DURING the warmer months, ants tend to invade your home and workplace in search of food, water and cover. They can sneak in through the tiniest of gaps.
Thoroughly sealing those entry points might slow them down a bit, but this intelligent little life form still manages to find its way in.
Here are some of the most effective techniques to keep them at bay:
1. Caulk them for good
Weather-resistant caulk from the hardware store will be most effective and lasting. Carefully search for tiny cracks and holes inside and outside and caulk them shut.
2. The spice attack
Sprinkle some cinnamon on your door entrances and window slabs. Other spices like red chilis and black pepper can work. Try salt too - or use a blend of ingredients to form a boundary line underneath the door, window sills or wherever the ants are most likely to crawl in. If you find the aroma of these spices a little too pungent, do not panic - you can use baby powder or baking soda the same way.
3. Vinegar spray
Take a small amount of white or apple cider vinegar, mix it up with tap water and pour the mixture in a spray bottle. Relentlessly spray wherever you spot them - no holds barred. If you don't like the smell, mixing peppermint or tea in water has the same effect.
4. Ant control products
Your supermarket has abundant pest control solutions from baits to liquids to sands - but think twice before using them. Some may be harmful, even poisonous, to people or pets - and they'll almost certainly be deadly to bees.
5. Call for help
Ants are creative in finding ways inside your home to find food and cover. You always have to be a few steps ahead to prevent a perimeter breach. Nothing beats a team of professionals coming in to take care of the invasion - and to keep the little buggers out.
Bugs too much to handle?
To get professional help:
Explain it once
No ring-around. Say what you need done, on servicecentral.com.au or on 1300 557 917.
They contact you
Get up to three quotes from certified, licensed, insured and qualified businesses.
You pick the best
Use quotes, feedback and online profiles to select the right provider for you.
Leave your own feedback.
For information on how to become a local Service Central member, call 1300 136 181 (press 4) or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Here's what really freaks us out ...
FROGS, moths, canetoads, snakes and even Christmas beetles worry some people, but it's spiders that really frighten us.
We asked our Facebook followers what creepy-crawlies freaked them out, and arachnids were the overwhelming answer.
Dee Pitts has reason to fear them: "Many years ago I was bitten by a funnel web spider - finished up in intensive care in agony - poison hit the heart."
Cheryl Rutter's nightmare? "Having a huntsman crawl on you while driving".
Jewels Ross says spiders are always a risk while doing bushcare: "(I) had a giant spider leap out toward me then proceed to chase me for a few metres."
But it's not all spiders. Nothing beats the bug horror that Mary Kleynjan experienced: "I took a spoon full of Milo out of the tin and put it in my mouth, then wondered why it was crunchie, spit it out and it was a cockroach..."