child on lawn, ant on hand. Header for Ant Control

Ant Control Services

Local Ant Problems

There are over 20,000 species of ants on the planet. Wow – good thing there is only some 100 or so species in British Columbia. Better yet, there are only a few types of ants that cause issues in the Sea-to-Sky corridor and Metro Vancouver area of BC.

Ants primarily reside outdoors and serve as valuable scavengers that aid in maintaining the tidiness of gardens and landscaping. However, some ants can create problems when the otherwise harmless insects invade homes to forage for food.

The likelihood of a home invasion is high in the well-developed Metro Vancouver region, as these ants often prefer to live in a moist, protected spaces with abundant food sources.

Ants live in colonies. Their social structure is highly organized and efficient, with the sole objective of growing their colony. Given a suitable habitat near a food source, say your home or kitchen area, a colony will continue to grow. There is no reason for them to leave unless you make a change.

PRO TIP:
If you are dealing with an established ant colony you should seek out a professional; call Solutions Pest Control.

Should you be concerned?

Most ants commonly found in BC are not aggressive, although some can bite. Ants should be tolerated as much as possible since they cause little damage to the garden. They can even be considered beneficial because they eat other insects like young silverfish and moths.

Certain kinds of ants commonly build nests in or near homes. They become pests when you see unsightly trails of workers throughout your home taking advantage of the various food and moisture sources available. Homeowners with infestations can even report flying ants during mating season. More on the problems caused by ants in the home.

Ant Species That Cause Problems

Species known to invade homes in BC include the:

  • carpenter ant,
  • little black ant,
  • odorous house ant,
  • thief ant, and
  • pharaoh ant.

Pavement ants can become a nuisance in lawns, gardens, and pathways, as well as indoors.

Problems With Ants In The Home

Our local household ants create problems by nesting in residential areas, invading homes in search of food, and even causing structural damage to buildings.

  • Household ants often travel in large groups to collect food from previously identified sources.
  • Gathering food en masse can contaminate indoor areas where people eat or prepare meals.
  • When collecting food from an indoor source like a kitchen or pantry, the foraging insects may transfer dirt and other unsanitary materials to countertops, shelves, and edible items.
  • Carpenter Ants do not eat wood; rather, they chew up wood to make nests for their colony.
  • Pharaoh ants can spread several harmful pathogens, including Salmonella spp., Staphylococcus spp., and Streptococcus spp, producing severe health concerns to you and your family

Identify Your Pest Ants

Although the different types of ants in Metro Vancouver share many of the same general traits regarding overall appearance and behaviour, each species retains unique characteristics affecting the identification and management of the pest insects.

Knowing which species has laid claim to your home is crucial to removing them. Don’t wait; the issue will not go away unless you take action.

Call Solutions Pest Control

Solutions Pest Control is familiar with all the types of ants that live in your neighbourhood, and the problems ants can bring to your home or business. Give us a call today if you notice too many ants in your house. Schedule a Service Call Now!

Ant Infestation

Signs of Infestation

Typical household ants often send individual workers (scouts) from the colony to inspect surrounding areas and locate food sources.

While the presence of a lone ant indoors does not necessarily indicate a nest inside as well, it does signal the existence of a colony in the nearby vicinity.

It also indicates a high probability of hundreds or thousands of ants returning once the scout ant notifies the colony of the food source.

The sight of swarmers, either dead or alive, serves as another sign of a nearby ant infestation. A well-established colony will produce a mating swarm once a year to establish a new nest and grow a new colony.

What Do Ants Eat? – Their Diet

The local household ants are strongly attracted to these types of foods:

  • sugar and sugary foods like honey, soft drinks, and ice cream;
  • honeydew secretions produced by aphids on infested houseplants;
  • greasy foods (like peanut butter or crumbs);
  • protein by feeding on meats and dead insects; and
  • spilled greases and oils.

