Warm Weather Brings People Outdoors And Ants Indoors

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

As much a part of spring and summer as picnics and barbeques, ants begin to move indoors in search of food as the weather warms. According to a survey by the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) more than half of consumers name ants as their top pest concern. With more than 700 species and huge colonies, it's no wonder that an ant infestation is of the utmost concern in the warmer months.

"Just as we're ready to enjoy the outdoors and warm weather, ants are starting to invade our yards and homes, particularly our kitchens, which can threaten more than just our plans for a summer cookout," says Missy Henriksen, vice president of public affairs for NPMA. "It's so important to take preventative measures, because ants aren't just a nuisance, they can contaminate food, damage property and some even bite if they feel threatened."

Ants enter homes primarily in search of food, typically looking for sweets or substances containing protein, and eliminating these sources can help keep them at bay. Although ants have replaced cockroaches as one of the most difficult structural pests to control, preventative measures play a major role in avoiding infestations. NPMA offers the following tips to prevent and handle infestations:

  • Wipe up crumbs and spills immediately
  • Store garbage in sealed containers and remove from the home frequently
  • Keep food packages closed or sealed and store products in tightly lidded containers
  • Repair holes or gaps in window and door screens
  • Seal cracks and holes on the outside of the home including entry points for utilities and pipes
  • Keep tree branches and shrubbery well trimmed and away from the house
  • Replace weather-stripping and repair loose mortar around basement foundation and windows
  • If you suspect an ant or any pest infestation in your home, contact a licensed pest professional to inspect, identify and treat the problem

For more information or to find a pest professional visit: www.pestworld.org.

The NPMA, a non-profit organization with more than 7,000 members, was established in 1933 to support the pest management industry's commitment to the protection of public health, food and property.

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