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Winged ants usually appear suddenly and in large numbers. Although they are harmless, they can become so annoying that you want to fight them.

In a nutshell

  • flying ants are harmless
  • there are no flying ants as a distinct species
  • flying ants appear to allow the ant colony to multiply
  • Various methods and home remedies are suitable for combating it

The most important hint of all

If winged ants appear, don't panic. Such an infestation looks far worse than it is. It is neither necessary to spread poison nor to get a pest controller. There are no ants in our climate that can be dangerous in any way. Ants in the house do not damage the masonry or the roof either, they do not eat wood.

Where flying ants come from

There is no distinct species of flying ant, although the sheer numbers in which they occur suggest otherwise. Instead, flying ants are male and female specimens of perfectly normal garden ants on their nuptial flight. They are usually accompanied and cared for by a few ants without wings. After mating, the female animals start a new colony while the males die.

Where flying ants can appear

Winged ants can appear anywhere there are wingless ants. This means that they are just as common in gardens, forests and fields as they are indoors when conditions are favorable for the insects. A swarm of flying ants usually appears under certain weather conditions. For example, when the weather is warm and muggy or a thunderstorm is imminent. If there are many ants on the outer wall of the house and individual flying ants can be seen, you should definitely check the inside as well.

Home remedies to control insects

It is better for nature to do without poison and so-called bait boxes. Whole ant colonies are killed with this method. Instead, you can try a home remedy. As for flying ants, they will disappear on their own after a short while once the nuptial flight is complete, so there is no need to fight them. At best, there are many dead ants that are simply swept up and removed.

Interrupting the ant trail

This method is the most important of all. The ant colony is supplied with food through the ant streets. Wherever possible, a recognizable ant trail should be interrupted by appropriate measures. Chalk lines, for example, are suitable for this, but also other materials that ants either don't like or can't overcome. If you can see where the ant trail leads, you can also remove the target so that it ends in nothing. Do not just put food in another open place. It doesn't take long for the ants to find their destination again.

you can interrupt an ant trail with copper coins

Notice: Seeking ants that seem to be wandering aimlessly always remove them before they can even form a road.

use fragrances

Ants react very sensitively to smells and quickly lose their bearings when there are different scents. That is why scents such as lavender help against the insects directly on or on an ant trail. Lavender plants in the garden deter ants from starting a new nest nearby. Lavender oil in an aroma lamp ensures that you are not disturbed by flying ants in the house. It can also be dripped onto the ant trail or nest.

lavender oil

Acidic Foods

As much as ants like sweet foods, they don't like sour foods like lemon juice or vinegar. This can be used to wipe away ant trails on objects and surfaces. Clean kitchen worktops with vinegar cleaner.

Less recommended methods

If you want to drive away ants without really harming them, keep away from boiling water, the use of raising agents (baking soda, staghorn salt, baking powder) or special poisons. Poisons in particular can also be dangerous to other living beings, including your own home remedies. Birds, for example, are sensitive to insect sprays. Ant bait could be eaten by dog or cat. Poisons should not be used near food anyway, i.e. in the kitchen.

Notice: Raising agents seem harmless, but precisely because of their driving force they cause the insects to die in agony.

Important method in the garden

Ants are always present in a natural garden and they do no harm in small numbers. The situation is different when they start caring for aphids and protecting them against predators.
In such cases, it is important to get rid of the aphids themselves first. This is achieved on the one hand by promoting beneficial insects and on the other hand with non-toxic methods such as hosing down with water or plant manure. Some plant manure even helps against ants themselves, such as wormwood.

Ants in the lawn

Winged ants can also appear on grassy areas, where they quickly smolder over the blades of grass and then take off. If there is an ant colony in the lawn, it makes the most sense to dig it out together with the layer of soil underneath and move it to another spot in the garden. However, the ants can also simply remain in place if the green space is not used for sitting. Although the sudden appearance of winged insects can be frightening, they do not damage the lawn and are soon gone.


Preventing an ant infestation is not that easy, in fact almost impossible in the garden. Ant colonies can settle anywhere and, given the right conditions, they will also multiply. In addition, one cannot prevent the swarms of ants from other gardens.
It is easier to avoid ants in the house. The use of insect screens for windows and doors is helpful. If a lot of ants are spotted outside, windows and doors can also remain completely closed for some time. Flying ants are usually gone just as quickly as they came. bending forward doesn't prevent them from appearing, but keeps them out of the house.

Source: Patrick_K59, Flying Ant (15665490803), edited by Plantopedia, CC BY 2.0

Further preventive measures against a general infestation with ants:

  • Reduce aphids in the garden as much as possible
  • Do not leave any groceries, especially sweets, uncovered in the house
  • close possible hiding places
  • Wipe surfaces in the kitchen frequently with a damp cloth
  • Seal pet food securely
  • Clean feeding bowls regularly
  • do not leave full food bowls out for long

frequently asked Questions

When do winged ants appear and how many are there?

Most ants begin their swarm flights in mid-May. But they can continue well into the summer. While ants appear to appear in large numbers, it is rare for ants to appear in the hundreds or even thousands.

Are ants dangerous?

Ants are not poisonous to humans or animals and are harmless as long as they are not touched. Only the formic acid sprayed by attacked ants causes burning pain.

Is it possible to keep insects out of the house permanently?

This is almost impossible, especially in old buildings, because they use every crevice, no matter how small, to get in. Even poison or deterrents do not help in the long run. Once an ant colony has disappeared, it is often replaced by another.

Are ants protected?

Except for the wood ant, ants are not particularly protected. In principle, wild animals, including ants, must not be killed or taken from the wild without further ado. Ants perform many important functions in nature. Killing them is also redundant and pointless.

Do ants harm in the garden?

Ants themselves do no harm in the garden. On the contrary, they catch, for example, caterpillars of various species of butterflies. However, ants in connection with aphids are very annoying and can cause damage indirectly.

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