Where Do Ants Come From? – Ant Reproduction

Ants live in colonies. Their social structure is highly organized and efficient, with the sole objective of growing their colony. You can better understand your ant pest issue by understanding ant behaviour.

Many local ant colonies grow by producing winged males and females called alates/swarmers. At specific times throughout the year, the swarmers leave the colony and mate.

The males die after mating, while the newly established female queens locate a suitable nesting site, shed their wings, and begin to lay eggs.

Ant larva looks like legless, whitish cylinders hatch from the eggs. They develop into pupae under the care of the queen/other worker ants.
The pupae become adult worker ants (all females) after a few weeks and take responsibility for the safety and development of future eggs, which the queen continues to lay.
While most types of household ants use mating swarms to reproduce, certain species rely on a process called budding.

Ants that reproduce by budding, which means the ants simply divide the colony when it becomes too crowded, with one or more queens leading a group of workers (which carry eggs and immobile larvae) to a new nesting site.

Ant Control Treatments

How can I get rid of ants?

Ant Control Strategies

The following is a list of strategies we use to assess what should be done to deal with a specific client issue. Other than the Preventative strategies, described below, not every Ant Pest issue should be treated the same.

Prevention strategies, listed below, can be applied in every household.

Removing access to food and water is the easiest way to avoid pest problems.

Ant colonies send out scouts to search for food. Ants are attracted to many types of food. They enjoy eating sugary and greasy foods (like peanut butter or crumbs) and are also attracted to the “honeydew” produced by aphids on infested houseplants. A successful scout leaves a scented trail for other workers to follow back to the food source.

Steps to take to discourage ants from finding food in your home:

  • Store ant-attractive foods in glass jars with rubber gaskets, or in plastic containers with lids that snap tight.
  • Keep kitchen countertops clean. Sweep or vacuum the floor often, especially around pet dishes.
  • Rinse containers before putting them in the garbage or recycling bins.
  • Empty kitchen garbage containers often.
  • Place composters at a reasonable distance from your house.
  • Place pet food dishes in a shallow dish of water. Most ants can’t swim, so they won’t be able to get at your pet’s food.
  • Repair and seal as many visible cracks in the foundation and exterior walls of your house as possible.
  • Indoors, caulk along baseboards, cracks, and crevices to keep ants from passing through your house. If needed, use duct tape or petroleum jelly to seal cracks temporarily.
  • Ants will not cross sticky barriers. Try placing two-sided tape around the legs of plant stands.
  • Flood ant nests repeatedly with a garden hose to encourage the ants to move farther away from your house.
  • Pour boiling water and detergent down the nest to temporarily reduce the population of a colony.
Diatomaceous earth can be placed in cracks and crevices as a non-chemical means of control. This powder is made up of crushed microscopic marine fossils that scratch the outer “skin” of ants, causing them to dehydrate and die. Diatomaceous earth will remain active as long as it is kept dry. It is non-toxic to humans and pets, but be careful not to inhale the dust when applying this product.

Natural gum resins can be applied around the base of trees and vines.

Many chemical products can be used by consumers to control ants:

Chemical pesticides, sprays, and dusts can be used effectively as barrier and nest treatments. Applying a chemical directly in the nest may eliminate colonies. Anthills show where the colony has built a nest, so look for anthills in your yard or follow the ant trails back to the nest. Nests located indoors in wall voids can be treated with dust pesticides that can be puffed into the area.

Chemical barrier treatments can be applied to baseboards or door and window frames to keep outdoor nesting species from searching for food indoors. Spraying indoors where trails have been noticed may cut off food and water sources for an indoor nest and encourage the colony to split into multiple new colonies. If the treatment seems to increase the number of ants, try using a bait system to control them.

Ants gather food and bring it back to the nest to feed ant colony members. So a bait system must work slowly enough to allow all members of the colony to ingest the poison. A bait system is a highly effective way of getting rid of an ant colony. Baits containing boric acid are generally of low toxicity to other animals.

