Home Remedy Fact or Myth: Does Chalk Actually Deter Ants?
Most people have witnessed a skillfully-executed home invasion conducted by ants. The small, yet intelligent creatures may be found in the kitchen near trash cans, sugar, and any other potential food source. Though it seems like ants can invade overnight, many people struggle much longer to get rid of the insects. One common remedy that is often used to deter ants is drawing a line around entry points using chalk. While many have successfully prevented ants from returning to their homes by using chalk, there is much debate regarding the reason this remedy actually works.
Some people argue that it is the talcum powder content of regular classroom or sidewalk chalk that keeps ants at bay by interfering with the insects’ sense of touch. Based on this reasoning, a line of baby powder can be substituted for chalk if chalk is unavailable. Others suggest that chalk or any sort of powdery line interferes with the chemical trails ants leave behind. According to this theory, ants that encounter a chalky, powdery line while following the chemical trail become confused and no longer have a clear path to follow into a person’s home. Still others argue that chalk that is made of the crushed shells of marine animals. The crushed shells contain calcium carbonate, which is believed by some to be a natural ant repellent.
It is important that consumers not confuse the classroom or sidewalk chalk remedy with ant chalk, also known as “Miraculous Insecticide Chalk” or Chinese chalk. Unlike common chalk that is used by teachers and children, ant chalk is a chemical insecticide that simply resembles classroom or sidewalk chalk. Consumers should avoid purchasing this product as it has been found that the product’s labels often do not comply with lead content regulations, and ant chalk has been alleged in cases of child poisoning.
While the exact reasoning may still be unclear, many people find drawing a chalk line to be an effective, natural way to deter ants. Chalk offers the benefit of being safe for animals and small children, and it is easy to clean up. However, if repeated attempts to use chalk as a barrier against ants fail, it is best to enlist the services of a qualified pest control company to assess the situation and deliver an effective solution.
When using any type of at home remedy such as chalk, keep in mind any pets and small children that you may have. Either keep the pets and children away from the chalk or take precautions to make sure they cannot be within reach of it around the house.
For professional help with your ant infestation calls Clegg’s today at 1-888-MR-CLEGG or contact us online.