Argentine Ants

Source(s): Willie Chance

When outdoor temperatures get hotter and conditions get drier, humans aren’t the only ones coming indoors. Argentine ants are marching inside, too.


If you have them, you definitely know it. They travel in trails into kitchens, offices and bathrooms searching for food and water.

These pests are usually Argentine ants which are small, just an eighth of an inch long. Native to South America, they were accidentally introduced into the United States more than 100 years ago in New Orleans coffee shipments.

They are one of the most difficult-to-control ants in the U.S. A single colony can consist of hundreds of thousands of ants.

University of Georgia entomologists say you can reduce your chances of having these ants in your home. To discourage them, rinse all drink cans before placing them into the garbage or recycling bin and by empty garbage containers often.

And, don’t leave any food or drinks out. Argentine ants love sugar and will show up to dine on it, literally by the thousands, overnight.

UGA experts don’t recommend using over-the-counter insect killer. You can use spray products for the ‘revenge factor,’ but you’ll never get rid of them all. You have to hit the nest, where all the queens are.

A bait that can be used indoors is Terro bait. It’s a liquid you can buy at most home-improvement and lawn-and-garden stores. Another effective bait is Combat Ant-Killing Gel. Use the product’s syringe and place small dabs anyplace you see ants.

If you reach a point of desperation, UGA entomologists say call a professional pest control company for help.


Center Publication Number: 266

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