  • Place bait stations directly in the path of foraging ants, but out of the reach of children and pets. Ant trails are commonly found along baseboards, the carpet edge along walls, or the edges and inside corners of cabinets.
  • Use plenty of bait stations. Two different baits at the same time will give better results.
  • Keep baits available for at least two weeks. Repeated bait applications may be needed.
  • Do not use chemical sprays to kill ants while using a bait system, or the bait system will not work. Reapply the bait if needed.
PRO TIP:
Dealing with an established ant colony is tricky. If you do not locate the main nest and eliminate the queen, you could cause the colony to split into two “Budding” and possibly double your problem.

If you are dealing with an established colony, you should call Solutions Pest Control to eliminate your ant pest problem.

Ant Control Products

If you are a DYI person, you may want to check out the Ant Control products available in our online store.

Home Owners May Require Residential Applicator Certificate

If you are a homeowner and are planning to use pesticides on your property in British Columbia, you may require a Residential Applicator Certificate under the Environmental Protection & Sustainability Ministry. FYI.

Solutions To Your Pest Control Issues

Dealing with ant infestations can be a trying experience. That’s why when you have problems, you need Solutions. Protect your home and your loved ones with professional ant control solutions so that you can enjoy an ant-free home.

Our team is ready to solve your pest issues, call Solutions Pest Control today!
Or Schedule a Service Call Now!

Why Solutions Pest Control?

We are your local pest control expert. Our friendly pest control techs live and work in your neighbourhood. We are very familiar with the local pest issues and are ready to help.

DIY Pest Control

If your pest issue is not too big, you may want to try one of these pest control products.

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Testimonial

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Eve M. - North Vancouver

Guarantee

Solutions Pest Control will solve your specific pest problem. If we can’t, we’ll help you find someone who can. – That’s our guarantee to you.

Solutions Pest Control has been trusted by Metro Vancouver residents since 2009

Ant Control Services

Local Ant Problems

There are over 20,000 species of ants on the planet. Wow – good thing there is only some 100 or so species in British Columbia. Better yet, there are only a few types of ants that cause issues in the Sea-to-Sky corridor and Metro Vancouver area of BC.

Ants primarily reside outdoors and serve as valuable scavengers that aid in maintaining the tidiness of gardens and landscaping. However, some ants can create problems when the otherwise harmless insects invade homes to forage for food.

The likelihood of a home invasion is high in the well-developed Metro Vancouver region, as these ants often prefer to live in a moist, protected spaces with abundant food sources.

Ants live in colonies. Their social structure is highly organized and efficient, with the sole objective of growing their colony. Given a suitable habitat near a food source, say your home or kitchen area, a colony will continue to grow. There is no reason for them to leave unless you make a change.

PRO TIP:
If you are dealing with an established ant colony you should seek out a professional; call Solutions Pest Control.

Should you be concerned?

Most ants commonly found in BC are not aggressive, although some can bite. Ants should be tolerated as much as possible since they cause little damage to the garden. They can even be considered beneficial because they eat other insects like young silverfish and moths.

Certain kinds of ants commonly build nests in or near homes. They become pests when you see unsightly trails of workers throughout your home taking advantage of the various food and moisture sources available. Homeowners with infestations can even report flying ants during mating season. More on the problems caused by ants in the home.

Ant Species That Cause Problems

Species known to invade homes in BC include the:

  • carpenter ant,
  • little black ant,
  • odorous house ant,
  • thief ant, and
  • pharaoh ant.

Pavement ants can become a nuisance in lawns, gardens, and pathways, as well as indoors.

Problems With Ants In The Home

Our local household ants create problems by nesting in residential areas, invading homes in search of food, and even causing structural damage to buildings.

