In the United States, we have 24 unique species of carpenter ants. While each species is somewhat different from the others, they all share traits that cause them to invade Worcester properties. We're going to look at these traits and discuss some ways you might be able to keep carpenter ants out without the use of pest control products.
A Carpenter Ant Gonna Do What A Carpenter Ant Gonna Do
Wood. When carpenter ants get into your yard, they'll gravitate to locations that have sources of rotting wood. These ants tunnel in rotting wood and establish nests inside. A pile of firewood near your property is highly attractive. You can also expect them to get into a stump, log, and the rotting wood of an old fence, deck, or shed. The list of wooden objects these ants have been found infesting is a long one. It is too extensive to list here. All you need to know is that old, rotting wood is a preference.
Moisture. Carpenter ants need moisture to survive. Moisture droplets are more than enough water to satisfy the thirst of an ant. But their attraction to moisture goes beyond the need to drink. They have a preference for damp habitats. It is the ideal environment for locating food sources.
Debris. When debris, such as leaves, grass clippings, cardboard, paper, bagged leaves, and other objects sit on the ground, they provide a potentially damp hiding place underneath for carpenter ants to explore.
Food. There are many things carpenter ants eat. Far too many for you to make the exterior of your property a food-free zone. They can feed on sweets and meats. One sweet food source they love to eat is the honeydew produced by aphids. The more aphids you have in your landscape vegetation, the more interesting your property will be to carpenter ants. One protein-rich food source carpenter ants eat is dead insects. If you have lots of insects around your property, you'll attract unwanted attention from carpenter ants. They'll also eat food you might not readily consider to be ant food, such as a bag full of acorns you've collected from underneath the trees in your yard.
Openings. Carpenter ant workers are always exploring. They have a preference for exploring wood that has been damaged by water. You should not be surprised to find carpenter ants in your Worcester property if you have issues with wood rot.
Carpenter Ant Prevention Tips
Now that you know why carpenter ants are drawn to your property, and why they get inside, here are a few tips to help you counteract ant pressures.
Wood. Remove stumps, logs, and address trees that have heart rot. Move stacked wood away from your exterior and elevate the stacks. Consider replacing old wooden fencing with vinyl fencing. Consider replacing wooden flower bed borders with rock or some other material that carpenter ants will not tunnel into.
Moisture. Clean your gutters and make any necessary repairs to your gutter system. Remove weeds and thin out your landscape vegetation to let the air flow through. Fix leaks in pipes and outdoor hoses and sprinklers.
Debris. Rake leaves up and blow leaves out of your landscaping. Remove sticks, grass clippings, and any other organic debris. Move stored objects away from your exterior. Refrain from putting bagged leaves around your property as insulation.
Food. Address aphid issues by washing the aphids off your leaves with water, and by promoting good plant health, which resists aphid activity. Reduce insects around your property by reducing exterior lights at night or by investing in year-round pest control treatments.
Openings. Inspect the exterior of all structures and seal any gaps, cracks, and holes you find. Pay particular attention foundation penetrations, such as around pipes and wire conduits. Be sure to also consider pathways ants take to get inside. Trim bushes and other vegetation away from your exterior walls to make it more difficult for ants to get up and access gaps around your first story windows. If you have rotting wood on your property, replace the damaged areas or use a caulking gun to fill in these trouble spots.
Big Blue Gonna Do What Big Blue Gonna Do
If you're having trouble with carpenter ants in Worcester, you can count on the team at Big Blue Bug Solutions. We'll do what we're known for doing. We'll guide you in selecting the right pest control for your specific needs and budget, and we'll give you professional service every time. Contact us today and tell us about your ant problem.