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The active ingredient Abamectin, found in many popular pesticides including Advance 375A Select Granular Ant Bait and Advance Carpenter Ant Bait, is a mixture of nerve poisons known as avermectins. These poisons work to control ant and insect populations by affecting the central nervous system and causing insect paralysis, which leads to death. However, abamectin is a delayed-action insecticide, so it does not kill immediately. The benefit of delayed-action insecticides as compared to those that kill instantly is that the poisoned insect is allowed time to travel back to the colony and spread the poison to other insects either through contact or food sharing (ingestion).
Abamectin is classified as a General Use Pesticide (GUP), meaning that it is unlikely to harm the environment as long as you follow the directions on the label. Anyone can safely use a GUP, not just the pros. Abamectin is also classified as a class IV toxin on a scale of I to IV, where I is highly toxic and IV is practically nontoxic.
To maximize the use of ant baits containing abamectin, use with a gel bait such as Maxforce Carpenter Ant Bait Gel or a liquid bait such as Termidor SC.