  • Household ants often travel in large groups to collect food from previously identified sources.
  • Gathering food en masse can contaminate indoor areas where people eat or prepare meals.
  • When collecting food from an indoor source like a kitchen or pantry, the foraging insects may transfer dirt and other unsanitary materials to countertops, shelves, and edible items.
  • Carpenter Ants do not eat wood; rather, they chew up wood to make nests for their colony.
  • Pharaoh ants can spread several harmful pathogens, including Salmonella spp., Staphylococcus spp., and Streptococcus spp, producing severe health concerns to you and your family

Identify Your Pest Ants

Although the different types of ants in Metro Vancouver share many of the same general traits regarding overall appearance and behaviour, each species retains unique characteristics affecting the identification and management of the pest insects.

Knowing which species has laid claim to your home is crucial to removing them. Don’t wait; the issue will not go away unless you take action.

Call Solutions Pest Control

Solutions Pest Control is familiar with all the types of ants that live in your neighbourhood, and the problems ants can bring to your home or business. Give us a call today if you notice too many ants in your house. Schedule a Service Call Now!

Ant Infestation

Signs of Infestation

Typical household ants often send individual workers (scouts) from the colony to inspect surrounding areas and locate food sources.

While the presence of a lone ant indoors does not necessarily indicate a nest inside as well, it does signal the existence of a colony in the nearby vicinity.

It also indicates a high probability of hundreds or thousands of ants returning once the scout ant notifies the colony of the food source.

The sight of swarmers, either dead or alive, serves as another sign of a nearby ant infestation. A well-established colony will produce a mating swarm once a year to establish a new nest and grow a new colony.

What Do Ants Eat? – Their Diet

The local household ants are strongly attracted to these types of foods:

  • sugar and sugary foods like honey, soft drinks, and ice cream;
  • honeydew secretions produced by aphids on infested houseplants;
  • greasy foods (like peanut butter or crumbs);
  • protein by feeding on meats and dead insects; and
  • spilled greases and oils.

Where Do Ants Come From? – Ant Reproduction

Ants live in colonies. Their social structure is highly organized and efficient, with the sole objective of growing their colony. You can better understand your ant pest issue by understanding ant behaviour.

Many local ant colonies grow by producing winged males and females called alates/swarmers. At specific times throughout the year, the swarmers leave the colony and mate.

The males die after mating, while the newly established female queens locate a suitable nesting site, shed their wings, and begin to lay eggs.

Ant larva looks like legless, whitish cylinders hatch from the eggs. They develop into pupae under the care of the queen/other worker ants.
The pupae become adult worker ants (all females) after a few weeks and take responsibility for the safety and development of future eggs, which the queen continues to lay.
While most types of household ants use mating swarms to reproduce, certain species rely on a process called budding.

Ants that reproduce by budding, which means the ants simply divide the colony when it becomes too crowded, with one or more queens leading a group of workers (which carry eggs and immobile larvae) to a new nesting site.

Ant Control Treatments

How can I get rid of ants?

Ant Control Strategies

The following is a list of strategies we use to assess what should be done to deal with a specific client issue. Other than the Preventative strategies, described below, not every Ant Pest issue should be treated the same.

Prevention strategies, listed below, can be applied in every household.

Removing access to food and water is the easiest way to avoid pest problems.

Ant colonies send out scouts to search for food. Ants are attracted to many types of food. They enjoy eating sugary and greasy foods (like peanut butter or crumbs) and are also attracted to the “honeydew” produced by aphids on infested houseplants. A successful scout leaves a scented trail for other workers to follow back to the food source.

