Under normal household conditions, ants do not get attracted to blood. But as blood is a rich reservoir of salt, protein and other nutrients sometimes they can end up attracting ants, particularly in instances where the ants are suffering from food scarcity.
Ants generally do not often suffer from sugar deficiency in their diet but can suffer from a salt deficiency, which may lead ants to being attracted to blood.
They need mineral salts for optimal functioning of their body. As this research shows, it has been found that certain ant varieties that have serious salt deficiencies in their diet can get attracted to blood droppings owing to their high salt content.
Do Ants Eat Blood?
Ants can consume blood as it’s a rich source of nutrients.
Ants do not consume food for their taste but because of their nutrition value only. Hence, as long as a food option contains loads of nutrient sources in it, ants will eat it.
It is more common to see ants feeding on blood and urine in locations where food is scarce. Otherwise, in the majority of the cases, ants residing in the household won’t readily be attracted to blood samples as they already have a wide variety of food samples available to them.
Does Period Blood Attract Ants?
Menstrual fluid contains about 50% blood and the rest is other bodily secretions. For ants, it is a rich reservoir of protein along with sodium, phosphate, calcium, and loads of other salts and minerals.
Period blood is considered a waste product of the body as it contains dead tissues and other secretions. Ants love to feed on decomposing materials and hence can get attracted towards period blood.
Reasons Ants can be Attracted to Blood
1. Presence of Salts
Human blood contains loads of minerals by default. This is truer especially in the case of period blood where larger amounts of ionic salts are found.
It is the presence of these salts that makes period blood a viable food option for the ants.
Ants living in areas away from the ocean lack salt in their diet. Hence they can be quite attracted to salt-rich food items, such as blood.
2. Presence of Glucose and Protein
Blood contains glucose, amino acids, vitamins, hormones, and other materials.
It also contains lipoproteins and albumin along with other minerals that make them nutritionally very rich.
It is blood’s job to move these minerals around the body from one place to another.
All of these minerals and nutrients are attractive to ants, who also need these minerals for their own health and growth.
3. Presence of Waste Materials
Blood also carries processed waste materials so that ultimately they can be excreted out from our body via the excretory organs.
The liver metabolizes protein food items and produces ammonia that contains nitrogen. This product ultimately gets converted into urea and is carried via the bloodstream to the kidneys where they get filtered out of the blood along with other wastes and are excreted out of the body via urine.
Studies have found that ants do get attracted towards bodily waste materials owing to the presence of urea. Hence they can as well get attracted to the blood for this reason.
Blood, and particularly period blood, is full of wasteful materials that start decaying the moment it comes in contact with air.
The decomposing odor of blood can attract ants and other insects.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Are ants More Attracted Diabetic Blood?
No, ants are not more attracted to the blood of diabetics than non-diabetics.
There is a strong misconception that ants only get attracted to sugary food sources. In reality, ants are equally attracted to all kinds of nutrient sources.
Just because ants are getting attracted to the blood of a diabetic person doesn’t mean they are getting attracted owing to the high sugar levels.
So along with sugary food sources, they also get attracted to food items rich in proteins or minerals. It depends upon the need of the ant colony.
They will crave the kind of nutrition they are deficient in. For example, often in many instances, it has been found that ants residing in hilly regions prefer salty foods over sugary ones.
2. What are the Chances of Ants Being Attracted to Blood?
The chances of ants getting attracted to blood in your home is quite low. This is because normally the ants will have sufficient food available to them from other more nutrient-rich sources in the house.
Furthermore, spilt blood generally doesn’t just lie on the floor for days, whereas other sources of food are quite readily available all across the house. There will usually be more nutrient-rich foods lying around.
So, under normal household conditions they rarely get attracted to blood. However, sometimes they will find and drink blood, especially if you leave the blood samples out in the open for a long time or if the ants somehow have a deficiency in salt or protein in their diet.
3. How to Keep Ants Away from Period Blood
Using scented sanitary pads are a great and effective way to keep ants at bay. Ants do not like strong artificial scents as that toil with their scent picking up abilities.
Always make sure to wrap away sanctuary pads in a proper way may be in an airtight wrapper and keep them in a closed dustbin.
Ants can get attracted to blood as it is a rich source of nutrients. In the majority of the circumstances, you won’t see ants being attracted to blood samples, especially if they are kept tucked away in airtight dustbins.
Certain types of ants especially those that live in the wild can get attracted to blood more readily than household ants as their probability of suffering from a shortage of food is high.
Also, ants need proper amounts of salt in their diet and they often find it hard to get enough of this particular component in their diet especially if they live in places far away from the sea. In such cases, they will also be attracted to blood as it contains a suitable amount of salt.