Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Ant Wars

The last few days have been characterised by my waking up in the morning to find the surfaces in the kitchen/bathroom/laundry/other living space black with ants.

My guess is that it's the rising temperatures driving the little buggers in from outside to escape the heat - we're certainly not leaving any sweet treats around for them to latch onto. (And how do they know if we are? Do they send out scouts, little advance parties that move under cover of darkness, returning in numbers later?). Whatever's bringing them in, though, I'm going bananas trying to keep them out.

At first it was almost fun, descending on the scuttling hordes with my spray cans and blasting them into piles of chitinous corpses. But then they came back. Only more so.

One trip to the DIY shop later and I was dousing the approaches to the house with surface spray, lethal to any insectine interlopers who dared to cross it.

And the next day they were back, presumably having crawled across the bodies of those killed by the surface spray, like troops climbing over the backs of comrades who'd fallen on barbed wire.

Apart from professional exterminators (not an option in our current financial climate), all that's left now are insect bombs - little canisters that resemble CS grenades, placed in the centre of a room and triggered. You abandon the house for a few hours as the place fills with gas lethal to your ant adversaries, then return later to sweep up what's left.

The problem with that is that the gas is extremely flammable ... and our boiler's on the blink. One little problem with the pilot light and we'd be returning to our house to find it transformed into a smoking crater.

With, presumably, a crowd of ants sitting around it, happily toasting bread crumbs.


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