Many of us have been guilty of squishing ants that dared to invade our personal spaces, but killing ants in your home could be making your issue worse.
If it seems like more ants enter your home after you kill one, you might be wondering, “Do dead ants attract more ants?” The answer is a resounding, although maybe confusing, yes. The next time you spot an ant marching across your kitchen counter, think twice before ending its journey with a swift squish.
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When you squash an ant, it releases pheromones that attract other ants to the scene. This is one of nature’s clever ways of ensuring the survival of the species. When an ant dies, it releases an olfactory marker known as a death pheromone that sends a signal to the other ants. In nature, these signals help ants deal with their dead. However, in your house, it can lead to a full-blown ant invasion.
Therefore, the act of killing ants may actually backfire and bring more unwanted guests into your home in the future. It seems counterintuitive, but try to avoid squishing ants you see in your house.
So, if killing ants isn’t the solution, what’s the correct way to remove an ant? Here are a few non-lethal methods that will help you get rid of these bugs for good:
- Catch it: Use a piece of paper to gently scoop up the ant and release it outside.
- Trap it: Invest in humane ant traps that capture rather than kill.
- Repel it: Try natural repellents, such as essential oils, which can deter ants without causing harm.
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Prevention, though, is always better than a cure. To keep ants out of your house altogether, here are some steps you can take:
- Seal cracks and crevices around your home where ants can enter.
- Keep your home clean, especially the kitchen and dining areas.
- Store food in sealed containers.
- Avoid leaving pet food out for long periods.
- Regularly dispose of garbage and make sure bins are sealed.
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Embracing non-lethal methods for ant removal and adopting preventative measures will not only save you from a home ant invasion but will also help you live peacefully with these creatures in the future.