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Ghost Ants - Get Rid of Ghost Ants
How To Get Rid of Ghost Ants
Getting rid of Ghost ants depends on your ability to locate foraging ants and nesting sites. Ghost ant colonies living in the soil or under items, such as stones or logs, should be treated by drenching each individual colony with a residual insecticide using a hand held sprayer.
If the Ghost ant colony cannot be located, outdoor liquid ant baits must be used. Sweet baits such as Greenway / Gourmet Liquid Ant Bait seem to be preferred over most other liquid baits.Spraying liquid pesticides for Ghost ants usually will result in rapid egg laying. This causes them to multiply faster making them worse. In order to kill and control these ants, the nest and the queens have to be eradicated and egg laying stopped. Spraying chemicals on baseboards and in cabinets won't kill the queens or hidden nest(s) inside the walls. Spraying outdoor areas can be expensive, time consuming and require repeated frequent applications. In most cases, using a liquid bait to control them works best. But it has to be applied outdoors.
Indoors, Ghost ants commonly nest in wall voids in insulation. They prefer to nest near and close to heat sources such as hot water heaters and hot water pipes. They have also been known to nest under bathtubs, in the walls of shower stalls, on exterior walls and even in potted plants.
Dusting of walls and voids with an insecticidal dust will help provide control and kill Ghost ant nests. Removing wall switch plate covers, plumbing access points (rings around faucets, drains etc.) and making small holes directly through sheetrock is usually necessary to apply the dust. Worker Ghost ants will crawl through the dust and die.
In most cases a slow acting dust such as BorActin (boric acid) is best because it doesn't kill the ants instantly. Instead, it's a slow kill giving them time to go back to the nest where they die. In time, the entire colony will slowly starve from the loss of the worker ants.
When dusting, use a small hand duster such as the Puffer Duster. The dust needs to be a very thin film, such as dust on a TV or furniture. Any thicker dust layer and the ants will crawl around it. Using a spoon or applying directly out of a bottle won't work as it leaves clumps. Don't apply dust to baseboards or cabinets. It is only applied inside of hidden areas such as walls, or in cracks, crevices, etc. If you can see the dust, it is not applied correctly.
Gel Baits and Bait Stations
Ghost ants can also be controlled by using Ant Gel Baits such as Advion Ant Gel Bait - if they feed on it. This bait has to be applied wherever the ants are seen. It also have to be monitored and replaced as soon as the ants devour it. Daily inspection of the bait is necessary and re-baiting until the ants are completely gone is essential. Putting out a gel bait one time will not work in most cases.
If insecticidal dusts, gel baits don't seem to be working, then focus your efforts outdoors. Outdoor control of Ghost ants is key to long term control. Any indoor control can be short term. If they are nesting and colonizing outdoors, then an outdoor treatment program is essential to any control effort.
The KM Ant Pro Liquid Bait system is the best overall approach to Ghost ant control and is only used outdoors.
Outdoor ControlOutdoors, Ghost ants live under mulch, bark, rocks, logs and almost anywhere a damp environment exists. Treatment of these areas with a residual liquid insecticide can help and even eliminate them entirely. These ants can also live in trees and shrubs due to their affinity for aphids and mealy bugs which produce honeydew - a sugary substance that they love and routinely feed on. The problem is that a complete treatment of the lawn, trees and shrubs and every possible location where they live can be difficult. One gallon of liquid pesticide per 1,000 square feet is the normal rate of application. If the lawn or area around the structure is several thousand square feet, it will take many gallons of spray with a hand pump sprayer. A quarter acre lawn (12,000 square feet) will take 12 + gallons of spray not including trees and shrubs. If on the other hand commercial spraying equipment is available, then this type of treatment may be more realistic.
The best liquid insecticides to use outdoors on lawns are Talstar, Bifenthrin, Demand CS and Onslaught Fastcap. These products vary in price with Bifenthrin being the least expensive and Onslaught Fastcap being the most expensive per gallon of mix. Onslaught Fastcap is microencapsulated and will last up to 6 weeks outdoors.Phantom and Termidor SC can be applied to foundation areas of homes and buildings up to 2 times per year. These products are not labeled for use on lawns or any where beyond the immediate foundation areas.
Outdoor baiting with liquid baits is the best overall approach to eradicating Ghost ants. The only product that works is the KM Ant Pro Liquid Bait Dispenser with Greenway / Gourmet Liquid Ant Bait. This patented dispenser dispenses liquid baits over months and months without any need for maintenance. Simply replace the bait every 90 days for best results.When Ghost ants find the KM Ant Pro dispenser, they begin feeding. The active ingredient used in Greenway / Gourmet Liquid Ant Bait is boric acid - the same material mentioned earlier in BorActin. The ants slowly begin dying and over a period of 60-90 days. The nests and colonies soon starve and crash. The benefit to using outdoor liquid baits, is that the workload and treatment time is reduced drastically. There also is practically ZERO effect on the environment because no pesticides are used. The main benefit however is that ants located off premises can be intercepted and killed before they infest and start new nests. Outdoor baiting can provide a barrier to help prevent future infestations. The KM Ant Pro Liquid Bait System not only kills Ghost ants indoors, it kills them outdoors. That's because ants that infest indoors will go outdoors to find food sources. The KM Ant Pro System provides this alternative food source. It's proven in University testing by the University of California at Riverside and has patents in the USA and in Europe. If you are looking of an easy solution to killing Ghost ants, there really is nothing easier than the KM Ant Pro System.
RELATED ARTICLE: KM Ant Pro Liquid Bait System
If You Must Spray Pesticides.....
Spraying will kill the exposed worker ants, but it will not kill the entire colony. If you are going to spray, make certain you know exactly what you are spraying and that it's a "non-repellent" insecticide. Non-repellent means the insects cannot detect its presence and will trail over it unknowingly. They pick it on their feet and antennae by crawling over it causing death.Non-repellent pesticides are not available at hardware stores or most farm and feed stores. Almost all are professional quality and only available through a specialty distributor such as ePestSupply.
Phantom Insecticide is an odorless, non-repelling pesticide that kills ants within a few weeks of application. Phantom works by entering the ants nervous system through grooming and food sharing and then systematically kills the ants through a degeneration process. Phantom is a "metabolic inhibitor" and kills ants very slowly. It can be effective at controlling most hard to kill species of ants. It is also labeled and used for termites, cockroaches, and others.Fuse Insecticide and Termidor Foam can also be used. These products can kill Ghost ants, but are not as efficient as liquid baits. They are also considered moderately toxic making them unsuitable for use in sensitive areas such as hospitals and nurseries. Insecticide dusts such as Timbor and BorActin can be used inside of walls, voids and cracks and crevices. These products are essentially Boric Acid based, non-repellent and very safe. Insecticide dusts will not kill the colony and will only kill the exposed worker ants.
Make It Easy
There are many products available to kill Ghost ants. There are also many different opinions on how to control them. The bottom line is that the nests have to be controlled in order to stop the egg laying and breeding cycles. Whatever method you determine is best for your needs, be sure to take into consideration the amount of time and potential frustration by using a "cheap" or inexpensive hardware store variety spray or bait. These products simply do not work and are not the same as commercially available products.
Outdoor baiting with liquid baits such as KM Ant Pro Bait Dispenser with Greenway / Gourmet Liquid Ant Bait is a long term solution to getting rid of Ghost ants. It will provide them with food sources outdoors and help prevent migration indoors. This system also helps intercept outside invading ants and creates a barrier to help prevent re-infestation outdoors. Year round use of this system can aid greatly in getting rid of existing ants and preventing future infestations.