Those Ants Could Be Eating Your House Like Termites
During an Orange County summer at the peak of my childhood, our family’s food began to mysteriously disappear. In the summertime our kitchen was always filled with food; packaged foods, fresh fruits, desserts and canned goods. Everything seemed to being going as good as they could possibly be… or so we thought.
As usual during the summer days, we would leave the door open to get fresh air circulating throughout the house. The smell of the fresh summer air gave everyone a warm feeling as we went about our day. Not one member of my family knew the horrible consequences that could occur by leaving that door open. As time went on, we started to see small disturbances throughout the house. My mother pointed out that there were small wood shavings around the walls, as if something had tunneled its way in our house. On another occasion, my sister pointed out a dead ant near the door that we would leave open, the ant was big and black, one which my father called a Black Carpenter Ant. From then on we could not leave that door open for more than a few seconds for fear of an infestation, although none of us knew that we were way too late.
My Mom Thought It Was Rats
More time passed with just a few subtle signs of the ants here and there, but nothing big had come yet. We continued as we had, with our only precaution being to close the door after a few seconds after it was open. One day my mother had decided to bake us some chocolate chip cookies before the end of the night. We left quite a mess, as kids do, with crumbs all over the counter and small pieces of cookie on the floor. Shortly afterward, we went to bed only to wake up with most the cookie pieces and crumbs gone. My sister and I asked our parents if they had cleaned our mess up, however they denied having cleaned anything that night and began to assume the worst. The next night, my parents purposely left out small pieces of food all over the kitchen along with a mouse trap, assuming that we had a mouse hiding somewhere. The next morning, we woke up to discover that nearly all the food was gone with the mouse trap completely undisturbed. One word came to all of our minds, “PEST CONTROL”.
That very day, my parents had called for an exterminator to come out and inspect our kitchen for rats. They had him come out that following Monday since we were so close to a weekend. During that weekend, my parents did their own inspecting, by looking through every part of the kitchen, which once they were close to the floor they could hear a rustling sound coming from an unknown source. Bright and early Monday morning, the doorbell rings, my mother answers it and lets the exterminator in, so he can begin inspecting the house for whatever pest was stealing all of our crumbs. Not ten minutes passed and he pulled up some loose floor boards in the kitchen revealing massive amounts of Carpenter ants. These ants were huge and were carrying even more of our food then we knew about, they traveled in a long line and chewed through wood. Just a few chemicals were sprayed that day, and after that we only saw small remnants of the ants from then on. So the mystery of the missing food was finally solved and my family went back to the warm summer days we had come to love and enjoy.