3 Ways to get rid of fire ants

June 3, 2016By

Fire ants are much more than an annoying little insect that gets on your nerves. These pesky critters can also cause severe pain if you step on one of their mounds or try to get rid of their nest and you are unsuccessful. Their sting is one that can continue being sore for weeks. That does not mean that you have to treat them with some kind of toxic chemical. There are other ways to get rid of fire ants that can be safe and just as effective.

get rid of fire ants

About Fire Ants

The fire ant is an insect that can be found most commonly in the southern United States. You can usually locate them where there is a sufficient amount of moisture like on lawns that get watered frequently, near rivers, ponds, lakes, and even along the edge of highways. You are most likely not going to be able to see the nest of a fire ant because they live inside of things like bricks, timber, logs, and under sidewalks or in the walls of buildings. They find a crack or hole and use that as an entry and exit point.

When a fire ants home is disturbed, they will react quickly by climbing onto the person or object that has caused the disruption. They will bite and sting over and over again leaving a welt that will turn into a white pustule. These bites can be painful for several days or weeks.

3 Ways to Effectively Get Rid of Fire Ants

Bucketing

One simple yet effective way to get rid of fire ants safely involves using a bucket. Take the large bucket and coat it with cornstarch or baby powder. This is going to prevent the insects from crawling out after you catch them. Choose the point of the day when most of the ants are in their nest. In the spring this is usually 10-12 in the morning and in the summer early in morning is best. Use a shovel to dig around the colony and about a foot down. Throw the entire nest into the bucket. Be sure to cover yourself to keep the ants from getting to you. Then, take the bucket and dump it somewhere else where they won’t be bothersome, or drown them in a solution of water and dish soap.

Hot Water

Another environmentally friendly way to get rid of fire ants is using hot water. Get about three or four gallons of water scalding hot. It does not need to be boiling, but it should be reasonably hot. Dump the water into the colony. This method may require you to repeat the procedure for three or four days to completely kill off all the insects. Remember that hot water is dangerous and you can be hurt if it gets on your skin.  Also, be aware that hot water can kill the grass and shrubs that are in contact with it.

Diatomaceous Earth

Silica crystals are known to scratch fire ants cuticle causing them to die of dehydration. In order for it to be effective, you have to gather the ants up in a bag and shake them up with the diatomaceous Earth. In most cases, only about half of the ants are going to die.

If you try to use this method by placing the material outside, there is probably not going to be a whole lot of effectiveness to it. The ants are going to find a way to avoid it so they do not die. If it is put in food, the ants are not going to eat it. Therefore, it won’t be taken back to their nests and given to the rest of the ants and even the queen causing a massive amount of the insects to be killed.

If you are still struggling with getting rid of your fire ants, the knowledgeable team from Fischer Environmental is here to assist you. We serve the Louisiana and Mississippi Gulf Coast with over 60 years of experience. Contact us today to help you in the next step of clearing up these pesky critters once and for all.

Filed in: Ant Control