White Footed Ants are common pests in New Zealand homes and gardens. Some colonies or nests may exceed a million individuals.
Identify the problem
- White Footed ants are small dark ants look similar to Argentine Ants and Darwin Ants to the naked eye but can be identified by the pale ends to their legs but only with the aid of a good lens or microscope.
- They are often found climbing trees and walls and will readily infest upper floors of buildings.
- White footed ants disperse by both budding into new colonies and through winged nuptial flight phase and dispersal flights.
- Find the ant nest sites. In most cases ant nests will be in warm, dry sandy soil, often under a rock, paving stone, driveway etc. where the nest is kept dry. On warm days search for a stream of worker ants going back and forth into a hole in the ground. It may be possible to drop bread crumbs in their path and then watch the ants carry the crumbs back the nest. Do not treat this entrance with insecticide yet.
Now carry out the Kiwicare 1-2-3 Bait-Barrier-Destroy program.
- Use many small amounts of NO Ants Gel Bait or NO Ants Liquid Bait where you see ants or have seen them in the past. If the gel is not being taken, try the liquid bait and vice versa. Workers feed on the bait and take it back to the nest to feed and kill the queen(s) and larvae. Replenish the bait regularly until you see no more (or very few) insects feeding. Only then should you use spray insecticide to eradicate the nests and to act as a barrier to further infestation. Ants are very sensitive to strong chemicals. All dishes or containers used to hold bait should be rinsed well with clean water and dried before use. A great alternative is to use a strip of masking tape and squeeze the bait on top. The tape will hold the bait in place and can be easily removed.
2. Stop them with barriers
- NO Ants Barrier Spray, NO Bugs Indoor and NO Bugs Super surface sprays will kill ants that cross the treated surfaces but will also act as a barrier; many species of ant will avoid the treated surfaces if possible. It is best to think of sprays used in and around the home as barriers. Sprinkle LawnPro Protect or LawnPro Lawnguard Granules on nest entrances to destroy the nests. Also sprinkle them in flowerbeds, drives and gravel pathways in a ring around the home. When watered in it penetrates the soil killing nests and acting as a ‘curtain’ barrier.
3. Deny them a nest site
- Brush NO Ants Ant Sand into the cracks and crevices in paving and driveways to kill nests and prevent ants using these nest entrances.
Did You Know
- In general getting rid of and control of White Footed Ants is the same as for other ant species. See here.
- White Footed Ants can be more difficult to control using baits because of their habit of feeding larvae and queens with unfertilised eggs that they lay rather than the food that they feed on directly. This means that baits may be already 'processed' and toxin removed or the workers are dead before they have a chance to feed the rest of the colony in the nest. The reduced effectiveness of baits means that more reliance on contact insecticides such as NO Bugs Super and barriers is needed to control these nuisance ants.
- Stick masking tape on delicate surfaces and then apply bait onto the masking tape. This protects the surface and allows easy removal.
- Some ants 'farm' aphids and scale insects for sweet secretions and it worth treating your plants with suitable garden insecticides to control these sapsucking plant pests and deny the ants their food supply.
- LawnPro Lawnguard Granules or PLANThealth Insect Hit Granules are useful in areas of garden where ants are a nuisance and as an additional barrier around a house or other building. The prills (granules) are sprinkled onto soil and gravel surfaces where ants are travelling and then watered in to take the insecticide deep into the soil, forming a curtain barrier.
- More information on Darwin Ants and Argentine Ants.
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"The result was much better than that when I hired some pest controllers previously." Firstly, I'd like to thank your company for good advice to get rid of ants from home. I bought the products (both NO ANT GEL BAIT and NO ANT LIQUID BAIT) from Mitre10 and followed that suggestion. The result was much better than that when I hired some pest controllers previously. *But I found some problem. The Gel bait worked perfect. The liquid bait was too strong. Ants just died around the bait area, which made the bait containers shipped with the bait only useful for once or twice. Besides, if ants can not bring back the bait to their nest, there would be less chance that it can kill the queen. I hope the liquit bait can have similar effect to that of gel bait.