell.
7. Consult a specialist in the event of severe ants infestation
If the ants in the apartment have not only spread out in the kitchen, but have already started building nests in the wall , floor and ceiling area, you should definitely consult an IHK-certified specialist company for pest control and a building expert.
Some species of ants can severely damage masonry and built-in wood and destroy large areas, for example wood ants. This can result in great financial damage if you do not act promptly and professionally.
Not only ants have such destructive power.
8. If the infestation recurs, carry out a weak point analysis
If the ants find their way back into the kitchen again and again, you should definitely have a structural weak point analysis carried out by a specialist.
9. Completely relocate the ant colony
If the ant nest is too close to your house, you can move it in a gentle way.
Can i just use baking soda against ants in apartment kitchen?
How effective the baking soda is depends on the type of ants you want to fight and how regularly you use them.
Opinions also differ when it comes to using baking powder: it works for some, not for others. There can be several reasons for this:
- Only baking powder with sodium hydrogen carbonate, i.e. baking soda, is said to be effective. However, some manufacturers replace the substance with potassium hydrogen carbonate, which does not achieve the same effect.
- Not all ants jump on baking soda. In an experiment, the Federal Environment Agency found out that pharaoh ants , for example, cannot be fought with the home remedy baking powder .
The use of baking powder or baking soda is also controversial. It is often said that the ants suffer a painful death after being eaten and burst. The latter assumption is a myth.