Prepare a boric acid bait using mint or apple jelly for sweet-loving ants, or use peanut butter as bait for grease- and protein-loving ants. While borax and boric acid are often confused, borax is a laundry additive and boric acid is used in insecticides.
Determine the type of ants by placing a strip of masking tape near the trail and adding small amounts of jelly and peanut butter on opposite ends. Check the test strip within a couple of hours to see which bait is most attractive to the ants. Remove the tape strips and discard them. Prepare the appropriate bait to eliminate the ants.
Purchase boric acid from the pharmacy department of a local retail venue. It is often located near the eye-care products. To prepare the bait for ants attracted by the jelly, mix 2 tablespoons of mint jelly with 1/4 teaspoon of boric acid. While other jellies also work, mint seems most attractive to ants. Place the bait in areas where you see ants, but keep it away from pets and children.
To attract protein loving ants, mix 4 tablespoons of peanut butter with 6 tablespoons of honey and 3/4 tablespoon of boric acid. Place the bait near ant trails.
Boric acid is a slow-acting insecticide that allows the worker ants to transport the poison to the anthill. It is consumed there by the entire colony, which facilitates elimination of the ant problem.