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The Insufferable Ant Wars of Summer 2012

By Cody |

It has been a long, long summer. I’m usually itching for the fall to get here for 3 main reasons: football, the leaves, and cooler weather. This year, however, I oh-so-badly want the fall to come simply so I can win this damn war I’ve been fighting over the past 5 months.

We moved into this house almost 3 years ago. Four months afterward, we spotted our first ant crawling across a countertop. It just happened to be the first  of many ants. And it appeared when guests were visiting. Those guests have never been back and we haven’t heard from them since.

Hopefully, it really was the ants that scared them away and not my wife’s personality. You can all stop laughing now. I know, I know. It would have been far more likely that my personality would be the one to scare them away.

Over that first summer, the ants stuck around for a few weeks. I sprayed some of that bug killing barrier stuff around the house and voilà the ants were gone.

The next summer the ants were a bit more aggressive. They started coming into the house earlier than they had the year before. I sprayed the bug barrier around the house again thinking that would be the easiest and quickest solution  No luck though.

And while I’m mentioning those bug barrier bottles… look. Any reps of these products who happen to be reading what I’m writing, I buy that product because I’m deathly scared of spiders. When I spray around the outside of the house in order to create a penetration proof barrier between me and the spiders, damn it, I expect it to work. Why hasn’t it worked? We’ve had all kinds of spiders running across our floors and I get creeped out every time, which leads to my wife openly mocking me on Twitter. I shouldn’t have to rescue two cats from the Humane Society in order to keep my house spider-free. (By the way for those of you who are struggling with the spiders, my cats eat all spiders that dare enter our house and we’ve had no problems with spiders since.)

I think you can all see where this is going. The bug barrier crap didn’t work. The ants remained throughout the summer.We constantly had about 3 or 4 ants crawling on our counters at any given moment. It didn’t matter what kind of bate trap I set out, none of them worked. I killed each individual ant with a soap spray and we survived the summer.

This year has been completely different. I’m pretty sure last year’s ants were just scouting and coming up with a game plan so they could go to war with my family and WIN  Sheesh, boy did they almost win.

We have literally had thousands of ants in our house this year. Ants crawling along the floors. Ants crawling up the walls in little trails. Ants crawling along the floorboards. Ants all over the counters. Ants.  Ants. ANTS.

It got to the point to where Casey and I both started having ant nightmares. I tried every solution I could find on the internet to get rid of the ants but nothing worked. I was ready to give up and waive the white flag and just pray that fall got here a little earlier this year. Then I stumbled across a liquid bait trap from TERRO.

This isn’t a sponsored post. I don’t know if TERRO works everywhere, but what I do know is that Raid and whatever other brand we tried did nothing to solve our ant problem. Before waiving the white flag I decided to give those little TERRO liquid bait traps a try.

I put out two liquid bait traps one night despite Casey’s skepticism. By morning, we had a trail of thousands of ants heading in and out of those liquid bait traps. By midday the next day the ants had pretty much drained one of the traps of all its liquid. Then by night the trail had mostly disappeared. Probably only 10 to 20 ants remained for the next day, and the day after that only 2 or 3.

As I knock on wood, I think that I can now pronounce myself the victor of this war on ants. I haven’t seen an ant in this house for 2 whole days. And you probably have no idea what kind of a morale boost that little stat is to me. We won the war . . . at least until next year.

What have you done to get rid of ant problems? I seriously want to know. I can’t go through another summer of ant problems. My fragile psyche can’t take it.

Photo Credit: Flickr

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About Cody

theycallmecody

Cody

Cody is a father, husband, practicing attorney, and loyal football fan who is outnumbered by girls in every area of his life. He's also been known to drink maple syrup straight out of the bottle. Read bio and latest posts → Read Cody's latest posts →

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10 thoughts on “The Insufferable Ant Wars of Summer 2012

  1. Stella says:

    Cayenne pepper along their entrance places and wiping down surfaces with vinegar.. Had the same Problem you did and it worked within a day or two

    1. theycallmecody says:

      @Stella–I’ve heard about the Cayenne pepper solution, but I couldn’t get the stuff back where the ants were entering the house. As far as I could tell, the ants were entering from behind the dishwasher and I’m not nearly handy enough to know how to take the dishwasher out to check. I didn’t hear about the vinegar solution until just before I tried the Terro stuff. I had been scrubbing the counters with citrus soap before that, but it didn’t stop them from coming into the house.

  2. Anne says:

    You guys are better than me. I moved because of spiders once. They were huge and I couldn’t get rid of them. I left as soon as I could. I just kept picturing them tryIng to crawl up my nose while I was asleep.

    1. theycallmecody says:

      @Anne–I was starting to wonder if we needed to move back to Utah where spiders are normal sized. At least that was before I learned that Salt Lake’s mountains have a pretty healthy community of tarantulas. I lived there most of my life and had no idea there were tarantulas in those woods. Anyway, spiders give me nightmares, but these cats really have solved our spider problem. I haven’t seen a single spider in this house this summer–at least not one that isn’t half way eaten already by Percy.

  3. AmandaVW says:

    We had the same problem this year (we live in Indiana also). We don’t usually have ants in our house. But this year, oh my goodness! We tried lots of things too. But the only thing that worked…Terro traps! I was skeptical at first also, but after the first night, we haven’t had any trouble. And that was way back in May! Woo hoo! I also bought the outside traps. We put a couple of those out also. I didn’t think they would do the trick, but am VERY thankful that they did!

    1. theycallmecody says:

      @Amanda–It seems like it was a huge problem for most people in Indiana. I’m going to keep a supply of TERRO traps in my house each year. I can’t handle another year of the ants. Sorry that it took so long for your comment to get approved. There’s apparently a glitch in whatever system is used and some comments are mistakenly being sent to spam.

  4. ClassyFabSarah says:

    We moved into a house that had been vacated for almost 2 years… but humans. In the absence of humans, ants took refuge here. It’s been 2 years of on-and-off terro battles.. but it’s the ONLY thing that works. I buy bottles and cartons of the bait traps at a time… you never know where they’re gonna pop up – but Terro works. It’s the only thing.

    I’ve found a few “nest” like swarms of them around the foundation of our house… I Terro’d nearby (with LOTS of juice) and then doused the whole thing with vinegar a week later… that helped a lot too.

    1. theycallmecody says:

      @ClassyFabSarah–Our house was unoccupied for a while too. We had it bug bombed before we even closed on the house due to a significant wasp and carpenter ant problem. I’m gonna follow your advice and have bottles and cartons of the TERRO stuff. Where did you get all of your TERRO product? I searched at the Home Depot and it only had the ready to use liquid bate traps.

  5. whithonea says:

    I’ve been battling ants all summer as well. I’ve tried everything (but not the brand you suggested), and they disappear for a few days, lull me into a false sense of comfort, and then reappear in a different room. Fall can’t come fast enough. Plus, pumpkin spice!

    1. theycallmecody says:

      @Whit–Don’t get me started on the pumpkin spice. Seems like this ant thing has been a countrywide epidemic. I’d suggest trying that TERRO stuff. It has now been about a week since I’ve seen an ant in my house. The stuff has really worked–knock on wood.

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