Organic Ant PEST Control
If you have ever turned to a large commercial pest control company to deal with a stubborn ant infestation, you’ve probably found that not only has your ant problem not been cleared up; it’s actually gotten worse! You might even have noticed a significant loss in your garden’s insect population.
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Organic Ant PEST Control
The reality is that 90% of all bugs are actually beneficial to the health of your garden, which is why organic ant control is the best route to take. Unfortunately, most ant pest control and eradication products—particularly sprays and insecticides—are non-selective, meaning they kill insects you actually want to keep around, like honey bees. Unlike most companies which are happy to exterminate bugs indiscriminately using non-selective insecticides, Ant & Garden Pest Control in Beaverton, Oregon will only target the bad guys using highly effective organic bio insecticides that are safe for use around pets and children.
What are Bio Insecticides?
Bio insecticides are a class of highly specialized, organically based insecticides designed to provide non-toxic targeted treatment for the eradication of pest bugs. Extremely effective in terms of ant extermination, these products are also safe for the environment, which isn’t true of most commercial ant pest control products. Some examples of bio insecticides used in organic pest control treatments include:
- Azadirachtin: A biodegradable antifeedant and growth disruptor made from neem seeds.
- Abamectin: A naturally occurring bacterial byproduct found in soil that reacts with chlorine channels inside an ant’s stomach, crystallizing their guts and causing a slow death. Harmless to humans and pets, Abamectin is approved for agricultural use as long as it is applied 24 hours pre-harvest. It is the only product available that allows for a pre-harvest interval.
- Essential oils: Organically derived essential oils like garlic oil and rosemary oil are highly effective in treating ant infestations and have no harmful effects on the environment.
There are quite a few commercially produced bio insecticides on the market today such as PFR-97, Botaniguard-22, Grandevo and Serenade fungicide. Figuring out the right combination of products and the proper treatment plan for your property is crucial and it’s just the first step in my all-inclusive organic ant pest control program to permanently eradicate ants from your entire property.
Custom Ant Bait Stations for Organic Ant PEST Control
Most pest control companies use pre-made bait stations, primarily because it saves time and they’re easier to work with. Training new employees to make bait stations also takes time and effort and a lot of the larger companies simply don’t have that time. The problem with this approach is that it is rarely effective, which is why you keep seeing ants even if you’ve treated your property with these commercially made bait stations.
Unlike these companies, Ant & Garden Pest Control in Beaverton, Oregon makes custom ant bait stations using organic materials that work to eradicate ant colonies at the source and decimate their nests. I start with empty bait plates, then add a polymer that absorbs moisture from the air. Next, I add a sugar product mixed with nicotine, along with a strong fishy smelling product that contains a bacterial insecticide. The fishy odor attracts ants instantly although it has no noticeable odor to humans.
Why are Custom Bait Stations More Effective?
Unlike standard ant bait stations, custom-made versions prepared exclusively by Ant & Garden Pest Control contain the fats, carbs and proteins that ants crave. The polymer layer in my bait station also absorbs moisture, so these traps are like a smorgasbord for ants. My bait stations are so much more effective than anything a licensed professional can buy because they give ants all the different food choices they love plus water. Regardless of the variety of ants you are dealing with, these bait stations will draw them in.
Currently, the best bait stations you can buy pre-made are called dual choice stations and they are made using fat and protein as the bait. However, most ants actually want carbs (simple sugars) and water to maintain the energy needs of their colony, especially during the summer. That’s why most pest control companies that use pre-made bait stations rarely get rid of ants. Carpenter ants, for instance, are a highly efficient form of scavenger ants that want protein all year round, while sugar ants and house ants want sugar throughout the year. The only exception is in springtime when sugar ants gorge on protein to provide for the high protein requirements of the queen who lays her eggs during this time.
There are seven types of ants commonly found in Oregon, all of which have different nutritional requirements. Custom-made ant bait stations by Ant & Garden Pest Control cover all the bases as they contain protein, sugars, water and fat. So no matter what type of ant you’re dealing with, these bait stations will draw them in like magnets.
Baiting –Does It Really Work?
Baiting is the most effective way to eradicate ant colonies, but only if you use the right type of bait station. The goal here is to use an organic ant pest control approach that will not kill the ants that come to your bait station—instead, you want to use these ants to transport the bait to the nest, where it will poison the queen and her drones.
In a typical ant colony, female drones (also known as seeker ants) are responsible for bringing all the food and water back to the colony, but they only make up around 15% of all the ants in the colony. This means that the vast majority of the colony, approximately 85%, are safely tucked away in their nest and you never actually see them. That’s why killing the ants you do see doesn’t actually help. The queen will just lay more eggs to replace her lost drones and your ant problem will just get worse.
Bait stations exclusively prepared by Ant & Garden Pest Control are designed to use the seeker ants to eradicate the rest of the nest. No more killing ants! I know it’s tempting to kill the drones you see, but it’s better to just let them go about their job. Seeker ants have two stomachs – one for digestion and one for trophallaxis, the process by which ants pass on regurgitated liquids to other ants and larvae. The seeker ants will return to the nest after they have gathered food from my bait stations and regurgitate my bait back to the larvae. The by-product of this material is what the queen and all the other ants eat. All my bait makes it back to the nest, which is why my bait stations are so effective.
Why Don’t Commercial Bait Products Work?
Commercial bait products like Terro, a liquid ant bait, don’t work because they end up actually killing the seeker ants that you need to transmit the bait to the nest. The concentration of boric acid in products like this is way too high and it kills the drones on the spot. You might think that you’ve won and you tell all your friends how great Terro is because you see all the dead ants in and around bait stations. Actually, the reality is that all you’ve done is make your problem worse.
