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Lucy Kehoe

Lucy Kehoe

Contributor

Lucy Kehoe is a freelance journalist and editor who has written for titles including Condé Nast Traveller, SUITCASE, Woman & Home and The Spectator.

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Articles (1)

Never mind the bedbugs: London is being taken over by unkillable ants

Never mind the bedbugs: London is being taken over by unkillable ants

Forget the bedbugs panic: London has a bigger pest problem. The creepy crawlies you didn’t know you already had in your flat? Pharaoh ants. Tiny, brown and almost invisible to the naked eye (until you encounter a column of them snaking across your kitchen en route to that sandwich you left out), these anxiety inducing pests are invading London homes this winter as they head indoors to escape the cold weather. Slurping up food, swarming bins and being as at-home in kitchens as they are in bathrooms and bedrooms, these invasive critters are taking over flats, council estates and hospitals across the city. Unlike bed bugs, they’re not prone to nibbling flesh, but the ants’ uncanny ability to infiltrate small spaces – including food packaging – means they can cross-contaminate your dinner with bacteria like salmonella and strep A. Mostly, though, they’re just annoying and gross. And they do sometimes bite people, according to the Mirror.  New housemates I first became aware of this impending ant-mageddon in June, when I spotted a lone ant explorer adventuring across my kitchen wall, antenna set for the peanut butter jar. Giving the kitchen an extra clean and moving any food sources to a high-up cupboard (forgetting I already lived on the fourth floor), the ant seemed harmless. I hoped it would disappear. But two days later, a small army were crawling across the counter – they’d found the new, undisclosed location of the PB. These days, I’m keeping all of my food in the sealed sol