Thursday, April 14, 2011

Jordan's new expression

Yah, so Jordan's new expression is "So many ants!"

Why, you might ask?

Because, you guys, all of a sudden this morning we have SO. MANY. ANTS.

I came home last night and J and Betty were in the back room. He was pointing at the floor saying, "Ants! Ants! Ants!" There were a whole bunch, congregating under the carpet.

So I immediately got a wet paper towel and smooshed a whole bunch, wiping up as many as I saw.

Then again this morning he was all examining the floor saying, "Oh! Oh! Oh!"

I followed where his finger was pointing to a stream of ants heading towards a piece of food under the table.

If you have a child, you know that there is always some chunk of food somewhere that you don't want it. Or maybe I am horrifying you with my horrendous housekeeping.

"Oh!" and more "Oh!"

"Ants, Jordan, those are ants! So many ants!"

"So many ants! Uh oh!"

Uh oh indeed.

I don't know where they're coming from, although our house is not air-tight by any stretch of the imagination. But I couldn't find the starting point.

What I did find, however, was the long column of ants, marching along the edge of the carpet, heading straight to the wall, advancing along the wall, moving to the edge of the next carpet, back to the wall, around the fireplace, into the kitchen...

They're kind of fascinating, except for the fact that they completely freak me out.

I keep thinking of this story a friend of mine in Ecuador who lived in the rain forest. She said one day the ground was just covered in ants. They were everywhere. They came into her house, covered the floor, covered the walls, ate everything they came across, and then left.

Can you imagine?

I know these aren't rain forest ants, but they're so gross! Must figure out an ant solution!

Ants! So! Many! Ants!


  1. I had So! Many! Ants! in my old apartment. Nothing worked until I got some of the liquid traps from the hardware store (I don't know the brand but they were orange). The bait is sweet so they flock to it, and you can follow the line backwards to see where they are coming in and block it off. The bait also kills them slowly so the ones that make it back to the nest eventually kill off the source. You'd really need to keep your baby out of them though, they are sweet and really really sticky if they spill.

  2. Oh Lisa. You have my sympathies. Those ants are SO SO hard to get rid of. Anonymous is talking about Terro. Go to Home Depot RIGHT NOW and get them. It's the only thing that works. It's actually pretty safe around kids and pets, since it's mostly Borax. Initially it will attract more ants, but in 2ish days they will be basically gone. If you even see one more ant later, put out more traps. There is never just one! Good luck! I nearly lost my mind with ants in a condo we rented.

  3. I used to live in Bethesda and we'd get ants in the kitchen every spring/summer. Eventually "ant season" would end and they'd stop coming in, but they were a pain to deal with. I think we used some kind of trap.... but one of the most effective things was chalk. They can't cross it -- so we chalked off our food and some other key points. Good luck!

  4. The liquid ant traps are really the only thing that worked. My parents house has so many ants, and they could never get rid of them. But my boyfriend and I used the liquid traps at our houses and the ants were gone within a couple of days. No more ants. You do have to be careful about spilling them. My cats knocked them all over the floor and I still haven't gotten the sticky stuff off the floor/

  5. There is something about Spring that just instills the desire to be inside for ants.

  6. Oh my god, ants freak me out too. We have a recurring problem with carpenter ants (though I haven't seen many the last few weeks KNOCK KNOCK).

    My first apartment had the kind you have. I really really did not like them. I would come home from class and find them in the kitchen, walking past the stove. I'd turn the flame on and flick them into it one by one. Their ant buddies would come running -- to see what was making that racket? that odor? something -- and I would flick those in too. I am certain, if there is a hell, I will be in it and there will be ants.

    Did you ever see that Tarzan movie where he's going along one day and sees an ant on a sheep, and freaks out because it's a sign that a horde of ants is on its way? In the movie, everyone had to flee because the ants would cover and kill everything in their path, including livestock and people. Evidently that scene was scary enough to stay with me for all these years. No wonder I don't like ants.

  7. We have a group of ants that congregate in the same door frame every year at this time. They go away after a week or two. Hopefully, yours are the same disappearing variety.

