Why Ants Return Every Spring & How To Deal With Them

May 01, 2024

As soon as the temperatures rise, ants seem to appear out of nowhere, invading homes and making nuisances of themselves. But why do ants come back every spring like clockwork, and what can Maine homeowners do to keep these pests from infesting their kitchens, bathrooms, and properties? In today’s blog, we’ll uncover the reasons behind the annual ant invasion and discuss effective strategies for dealing with these pests. 

carpenter ants on an old wood deck outside maine home

It's been a long winter, and ants are ready to eat 

Although it may not seem like it, the truth is ants aren’t trying to annoy you. They’re just trying to survive, and they cannot do that without food. Unfortunately, it’s been a while since they enjoyed a meal, so as soon as the cold weather goes away, these pesky insects emerge from their nests in search of sustenance. Unfortunately, they don’t just limit their search to the outdoors but also explore the indoors, including homes and buildings. Dirty dishes in the sink, a missed crumb on the kitchen counter, or even a tiny remnant of last night’s dinner on the floor may be all it takes to attract ants. 

Food isn’t the only thing ants are looking for

Like us, ants also need to stay hydrated to live. Dripping faucets, leaking pipes, damp basements, and other moisture problems around the home could also lure ants in. 

Too much rain or lack of rain may send ants searching for shelter in the spring

After heavy rains, ants often seek refuge indoors where it is dry and warm because their outdoor nests become flooded. Likewise, periods of dry weather can also bring ants inside, searching for water. 

Ants focus on expansion in the spring

Ants become more active in the spring, and besides venturing out for food and water, they also look for suitable nesting sites. This increased activity can lead them right into homes and buildings. 

How to prevent spring ant problems

While ants may be a nuisance, there are ways to discourage them from making themselves at home in your home. Here are a few ant prevention tips our Auburn-based pest control company recommends:

  • Seal entry points.
  • Install door sweeps.
  • Seal garage door gaps. 
  • Maintain cleanliness.
  • Address moisture issues.
  • Replace water-damaged wood. 
  • Empty trash cans regularly.
  • Store food in containers with tight-fitting lids.
    Trim trees, bushes, and shrubs back so that they don’t touch your house.
  • Haul away rotting or decaying stumps, wood, and other organic debris in the yard. 
  • Unclog gutters. 
  • Eliminate standing water. 
  • Don’t overwater your lawn.

What to do if you find ants in your home this spring

Identifying the type of ant that has invaded your home can be challenging due to their small size. However, it is crucial to determine the type of ant you are dealing with. Here in Maine, we deal with a few kinds of ants: little black ants, odorous house ants, pavement ants, crazy ants, cornfield ants, and wood-damaging carpenter ants. It is important to note that there is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to treating ants. Each type requires a tailored approach to effectively eliminate them.

At the first sign of an ant problem on your property, we highly recommend seeking professional help.

How Pine State Pest Solutions exterminates ants 

If you have been trying to keep ants out of your house or yard but have been unsuccessful, contact Pine State Pest Solutions for help. Since 2011, our locally owned and operated pest control company has been providing ant control services in Auburn, Bowdoin, and Freeport, as well as throughout Androscoggin, Cumberland, Kennebec, Oxford, Sagadahoc, and York counties. We offer both standalone carpenter ant control and year-round home pest control services that can prevent ants and other pests from invading your home. You can check out our Home Protection Plan for more information, or simply fill out our form or give us a call!

*initial start-up fees may apply.

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