How to get rid of flying ants
The Origin of Flying Ants
Ants are social insects, their social life however, is weird by human standards.
Where there is an ant colony, there is an ant queen inside; laying eggs by the thousands. Majority of the ants that hatch are sexually immature and live their lives as worker ants in the ant colony; but, the specialized ants that are born and bred with the intent of reproduction are winged. Following two or three rainfalls, especially in the summer, the worker ants push the winged males and females out of the colony.
This phenomenon happens synchronically and in just a glance, flying ants could be seen by the hundreds, trying to fly as away from their initial colony as possible to avoid inbreeding. This phenomenon is called nuptial flight and it is the mating ritual of ants, the females fly away while the males have to chase them to prove that they are the fit for breeding. Breeding occurs midair, the male loses his genitalia in the process and having fulfilled his destiny; dies shortly afterwards. The females then land at a suitable place and shed their wings, rendering their wing muscles useless to get nutrients for the growing eggs from these muscles.
The success rate of the whole procedure is very low and only a fraction of ants make it to the next step of settling; and once the female settles and starts laying eggs, she is a queen and this marks the initiation of a new colony.
The Nuisance caused by Flying Ants
Humans usually let nature take its course unless it interferes and impedes with human life and settling queens are up to no good. Human houses are viable places for ants to settle and this is how the ants become pests.
This activity of ants usually occurs during the summer and flying ants can come inside the houses and can be recognized as smaller males and larger females, they are a nuisance for humans during the summer. And during the winter they are nightmares; the nuptial flight cannot naturally occur during the winter but the warmth in human houses allows it to occur all year long.
Frequent sightings of winged flying ants during winter is almost always an indicative of a colony inside the house. Activity of ants is usually detrimental to the house especially in the case of carpenter ants which can even chew wood with their powerful mandibles.
Winged ants are small packages of flying nuisance in themselves while the colony they come from is whole another story; they easily reach food and render it inedible and they easily destroy the wood-based framework of the house and render it fragile. Such nuisance has to be dealt with aggressively, finishing the whole colony is the only solution that ensures effective and radical removal of the ants.
How to get rid of flying ants
Flying ants that enter the premises of your house need to die or they can become a huge problem from just a minute bug.
One By One
Killing flying ants one-by-one can be a feasible solution in the summer when the actual ant activity occurs outside the house and only a few astray males and some settling queens enter the house. Aerosol sprays can be used to target each flying ant you see, they are commercially available and if required frequently, flying ant killer spray can be made at home by mixing some peppermint oil and soap in water.
Insect zappers can be employed if the house is located close to natural ant habitats as open lands and woods. When flying ants are too much in number for a manual aerosol spray to handle, a commercially available bug zapper can do the trick and could even eliminate other flying insects while at it.
When the colony is inside the house, keeping the flying ants at bay is of no use. The radical solution is to poison the whole colony with a commercially available pesticide after locating it or filling it with dehydrating powders as diatomaceous earth. Some drilling may be necessary in order to access the whole colony and eliminating the queen, because even if all the ants die, queen can recreate the whole colony alone, on her own.
Flying ants are just the sexually active forms of ants while the actual colony consists of workers and queen that require nutrition and food. The most radical and to-the-point solution is slow poisoning of the colony by intentionally leaving poisoned food for the ants to take in the colony. Borax or baking soda can be mixed with sugar to create such a deadly feast for the ants or if aspartame is available, it can be used as such.
If the colony is in the form of an ant hill, it can be simply taken down by pouring boiling water into the holes and over the hill. The solution speaks for itself, no ant colony, no flying ants.