Ant Removal

Although there are several different types of ants in British Columbia, Vancouver home owners most often call about either pavement ants or carpenter ant removal. Pavement ants are dark brown to blackish in colour and range from 2.5 to 4 mm in length. Carpenter ants are quite a bit bigger. Ants have a highly social living arrangement and are grouped by their job in the colony – like bees, common jobs are workers, drones, and a queen. Inside, these annoying little pests can nest in your walls or seams of your floor, usually near the warmer areas. Outside, they tend to nest under flat stones, rail ties, or the concrete slabs of your patio. The adage about ‘ants at a picnic’ is true as they always seem to show up when you’re ready to entertain. Treatment for Pavement ants will consist of a light residual spray to all active areas and perimeters of the affected unit.

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Generally, ants range in colour from yellowish or red to black.  Common sizes range from as small as 3 mm to approximately 13 mm (½ an inch) for carpenter ants.  Ants are insects and have 6 legs and a set of mandibles. Ants are social and live in colonies.  Ants that seem to be ‘touring’ are part of the largest group of ‘worker’ ants in a colony whose primary responsibility is to forage for food, then carry it back to the colony, informing other workers of its whereabouts.  Similar to bees, worker ants are non-sexual females.  There is one queen and a few male ants for her to mate with.


Ants eat almost anything and enjoy virtually all human food, vegetation and meat. They are especially known for their incurable sweet tooth. As previously mentioned, ants live in colonies from a few dozen members to millions of members.  Some species’ colonies are very highly organized.  Ants are found on every continent with the exception of Antarctica and a few isolated islands.  Their success in acclimatizing to different areas of the world is usually attributed to the social structure of their colony life.


Inside, these annoying little pests can be nesting in the walls or seams of your floor, usually near the warmer areas. Outside, they tend to build nests under flat stones, rail ties, or the concrete slabs of your patio. They tend to gain access to Vancouver homes through:

  • windows
  • holes in foundations
  • heating ducts and air-conditioners
  • power or telephone cables
  • points where tree branches or other vegetation come in contact with the house
  • wooden structures attached to houses (like porches and sheds)
  • firewood brought into the house


Depending on the size and species of ant, you may see them moving slowly or more rapidly along the floor or in cupboards and other confined areas. Other evidence includes seeing piles of fine wood shavings near damp wood either indoors or out of doors if carpenter ants are suspected.  From time to time, you may find a nest – if indoors, be careful not to disturb it as this may cause the colony to split and look for a safer location to build their home.


As with other pests, it is often easier to take preventative measures prior to developing a problem.  Some methods for Vancouver Ant Removal homeowners can try are:

  • Keep kitchen countertops clean. Sweep the floor often, especially around pet dishes. If ants have been spotted, mop after sweeping.
  • Rinse containers before putting them in the garbage or in recycling bins.
  • Empty kitchen garbage containers often.
  • Place composters at a reasonable distance from your house.
  • Place pet food dishes in a shallow dish of water. Ants can’t swim, so they won’t be able to get at your pet’s food.


Treatment for most kinds of ants consists of a light residual spray applied to all active areas and perimeters of the affected location.

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