Ants in the UK do not pose any risk to the public however they can be an annoyance if present in large numbers or in the home.
Garden Ant Control
Garden ants are usually a problem during spring and summer months. They often nest in lawns or flowerbeds, causing 'ant hills'.
Poor masonry, pipe entry points, cracks and crevices under doorsills and windows, air vents and drains are all possible entry points. These should be sealed (proofed) if appropriate with mortar or mastic to prevent further infestations.
Treatment of Garden Ants
Pouring a kettle of boiling water over the nest is a short term measure which would damage the nest but would be unlikely to destroy it completely
There are many household insects aerosols and sprays available from hardware D.I.Y stores and garden centres. These give a quick knock down but only offer short term control after treatment.
Bendiocarb and Permethrin are effective for longer periods if used along ant runs and entry points. The dust should be applied as a band around exterior walls by using a fine and even layer of powder.
If DIY treatments prove unsuccessful then you may wish to use a professional pest contractor who will have access to a wider range of pesticides than available to the public. A list of British Pest Control Association members can be found online at www.bpca.org.uk
Usually seen in late summer, these can be controlled by vacuuming around the nest area indoors to remove winged ants. This should be carried out before the use of an insecticide treatment.
The directions on how to apply pesticides are clearly shown on the product label and under the control of Pesticides Regulations. A pesticide should only be applied as detailed on the label. It is the responsibility of the owner to use a pesticide safely and only as directed, it is illegal to use pesticides in any other way.