If you have ants in your house that don’t seem to go away, it may be pharaoh ants. It is extremely difficult to get rid of pharaoh ants.
Mistakenly given their name from the biblical plagues of ancient Egypt, you can find these ants all over the world. If you have these ants, you may feel like you are smited like ancient egypt, but don’t burn the house down or move out. There is hope, this guide will lead you through eliminating one of the hardest ants to control.
What Do Pharaoh Ants Look Like?
Pharaoh ants are very tiny ants and are sometimes mistakenly referred to as sugar ants. They prefer to live indoors in all but the warmest climates. They are always yellow or light-brown in color and are almost transparent.
No dealing with pharaoh ants? Check out our article, How to Get Rid of Ants for more information on controlling several different ant species.
Best Bait for Pharaoh Ants Inside Your Home
The first step in effective control is removing the food source and replacing with an ant killer bait. Next bait away from the food source onto trails and into potential nesting areas.
We recommend using the complete Indoor Ant Kit from DoMyOwn. This complete kit includes sweet and protein baits, granules and gels, and even bait stations to keep children and pets safe. It is, by far, the best bait for pharaoh ants we've come across!
The Indoor Ant Kit contains all the products you need for effective treatment of the ants most commonly found indoors.
- Little black ants
- Carpenter ants
- Odorous house ants
- Pharaoh ants
- And more
How to Bait for Pharaoh Ants Using the Ant Kit
Bait for pharaoh ants until you do not see any further sign. Then, keep baiting. Continue to put out bait throughout your house, especially in hard to reach places, for several more weeks. This will ensure that you eliminate the colony and any that break off.
While baiting for pharaoh ants, be sure not to use any repellents around your home. Repellents might cause the colony to fragment into multiple ones. These colonies can quickly spread throughout your home, making the problem worse. Colonies may seem to have disappeared, but they’re rebuilding in many places.
Once the pharaoh ants are gone, continue using the bait for several weeks.
How to Keep Pharaoh Ants Out of Your Home
Once you have gotten rid of the pharaoh ants, make sure they do not come back. A good perimeter treatment of an ant killer will keep them out for good. May professionals use Termidor SC to form a protective barrier around your home. It's also easy for do-it-yourselfers to use.
Termidor SC (the SC stands for Suspended Concentrate) is an effective and well-known termite killer. However, when used as a barrier around your home, it also keeps out several species of ants, including pharaoh ants.
Its active ingredient is Fipronil (9.1%). The product is safe for use around pets. However, please do not use on pets!
Each 20 oz bottle makes up to 24 gallons of Solution.
To use, mix with water as directed on the label. Then, spray one foot up on your house and one foot away from the house. This product will protect your house for 90 days. Best of all, it will eliminate other common pests like termites, spiders and roaches.
What Are Pharaoh Ants?
Pharaoh ants are notoriously difficult to get rid of. They are often confused with other yellowish to brown ant species. Magnification is often needed to see physical differences from other species.
Two confused species are fire ants and bigheaded ants. Like fire ants, pharaoh ants have a stinger. Habitat type can also be used to tell differences. For example, you can only find fire ants outside the home. When it comes to getting rid of them, however, you can treat them all the same.
In the United States, They Live Indoors
In the United States, pharaoh ants nest indoors, with the only exception being southern Florida. Any heated structure can become a home for a colony of pharaoh ants. The reason they are hard to treat is because they prefer to set up in walls, electrical junction boxes, attics and crawl spaces. Pipes and wiring provide easy highways throughout your entire house.
Pharaoh ants will even nest in clothing and sheets. Any secure areas where there is food and water nearby is a prime location for pharaoh ants.
What Do Pharaoh Ants Eat?
Sweet, oily, and protein foods are all attractants to Pharaoh ants. Once ants have found reliable food sources, they put down chemical trails that lead others to the spot.
Pharaoh ants have a knack to get into anything. Even food that seems secured, may fall victim to these intruders. Compounding the nuisance of these ants in food areas, they can even transmit harmful pathogens. Deadly bacteria like salmonella, staphylococcus and streptococcus can be carried on ant's bodies.
Pharaoh Ant Colonies
Colonies of pharaoh ants can range in size. Populations of hundreds of thousands are common. When disturbed, ant colonies can split and form new colonies. When this occurs, worker ants and a daughter queen will break away and set up shop in a new territory. Even if a new queen isn’t ready, workers can raise one from brood in the old colony. This characteristic is another factor that makes pharaoh ants difficult to control.
Control is difficult because of nesting habits in hard to reach places. Whole house or building treatment is required. This includes treatment in walls, electrical outlets, basements, attics…pretty much anywhere there is a space. When treating for pharaoh ants, don’t forget to treat feeding areas and around the trails to the feeding areas.