Best Way to Get Rid of Ants Effectively in Singapore

Ant Extermination

Just when you least expect it, you’re just working at your desk and snacking on some sweets. You leave to go to the toilet and … BAM. You find a hoard of ants infecting what was once yours. Need a cheap and effective way to get rid of them? Read on!

It seems like these 6 legged insects main purpose in life is to make us annoyed. Chances are, you’re more than likely to encounter an ant colony at some point in your life; be it at home or in your office.

Although I’m not an expert in the field, I have had my fair share of encounters with these pests. With tips and stories from my friends and colleagues, here is the ultimate guide on how to get rid of ants effectively.

More than just sweets

Before you charge for battle, you’ll have to know your enemy. All of us know that ants are attracted to sweets – but that’s not all. While ants are mainly attracted to food, some are even attracted to other dead insects.

With over 100 species of ants in Singapore, here is a 4 types of ants you’ll most commonly find.

Carpenter ants

Carpenter Red Brown Ant
Carpenter ant image from Rentokil Singapore.

Features

  • 15 to 17mm
  • Reddish-brown colour

Attracted to

  • Moisture
  • Honeydew
  • Dead insects

Commonly found areas

  • Wooden structures 
  • Trees
  • Bathrooms
  • Kitchens
  • Areas that are frequently damp

Pharaoh ants

Pharaoh Brown Yellow Golden Ant
Pharaoh ant image from Rentokil Singapore.

Features

  • 2mm long
  • Golden / Yellow-brown colour

Attracted to

  • Oily or protein-rich food

Commonly found areas

  • Anywhere a colony can be formed

Defence strategy

  • Colony will break up and scatter to new locations when sprayed
  • Will bite when threatened

Ghost ants

Ghost Translucent Black Ant
Ghost ant image from Rentokil Singapore.

Features

  • 1.3 to 1.5mm long
  • Dark heads
  • Translucent Bodies

Attracted to

  • Moisture
  • Sweet and sugary foods

Commonly found areas

  • Kitchens
  • Cabinets
  • Under the sink
  • Behind appliances

Defence strategy

  • Colony will break up and scatter when sprayed
  • Will bite when threatened

Crazy ants

Crazy Black Red Ant
Crazy ant image from Antwiki.

Features

  • 2-3mm
  • Black / Dark red colour
  • Long legs
  • Long antennae

Attracted to

  • Food
  • Prefers sugary food

Commonly found areas

  • Kitchens
  • Cabinets
  • Under the sink
  • Behind appliances

Defence strategy

  • Colony will scatter in all directions when disturbed

The line of ants

So … how bad is bad? Ants are common pests to find. You might not be bothered when one or two are crawling on your table. But when you’re seeing ant trails, that’s when you should start taking action. 

As ants travel, they release chemicals called pheromones. They use their pheromones to communicate with the other ants in their colony. When one ant finds food and brings it back, the other ants follow the pheromone trail to find the food. These trails are like the Global Positioning System (GPS) for ants.

The alarm defence

As a form of alarm defence, pheromone is also released when an ant dies. This is to warn the other ants of danger.

So the ant poison you’re using has to able to kill ants not just on the trail, but also in the colony.

Exterminators

While pest control companies are able to effectively get rid of the infestation, it comes with a cost. Services can be priced from $100 upwards, so  you better be thinking twice before handing your money over. Additionally, in order to effectively remove the ants, the exterminators will be visiting at least once a month. Just imagine all the fumes and toxic chemicals you’re paying for. 

So before handing over your hard earned cash, why not know more about some off-the-shelf ant bait first?

Tried and Tested

There’s a variety of ant poison available. From powders, to sprays, cubes and even chalk. So which one should you get?

Here are some of the ant poisons that have been tried and tested by us.

Tried and Passed: The Ultimate Ant Bait in Singapore

Now what if I told you getting rid of these pests could cost less than a gold coin.

Okay, your skepticism is understandable. You get what you pay for, right? But this ant bait is sure to change your mind like how it did mine.

