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Why Does Sugar Attract Ants?

There is no doubt about it: sugar is the universal nectar of attraction. Not only do we crave it, but insects are also drawn to the sweet, sticky substance, perhaps more than to any other food. If you have ever wondered why your ant population seems to have such a sweet tooth, keep reading to find out what causes this puzzling phenomenon.

 

Sugar Equals Energy

Biologically, animals and insects of all kinds are driven to seek out sugar because it represents one of the most calorie-dense, and therefore valuable, foods available. Ants are notoriously hard workers, so they need more of these high-energy foods than other insects that don’t expend so many calories carrying supplies back and forth to their colonies, building and traveling around.

Since sugar is the edible equivalent of energy, ants recognize this and will go farther and work harder to seek out sweet things more than other foods. Sugar, honey and other forms of sweeteners will give them the energy they need to keep being the nonstop workers that they are.

Sugar Is Lightweight

Ants are famous for hauling around food particles that are many times their body weight and size. But sugar, which is typically very lightweight and therefore easier to carry than most other things, is often their ingredient of choice because it is so transportable.

If you have a perpetual sugar craving and regularly use it in your kitchen or are a frequent baker and love to make sweet treats for your family, it is important to clean up those sugar particles or droplets of honey every single time. When you avoid leaving sugary and sweet foods, including fruits, baked goods and the like, out on your counter or tabletop, you will eliminate a major cause of ants invading kitchens. Even traces of sugar or honey can attract ants to an area and have them traveling back and forth all day carrying these tiny amounts of energy back to share among their colony members.

Sometimes, no matter how clean you keep your kitchen and how carefully you clean up sugar spills, ants persist. If you do find that ants are some of the most regular visitors to your kitchen, you can use Combat baits and gels to get rid of these pesky critters for the long run. Good-quality ant baits and gels are both sweet and deadly: they attract ants with their combination of sugary substances and carb overload, but they are effective in destroying entire ant populations that consume them.