They arrived a few days ago and seem to have settled in, establishing all sorts of scented paths so their buddies can find their way and also move in and have a party in my cupboards and across my floor.
(Pictured above, an ant in Mexico--beautiful and not in my kitchen...)
My husband and I stomp on them when we're in the kitchen, which is not really an organized form of pest control, but it is effective for the ones under our heels. My son hates this.
He earnestly questions whether we think that the ants know that they're in our house and if they mean to bother us. It's all about intent for him. And, I do see the justice in that. It's not their fault and I wish them no harm, in principle. If they could just go away, I would be fine with that. But, since my son is right--they don't know that they're in our house, they won't feel the territorial pressure and go away from our turf. If I could mark our territory to make them back off I would. But the only scents I have are old perfume that I no longer wear, and lovely essential oils-- lavender, tangerine, clove, tea tree, eucalyptus-- that I use medicinally. That won't work.
I have, however, found something that seems to be working. I have liberally sprinkled Diatomaceous Earth all around our kitchen baseboards. Diatomaceous Earth is a powder comprised of ground up fossilized sea creatures. It feels like flour to the touch, but is quite abrasive and when pests walk through it or have it sprinkled on them, it cuts their skin or exoskeleton. After that, they succumb to extreme dehydration and die.
Sounds awful doesn't it?
Besides being effective, which is apparent today in my relatively ant--free kitchen, it is completely safe and non toxic. You don't want to breathe it in as you sprinkle it, as it can irritate, but other than that it is harmless unless you are measured in millimeters and then it is biological warfare.