Many people get annoyed and disappointed to see ants back in their rooms, even after using Terro ant bait. You should look for the reasons and find the cause for its ineffectiveness.
Why Is Terro Ant Bait Not Working? Terro ant bait does not work due to changes in the dietary habits of ants, the use of the incorrect amount of bait, and changes in its consistency. It can also happen when you target the wrong species or not showing patience. It loses efficiency over time due to expiration, poor storage conditions, and environmental disturbance. They can also be busy following another food trail.
Many ants avoid baits when you offer toxic and sweet foods in containers having the unpleasant odor of detergent because these insects avoid strong scents.
Changes in the dietary habits
Ants have varying nutritional demands at different times of the year as the colony requirements change seasonally. They need carbohydrates during summer and prefer to eat sugary foods.
You can find these crawling creatures everywhere during warm weather as they eat a wide variety of food types. They reach countertops to get nutrition from uncovered fruit trays.
However, they switch eating habits and choose protein-rich food in mating season as they have to feed new larvae that need proteins to build their bodies.
So, the ants looking for protein food are not attracted to Terro baits because it contains sugar and attracts only sugar-loving insects, so it is not effective against protein-loving creatures.
Reduced potential to attract
The efficiency of Terro ant bait reduces over time, according to the manufacturer. Its quality begins to decrease due to aging, which means it is not durable for a lifetime.
Some people do not place fresh bait stations and rely only on the older ones for many months, which increases the insect population indoors.
Moreover, older baits do not remain attractive for insects because the nature of ingredients begins to change after some time and make an overall solution ineffective against ants.
In addition, the solution’s consistency can also change as it turns into thick material from a liquid or becomes hard. These insects prefer liquid food to solid granules, so they avoid it.
So, it is time to replace stations with fresh baits when you find that it does not allure any insects from the surrounding areas.
Busy following another food trail
Ants form food trails using chemical secretions or pheromones that help keep them connected with each other and the food source. These chemical odors remain on the ground for many days.
In addition, these insects keep following trails to reach their food until they find a source to be depleting or insufficient to meet their requirements.
They are not attracted to another food source if they are already a part of a food trail and getting their food from another source.
So, the presence of an alternative food source or a food trail can be the reason for the failure of Terro baits, so you have to follow the trails to see their destination.
You have to divert their attention from an old source by keeping the nearby areas clean and removing their old food so they show interest and reach these stations.
Lack of patience for results
People probably become impatient after using Terro baits to see the results and make the building free of pests, but it is better to know its time of action.
It is a slow-acting poison and takes around 3 to 10 days to kill ants and clear the home. Accordingly, it is not suitable to expect instant results because you have to face disappointment.
Workers reach the bait station in a few minutes and take the liquid material back to their nests to feed the remaining colony members after holding it in their stomachs for some time.
So, you have to be patient enough after placing the baits because it can take a few days to weeks to affect the digestive system of insects.
Some environmental factors can also contribute to reduce the killing potential of Terro ant bait and affect the number of insects attracted to it.
Rainwater can wipe out the ingredients from the ground and make it unavailable for insects outdoors after the rain ends. Similarly, it cannot tolerate high temperatures and degrades quickly.
The Terro dust is waterproof and remains on the ground for 6 to 8 months, but the liquid bait stations get filled with rain water and wash away.
So, you have to pick stations from the ground for discarding and replace them with fresh ones. It is better not to expect ants to reach a station filled with rainwater and die.
Incorrect amount of ant bait
The amount of bait also determines its effectiveness for removing ant colonies because a smaller amount and a few stations are not enough to deal with a larger colony.
Accordingly, you have to look for the colony size and put multiple stations at different points to increase the number of insects attracted to the stations.
I got disappointed many times by the popular Terro ant bait because it was not working, but then, I found a mistake as I was using only 2 stations to deal with hundreds of insects.
You can also get dis-hearted from the results of seeing many insects indoors after using only 2 to 4 stations indoors, so put some more bait stations to increase chances for colony death.
Targeting the wrong species of ants
It is better to know the exact species of insects invading your house to find a suitable solution to get rid of them because Terro baits are not effective for some species.
There is a possibility that you are targeting for wrong species; that’s why it is not working. It can efficiently attract pavement, argentine, or red imported fire ants and kill them.
In addition, you can also get rid of the little black, odorous house, ghosts, and thief ants with it. You cannot use it for pharaohs, carpenters, and harvester ants as they do not find it attractive.
Not proper storage conditions
Some people do not bother with storage conditions and keep the terror ant bait packages in humid conditions or hot places that can alter the properties of the ingredients.
Every manufacturer provides instructions for handling and storing the baits that need to be followed to avoid a reduction in their efficiency in killing the ants.
It is better to check the storage conditions for Terro as they remain good in dry and cool places, but they lose functionality when you are not keeping them in proper storage conditions.
Not suitable placement of ant bait
Terro ant bait placement plays a crucial role in killing an ant colony because it needs to be closer to its trails for an increased chance of uptake.
It seems foolish to put it outdoors when dealing with an insect colony indoors behind the baseboard. You have to keep it closer to the colony so that its receptors detect it.
I got frustrated to see no ants around bait stations outdoors when there was an indoor infestation, so I brought it inside the building, kept it close to their trails, and got the desired results.
However, they can also choose another closer food source from the kitchen or bathroom when you have placed it at a distance or outdoors, making it not an effective killing strategy.