When no food or water comes back to the nest, the queen is capable of reproducing thousands of ants to replace her lost drones, based on the needs of her colony. The sudden lack of food also causes colony stress, so the queen will move her nest into another part of your home, or in the worst cases, the colony will split into several colonies. Keep in mind that queens do not produce reproductive ants until there are at least 10,000 ants in her colony. Many varieties of ants also have more than one queen. So now, instead of having just one nest to deal with, you have multiple massive colonies infesting your home, each containing well over 10,000 ants.
(Insider tip – If you mix Terro with honey at a 50/50 ratio, you actually end up with a good product that’s great for bait stations – our secret!)
Why are Standard Ant Sprays Ineffective?
You might have tried treating your ant problem with a standard ant spray that you can buy at the store, but all of these sprays are actually repellents and they only make your problem far worse! I don’t even like servicing houses if any store bought spray is used inside the residence unless the homeowner scrubs up everything they’ve sprayed. Here’s why.
Ants have highly sensitive antennas and can sense repellents. A repellent is a product with a quick kill result – if you spray ants with a repellent product like Raid the ants you spray will die, but now all the female drones out there foraging will not use those pheromone trails where you sprayed to return home. They can sense the repellent product is there and that it will kill them! So instead, they will make new nests through a process called budding, and now you have several nests inside your home instead of one.
Worse still, if these store-bought products are heavily sprayed around your home, baiting becomes near impossible because the ants will try to avoid the repellents. So now, they will wander throughout your entire home and now you have ants everywhere instead of in isolated places. The other problem with these sprays is that the label instructions state that you should spray the product outside, around the foundation of your home. But if you have ants inside your home and spray outside, then all the ants that were in your walls that were going outside to forage are now forced to do all of their foraging inside your home. You will wonder why you just sprayed and now have more ants than you have ever seen in your home before! However, that isn’t the case with an organic ant pest control treatment by Ant & Garden Pest Control in Beaverton, Oregon.
The number one mistake most companies make is that they use amateurs to treat your home. Unfortunately, they are often not properly trained or licensed, so they do not really understand the ins and outs of pest control and they don’t know how to properly communicate with the homeowner. They also use a one size fits all approach to ant pest control. It’s not really their fault – they have a limited time at your home and they have to treat every house the same or they will get reprimanded for not using the product they were taught to use on follow-up treatment.
The problem with this approach is that these companies do not have staff on hand who are qualified and licensed to buy and use non-repellents. Only licensed professionals such as Ryan at Ant & Garden Solutions in Beaverton, Oregon can use non-repellents. A non-repellent is a slow acting product that ants cannot sense, so they follow their trails over the product, getting it all over their exoskeletons. I spray all baseboards and the home’s foundation with non-repellents on initial treatment.
These non-repellents work so well because they have a transfer effect. For every ant that comes into contact with a non-repellent, fifty more ants die at the nest site because the seeker ants take the product back with them to the nest, where the ants groom each other off. This transference of the non-repellent to the ants at the nest site ends up decimating the entire colony. It does take about a week for non-repellents to kill an ant and they are used in a diluted form so they are not actually toxic to pets or kids.
How Can Non-Repellents Work in Organic Ant Control?
There are all sorts of non-repellents available, but my favorite kind is nicotine-based. I never spray countertops or people’s stuff out of respect. With my organic ant pest control foundation spray, you can eradicate the main colonies outside your home as well as the satellite colonies inside your walls. Ants love to live in homes and the ants inside your home stay active year-round. They only hibernate during cold weather if they live outside.
I make it a point to never spray non-repellents in the areas where I bait. The idea is to not kill ants going for your bait because bait is by far the best way to eradicate colonies. However, if you can spray a nest directly with a non-repellent, you will kill the entire colony every time. To locate a nest, leave some bait out and let the ants find it. After about a minute of them foraging, blow on the feeding ants. They will scatter and take their pheromone trail back home to share with their friends.
With carpenter ants, you should use insects as bait. It can be time consuming because carpenter ants can travel up to 300 yards from their nest to forage for food, although they usually tend to travel less than 50 yards away. Watch where they go and when you locate the nest, just spray, check and mate! I also like to bait outside of the foundation on initial treatment with a product that’s 95% corn syrup and corn solids and 5% boric acid.
I provide all my clients at Ant & Garden Pest Control in Beaverton, Oregon with a one month follow-up check after the initial flushing treatment. I spray repellents on the foundation so that any ants nesting outside do not even consider entering your home. It’s crucial to make sure that the homeowner has not seen any ants in the last couple of weeks before this step!
As an added benefit, this kills all of the spiders on the outside of your home before they have time to build webs. Spiders have 16 to 32 eyes and hunt by motion. Spiders can’t detect repellents, so there will be no more walking into webs! Bees and ants are in the same family, Hymenoptera, so the same treatment works on them as well. By spraying the eaves of your home, I can deter paper wasps and other types of bees from making nests on your eaves.
During this difficult time of the pandemic that we’re all living through, it’s more important than ever to protect the health and safety of my clients at Ant & Garden Pest Control while still giving them the best organic ant pest control service possible. To keep my clients safe, I treat just the outside of the home myself and provide clients with custom bait stations to place around the inside of their home in areas where they have noticed ants. I have a 100% eradication rate with this method and it’s a safe and effective option for homeowners who want to instigate pest control measures, but keep themselves safe at the same time.
Ant & Garden Pest Control Beaverton is the most trusted and reliable pest control company in Oregon, and for good reason! I care about helping my clients as though they’re members of my own family. Whether you’re in need of urgent treatment for an existing ant pest problem or are looking for the best prevention methods for your home or business, I am committed to bringing you only the best ant and pest control Beaverton for your complete peace of mind.
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