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bucksone 01-30-2011 05:35 PM

Ants in kitchen cupboard
The other night I went to get something out of a kitchen cupboard and discovered a bunch of small black ants crawling around inside the cupboard. There is no food kept in this cupboard, just dishes. We removed and washed all of the dishes and haven't put them back in yet, as we would like to take care of the ant problem first. The next day we cleaned a bunch of dead ants off the kitchen counter directly below the cupboard. It's been a couple of days now, and I still see a few ants crawling in the cupboard. I have a several questions about this.

Why would ants be attracted to a cupboard where there is no food? What caused the ants on the counter below it to die? Is there anything we can use inside the cupboard to address the ant problem that would be safe to have around dishes we eat off of? I've read of trying to follow an ant's "trail" to see how they get in, but haven't had any luck doing so with it being a dark wood cupboard.

Thanks in advance for any assistance. I live in central Ohio, in case that is relevant to this problem.

mikeylikesit580 01-30-2011 08:37 PM

I had this same problem.
2 Things:
Kill The Ants. Use Terro, you dont need to kill the ants, you need to kill the nest. Terro Draws the ants in and then they take it back to the nest.
Then you need to prevent them. I found ants hate baby powder, and it wont kill you, so just put a couple of puffs in the cuboard and put the dishes back, you should be fine

Good Luck! let me know how it works

PAbugman 01-31-2011 11:12 AM

terro makes a product called "liquid ant bait"; it comes in plastic stations; you peel off the top to expose the bait. The small ants like the newer liquid and gel baits. Do not spray or use anything repellent as you could work against your baiting strategy. If you see them at the bait stations, leave them alone. They will take it to nest.

Don't know what could have killed the ants; it happens. The live ones were either looking for food; emerging out of the wall but near the cupboard; or it was a reproductive swarm.

Place the stations near the activity, but also scattered nearby. If you have a basement, place one station under the kitchen, but on top of the foundation wall.

bucksone 01-31-2011 06:27 PM

I placed the Terro liquid ant baits tonight. I'll report back on how it works. I'm wondering, with the ant baits in the cupboard, is it safe to put the dishes back in, or should I wait, since the baits will be attracting ants into the cupboard?

PAbugman 01-31-2011 06:32 PM

It's your call; there is no reason not to put dishes back in. The bait is boric acid based; the ants will be focused on the bait and trailing back on there own pheromones. If you want to wash the dishes before using them, that is an option.

Did you put any bait stations in the basement under kitchen? beneath the sink? behind stove/fridge? All good places, too. Usually the small ants live under cement slabs, so bait at floor level may be found first and it could keep them out of cupboards.

Keep us posted.

bucksone 01-31-2011 08:03 PM

I put one on each of the three shelves and one in the basement directly underneath, on top of the foundation wall. That leaves me two left, so maybe I'll put them under the kitchen sink, which is next to the cupboard in question. Thanks for the replies.

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