Green Leaf’s Ant Killing Bait (~$1)

Ant Killing Powder Effective

This bait was sold at a ridiculously low price of $1 and you’ll be able to find it at the mini marts or household stores in your neighbourhood.

Each pack contains 5 grams of the ant bait and you’ll only need 0.5 to 1 gram of bait for each dosage. So you’ll be able to use 1 pack in different areas of your house or you can save the rest in a zip lock bag.

I managed to follow the ant trail and find that the ants were hiding in a small hole in the wall. I poured some of the bait out and waited for it to slowly take out the ants. Right after pouring it out, I could see a few ants inspecting it.

On the back of the packaging, it mentioned that the ants will be killed gradually over the period of two weeks. Imagine the shock of seeing this only after 15 minutes.

Warning: Disturbing images of ants ahead

Ant Killing Powder Poison

The ants were feasting on the poison and had very obviously called over their fellow ants. And in another 30 minutes, more ants have gathered and I could even see some shrivelled up and dead.

Ant Killing Powder Poison

The thought of the other ants being warned and avoiding the bait was a possibility but by morning, the whole trail was gone.

Dead Ants Killed By Poison

While a majority of the ants were killed, there were still a few around the bait. The amount of poison in the area decreased and was replaced by the ants from the colony.

It may look disgusting but at that will be the last of those ants! Now all you have to do is clean up the area using a wet cloth and dispose everything into the bin.

Also, a little goes a long way. Don’t be like me and pour too much of the bait out.

Where to buy it:

Whampoa Drive Ant Poison Shop

First Price 

88 Whampoa Drive, #01-151, Singapore 320088

Ant Bait Home Product Store

T-Luck Home Care

Blk 804 Hougang Central, #01-122, Singapore 530804

9AM – 10PM

Shopee

While it is slightly pricier to purchase online, you can also buy the ant bait here.

Be warned

While this product was super effective, be sure to clean up the mess. After a day of leaving the bait out, the ant trail was gone and I cleaned up the mess that was left behind. It’s better to place the bait into a box and leaving it near the trail to make clean up easier.

If you have pets, be sure to keep them out of the area until the poison has worked its magic on the ants.

Tried and Failed

Golden Hammer Pesticide Chalk (2 sticks for $2.30-$6)

Golden Hammer Pesticide Ant Chalk

All you have to do with the chalk is draw parallel lines across the ant trails or around their hiding place. When an ant comes into contact with the powder, their nervous system will start to fail and they will eventually die. Unfortunately for us, the ants just simply found another route to take on their quest for food.

Combat Ant Mini ($7-$8 for 12 baits)

Ant Killing Bait Effectiveness

These cubes are even simpler to use. Just remove the sticker backing and paste the ant bait holder wherever the ants frequent. The ants will take the bait and bring it back to the colony where the bait kills them all.

These baits are to be replaced every 3 months. Strangely enough, the ants weren’t reacting to it and there was still a lot of bait left in the cube.

Vinegar and water ($2-$8)

If you have some vinegar at home, you’re all set to be a home exterminator. Mixing equal parts of vinegar and water will create the concoction to disrupt their pheromone trail. Just spray the solution onto the trail of ants. Without direction on where to go, the ants will lose track of where to get food or even how to get back to their colony.

While this managed to confuse the ants, it was not a long term solution. Eventually the vinegar effect will subside and they’ll be back to their infestation.

How to ensure they’re gone for good

Now that you’ve gotten rid of these unwelcomed pests, what can you do to make sure they don’t make a reappearance?

  • Clean up food and drink spillage IMMEDIATELY
  • Store food (especially things like sugar, cereal, candy, etc…) in proper containers
  • Wipe down bottles and containers that are used to store honey, jams and spreads
  • Keep the areas in your home / office dry

We hope that by the end of this article, you’ll be more informed about how to tackle these tiny monsters. We wish you all the best for your attack on the ants!

Let us know what did and didn’t work for you in the comment section below!

Sources:

4 types of ants information from Killem Pest.

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Writer: @furdoors

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