May 28, 2009

Home Invasion

Last night was unbelievable! We had an incredible war with about 17 trillion black ants--not the tiny, stinky ones who ate our clothes and crumbs a little while back. I'd been fighting a cold (haven't had one in YEARS!) and decided I needed a steamy shower to clear my head. I'd just gotten my hair all soapy when Camille ran in to say there were ants all over the house. I'd only been in there about a minute, so I couldn't imagine that they were really all over the house. When I rinsed the shampoo from my eyes, I saw that they were also all over the shower. Okay, time to get out.

My mom was squishing them from the countertops while Camille and Ken were stomping. Caroline had only been asleep about 5 minutes, so we kept checking to be sure they weren't in her bed. Ken turned on the porch light and looked outside, and our concrete patio appeared to be moving. The ants were covering it, as well as the ground beyond the concrete. Ken switched into ORKIN mode and ran to the shed, looking for his handy dandy poison bottle.

I slipped on a hoodie to cover my wet hair and joined him in the fray of battle. I held the flashlight while he sprayed for about an hour, putting up a poison barrier around our house. The wind was strong and cold. Ken was good to try to keep me facing away from where the poison was being blown. There was no way he could avoid it, though, and he had to keep wiping his face on his sleeve and spitting out the spray that blew into his mouth/nose.

The ants were vicious, crawling all over us and biting without mercy. This wasn't as bad for me, since I could reach down and kill the intruders when I felt the stings. Ken, however, had the sprayer wand in one hand, the lever in the other, and a giant tank full of the leaking poison balanced carefully on his back. I guess he got bit about a hundred times, with no way to defend himself. He just kept spraying. How DO single moms survive? I couldn't help but think of our neighbors living on dirt floors with no poison spray, no lights, no man to make a barrier around their little houses full of sleeping kids. I prayed they weren't being overrun by these fierce intruders like we were.

When we finally got back in the house, I helped Ken pick off the ants that were clinging to him (they didn't want to let go!) and he jumped into a hot shower. Mom and Camille kept sweeping until most of the nasty buggers were outside. We dosed Ken up with some Benadryl and he's fine this morning.

It seems the recent rains (much needed but a bit problematic with so much, so soon) ran the ants from their underground lairs, and they were moving their colonies elsewhere. I hope they found a suitable home and will enjoy it for years to come, with no plans to come up for air.


  1. Hi Christie,

    We've experienced this before. What we've done is simply left the house. Don't spray, don't do anything. They are just passing through as quickly as they came, they will go. Looking on the bright side, they clean your floors from crumbs! If you spray, you clean up dead ants for days to come. Yes, if I remember right ours came around this same time of year (rainy season) too.

  2. Sounds like a plague from the Old Testament! What horror!

  3. We had this often in the jungle and sometimes their paths could be 6-8 feet across. If it gets to that point, you can not win and must leave. They will actually do a good job of cleaning out your house by eating other insects.
    The first time it happened to us, I thought it was like a movie and bad one at that!


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