Steps to take to discourage ants from finding food in your home:

  • Store ant-attractive foods in glass jars with rubber gaskets, or in plastic containers with lids that snap tight.
  • Keep kitchen countertops clean. Sweep or vacuum the floor often, especially around pet dishes.
  • Rinse containers before putting them in the garbage or recycling bins.
  • Empty kitchen garbage containers often.
  • Place composters at a reasonable distance from your house.
  • Place pet food dishes in a shallow dish of water. Most ants can’t swim, so they won’t be able to get at your pet’s food.
  • Repair and seal as many visible cracks in the foundation and exterior walls of your house as possible.
  • Indoors, caulk along baseboards, cracks, and crevices to keep ants from passing through your house. If needed, use duct tape or petroleum jelly to seal cracks temporarily.
  • Ants will not cross sticky barriers. Try placing two-sided tape around the legs of plant stands.
  • Flood ant nests repeatedly with a garden hose to encourage the ants to move farther away from your house.
  • Pour boiling water and detergent down the nest to temporarily reduce the population of a colony.
Diatomaceous earth can be placed in cracks and crevices as a non-chemical means of control. This powder is made up of crushed microscopic marine fossils that scratch the outer “skin” of ants, causing them to dehydrate and die. Diatomaceous earth will remain active as long as it is kept dry. It is non-toxic to humans and pets, but be careful not to inhale the dust when applying this product.

Natural gum resins can be applied around the base of trees and vines.

Many chemical products can be used by consumers to control ants:

Chemical pesticides, sprays, and dusts can be used effectively as barrier and nest treatments. Applying a chemical directly in the nest may eliminate colonies. Anthills show where the colony has built a nest, so look for anthills in your yard or follow the ant trails back to the nest. Nests located indoors in wall voids can be treated with dust pesticides that can be puffed into the area. Learn more about the Ant Spraying Treatment.

Chemical barrier treatments can be applied to baseboards or door and window frames to keep outdoor nesting species from searching for food indoors. Spraying indoors where trails have been noticed may cut off food and water sources for an indoor nest and encourage the colony to split into multiple new colonies. If the treatment seems to increase the number of ants, try using a bait system to control them.

Ants gather food and bring it back to the nest to feed ant colony members. So a bait system must work slowly enough to allow all members of the colony to ingest the poison. A bait system is a highly effective way of getting rid of an ant colony. Baits containing boric acid are generally of low toxicity to other animals.

  • Place bait stations directly in the path of foraging ants, but out of the reach of children and pets. Ant trails are commonly found along baseboards, the carpet edge along walls, or the edges and inside corners of cabinets.
  • Use plenty of bait stations. Two different baits at the same time will give better results.
  • Keep baits available for at least two weeks. Repeated bait applications may be needed.
  • Do not use chemical sprays to kill ants while using a bait system, or the bait system will not work. Reapply the bait if needed.
PRO TIP:
Dealing with an established ant colony is tricky. If you do not locate the main nest and eliminate the queen, you could cause the colony to split into two “Budding” and possibly double your problem.

If you are dealing with an established colony, you should call Solutions Pest Control to eliminate your ant pest problem.

Ant Control Products

If you are a DYI person, you may want to check out the Ant Control products available in our online store.

Home Owners May Require Residential Applicator Certificate

If you are a homeowner and are planning to use pesticides on your property in British Columbia, you may require a Residential Applicator Certificate under the Environmental Protection & Sustainability Ministry. FYI.

Solutions To Your Pest Control Issues

Dealing with ant infestations can be a trying experience. That’s why when you have problems, you need Solutions. Protect your home and your loved ones with professional ant control solutions so that you can enjoy an ant-free home.

Our team is ready to solve your pest issues, call Solutions Pest Control today!
Or Schedule a Service Call Now!

Ant Control Blog

We gathered the following, most recent Ant Control posts from Solutions Pest Control’s – Bug Blog. These are topical posts we’ve written over the years about ant issues in Metro Vancouver and Whistler Sea-to-Sky corridor area. If your neighbours had these issues in the past, our bug blog posts might be relevant to your concerns today.

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Bug Blogs

There is a great deal of information in our Bug Blog posts, perhaps one will address the pest issues you are experiencing today. Please have a look at our Bug Blog page and give us a call if we can answer any questions.