  8. i didn't read your other comments yet but windex! spray it on them and they die and you spray it on their travel path and it closes the path for them. our exterminator taught us that awesome trick - he said they send out scouts and when those dudes find food they leave a scent trail from it back to the nest and that's what all the others follow, the windex is ine of the only things that removes that scent trail.
    of course to solve the problem you need to destroy the nest and that takes Tarro (terro?) which takes some stomaching at first but after a day or two solves your problem. it's sad that i know this much about treating ants : (

  9. For a cool experiment, you should try pouring olive oil in a cool design, onto a paper towel. In a couple of hours, the design will be outlined by tranced out ants that are motionless. It's quite fascinating, and something to do, while you wait for the Borax to kick in. Good luck.

  10. we have a product call deadant over here that you pour near the trail, must be up high away from kiddies thoug, i think the engredient is warfarin or something dreadfully dangerous like that.for outside we used ant sand in the garden where they were coming in from. good luck..i hate ants ,but I kinda miss them now theres a mice plague,our cat catches one a night...urgh nice to wake up to..

  11. Anonymous - At the recommendation of a bunch of people, I bought Terro pre-filled liquid traps on the way home. I think if we stick them under the radiator they will be fine. I am waiting for Nick to get home to figure out where to put them.

    Tia - I stopped at the hardware store on the way home and bought it! Thank you for the recommendation!

    Anonymous - When I lived in Ecuador they sold this stuff called Tiza China and you just took these chalk sticks and drew lines around your door, windows, etc. No bugs ever came in after that. It didn't occur to me they might have it here, though. I also assumed it was terrible poison.

    Jac - I am going to be so careful with them! The idea of permanent sticky stuff on the floor is so not appealing!

    lacochran - Someone at my office said this as well! They're coming out of the ground or something.

    Laura - Oh! We had to have our house treated for carpenter bees before we could close on it. Carpenter makes things sound very industrious but I believe that rather than constructing things they're boring holes in your wood, no? Terrible.

    As for the ants on fire...I don't think I could manage that. They freak me out but I also get kind of sad killing them.

    As for Tarzan, no, I never saw that movie but I have heard of that happening. So freaky!

    Hillary - Haha - wily little fuckers.

    Dana - I could handle if I knew they were temporary and we weren't going to be plagued by more and more of them. I don't particularly like killing them.

    jen - I think I'll go downstairs and Windex them as I wait for Nick! Thank you!

    nys - You know, you just brought up this memory for me. When we lived in Dacca, my dad put honey all the way down a long stick and we took it outside and put one end down near some ants and just watched them flock to it. Random, huh?

    IWASNTBLOGGEDYESTERDAY - Yikes. I am definitely not using something dreadfully dangerous with the kid around. I will see how the Terro with Boric acid goes. As for mice - eeeeeeee!

  12. Wow, terro, chalk, olive oil, Windex, ant sand - I learn so much here some days! Others, it's nothing but pure entertainment. ;)

  13. I came across your blog by accident about a month ago, and I became sort of addicted... :)
    About the ants: I feel for you - we had ants walking through the living room on the first floor (European counting) once, they marched up the wall on the outside and then through cracks and the spaces for heating to the inside.
    I'm glad you don't like to kill them because they are are rather useful too, they keep lice from your roses, for example. But I fear once they start walking through your home, you have to draw a line...

  14. I had that problem in NJ and had really good luck with the ant motel bait thingy. I put a bunch by their point of entry and just had to sweep the bodies a few times a week.

  15. I feel your pain. Unfortunately, Terro did not take care of our problem. And that was with both the Terro traps indoors and the Terro granules outside. I think we're going to have to call a pest control guy. Little shits.

    You should have seen the freakout I had when they moved into my car one time. I went to put my purse on the passenger seat, and there was a dark line, looked like a dirt smear. But, wait, it's moving? OMG ANTS!

  16. Boric acid and bay leaves helped my ant problem in the tropics (both the tiny sugar aunts that appeared as soon as any food hit the counter and the big mo-fos that could move furniture if they put their minds to it). The bay leaves went at the entry point, and the boric acid went along the trail. Good luck!


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