The Richmond Register

April 2, 2013

Ants are nuisance, even to an insect lover

By Amanda Sears
Extension Agent

MADISON COUNTY — I usually do not mind insects, but I do not like ants.

Although ants look the same to most of us, there are several different kinds that invade our homes.  

Probably the most common is the odorous house ant. This ant emits a rotten coconut smell or pine scent when crushed. The smell reminds me of the smell of insect sprays.

The problem most people make when trying to control ants is to spray the ones that they see.  

Actually, these foraging ants make up only a small percentage of the brood. Somewhere, there are thousands more, including a queen who is laying more eggs.

The odorous house ant can be difficult to control because there may be several nests in and around the home. Colonies of these ants also can splinter to form new groups. Nests can be outdoors or indoors.

Ants can be difficult to control.

Make sure you do not have any food sitting out in the home. Also, ants can be attracted to moisture such as water leaks or pet food dishes. Clean your counters often to remove any food residue.

Using baits is the best chemical control because the ants will take the insecticide back to the nest where the queen will eat it.

Try to use syrupy bait, such as Combat Ant Killing Gel or Terro Ant Killer II.

If you are using bait, do not wipe the trail that the ants are using. You want them to get the bait and then take it back to their nest.

If you can see where ants may be coming into your home, caulk this area closed. Also, trim back shrubs and limbs that may be touching the building.



Scale certification

A scale certification is set for Monday, April 15, from 4:30 p.m. to 7 pm at the Madison County Extension Office at 230 Duncannon Lane, Richmond.

Representatives from the state Agriculture Department will be testing and certifying scales for sales and market. Scales must be certified to legally use them to weigh produce for sale.

Madison County Farmers’ Market

There will be an organizational meeting of the Madison County Farmers’ Market on Monday, April 15, from 6 to 7:30 p.m., at the Madison County Extension Office, 230 Duncannon Lane, Richmond.

Educational programs of the Cooperative Extension Service serve all people regardless of race, color, age, sex, religion, disability or national origin.