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Ants in my compost

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Ants in my compost

Post  mazzy on 5/30/2014, 3:46 pm

Hello,

I am in process of making my first compost using a tumble barrel type system.  I have a bunch of ants in it after the first day.  Is that unusual?

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Re: Ants in my compost

Post  steve638 on 1/4/2015, 7:58 pm

Soak the area with water. The ants will move on cause they don't like it.

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Re: Ants in my compost

Post  jimmy cee on 1/4/2015, 10:59 pm

Tumble the heck out of them, I bet they don't like that either

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Re: Ants in my compost

Post  sanderson on 1/5/2015, 12:27 am

Mazzy's back!!!!

Not the end of the world, compost wise, unless they are red ants. Some times I find Argentine ant nurseries when I turn the compost. Every adult grabbing an egg or larva and scurrying around. If the tumbler is on legs, you could lightly sprinkle DE or talc-based baby powder around the feet.

Post some updates. We miss you.

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Re: Ants in my compost

Post  Cajun Cappy on 1/5/2015, 2:27 pm

We make a goop from Vaseline, lots of cayenne pepper, cinnamon, and garlic powder make it like a greasy thick paste and smear it around legs of your tumbler also around outdoor furniture legs and stuff.  The ants will not cross it.  We have those nasty fire ants that have a very bad bite.  They hate water like said earlier so when it rains they head for high ground like planter boxes compost piles and any raised bed surfaces even container pots I even found a next in a hanging basket.  We have tried lots of remedies and are forced to poison the mounds and smear the paste on furniture  

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Re: Ants in my compost

Post  sanderson on 1/5/2015, 2:41 pm

Red Imported Fire Ants?  RIFA?  Yikes.   What a Face  You have to do what you have to do! get that pesky wabbi

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Re: Ants in my compost

Post  Cajun Cappy on 1/5/2015, 6:54 pm

I truly hate using poison and only use it on the mounds.  We have tried every thing and the only other thing that works is soak the mounds with gas wait a few minutes and then burn the gas off.  I cant do that however cause they crop up next to stuff like garden boxes and trees and such I hate to poison them but if you have ever been bitten by a fire ant you understand and know why I do. 

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Re: Ants in my compost

Post  sanderson on 1/6/2015, 1:22 am

I've seen the bites, and no thank you. Boiling water? These art castings show how intricate the colonies are.
http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=Ant+Hill+Metal+Sculpture&FORM=RESTAB

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Neem oil

Post  Windmere on 1/6/2015, 4:01 pm

Just wanted to add my two cents about preventing ants from going to somewhere they want to be (but where you DON'T want them to be)....  I rub pure neem oil on their paths.  For example, with our hummingbird feeder and for our suet cages, rubbing neem oil on their supporting wires, etc.  keeps them at bay.  This process doesn't require mixing of stuff, so it's very convenient.  Works for me every time Wink

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Re: Ants in my compost

Post  sanderson on 1/6/2015, 4:17 pm

Interesting. Thanks for the idea.

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Re: Ants in my compost

Post  yolos on 1/6/2015, 6:38 pm

@Windmere wrote:Just wanted to add my two cents about preventing ants from going to somewhere they want to be (but where you DON'T want them to be)....  I rub pure neem oil on their paths.  For example, with our hummingbird feeder and for our suet cages, rubbing neem oil on their supporting wires, etc.  keeps them at bay.  This process doesn't require mixing of stuff, so it's very convenient.  Works for me every time Wink

How long does the neem work.  Does it was off with the rain. 

We are over run with ants in my yard.  I have used poison on hills on the outside of my garden.  Then used boiling water inside a bed when it becomes empty.  If it is not empty, I try cinnamon.  It will not kill them but many times they move out of the bed.  This year I am going to try the boric acid and corn syrup recipe.

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Re: Ants in my compost

Post  Windmere on 1/6/2015, 6:52 pm

@yolos wrote:
@Windmere wrote:Just wanted to add my two cents about preventing ants from going to somewhere they want to be (but where you DON'T want them to be)....  I rub pure neem oil on their paths.  For example, with our hummingbird feeder and for our suet cages, rubbing neem oil on their supporting wires, etc.  keeps them at bay.  This process doesn't require mixing of stuff, so it's very convenient.  Works for me every time Wink

How long does the neem work.  Does it was off with the rain. 

We are over run with ants in my yard.  I have used poison on hills on the outside of my garden.  Then used boiling water inside a bed when it becomes empty.  If it is not empty, I try cinnamon.  It will not kill them but many times they move out of the bed.  This year I am going to try the boric acid and corn syrup recipe.
Well, for me, it lasts quite some time... months...  HOWEVER... our hummingbird feeder and our suet cage are under a porch or roof awning, so there is not problem with rain.  Depending on the consistency of the oil you use, I'm thinking longevity with rainy conditions might vary.  I have two kinds... one is very viscous, while the other is a bit "runny."  I use the thicker version for rubbing on wires.  The thicker one was more expensive and it stinks A LOT more.  Must be more concentrated I guess.

I actually bought some boric acid at the end of summer because of ants trying to get into our kitchen.  When a freak cold snap occurred, they went away on their own  (??).  I have the boric acid ready though!  Oddly, I found it hard to get boric acid.  The only place that had it around here was mom and pop pharmacy called Jones Pharmacy in Fayetteville.  Since you drive 85 from time to time, you pass it.

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Re: Ants in my compost

Post  yolos on 1/6/2015, 6:57 pm

I found some Boric acid in Kroger last year.  They carry it in the aisle with the eye care products for some reason.  ????  (yes, I drive by Jones Pharmacy every day).

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Re: Ants in my compost

Post  Windmere on 1/6/2015, 7:13 pm

@yolos wrote:I found some Boric acid in Kroger last year.  They carry it in the aisle with the eye care products for some reason.  ????  (yes, I drive by Jones Pharmacy every day).
Hey, you were lucky!  My Kroger pharmacist actually referred me to Jones 'cause he didn't have any.  Jones ain't cheap!  (Eye care???)

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Re: Ants in my compost

Post  jimmy cee on 1/6/2015, 10:16 pm

@yolos wrote:I found some Boric acid in Kroger last year.  They carry it in the aisle with the eye care products for some reason.  ????  (yes, I drive by Jones Pharmacy every day).
My dad had an artificial eye, when he removed it nightly it was soaked in a solution of boric acid.

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Re: Ants in my compost

Post  Turan on 1/7/2015, 12:46 pm

Just be careful with the boric acid does not build up in the growing beds.  Some plants are very sensitive to it.  I used to make a mix of boric acid and peanut butter and syrup and put it on nests.  Supposedly the workers will bring it to the queen to eat the tasty treat and the boric acid will kill her.

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Re: Ants in my compost

Post  has55 on 1/8/2015, 8:18 am

Ant - Pest Control

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Re: Ants in my compost

Post  Elizabeth on 3/23/2015, 1:56 pm

In SOCAL I doubt that you have Red Ants AKA Fire Ants.  Saturday we were working in the yard and I stepped in a Red Ant mound.  I had on flip flops.  My feet  have at least 2 dozen bites then I got bites on my hands brushing them off of my feet. 

Yesterday my feet were hurting so badly from the bites that I could not put on closed shoes.  This morning I popped the blisters with a sterile needle then treated them with peroxide, rubbing alcohol and antibiotic cream. 

I do not like using chemicals but when it comes to killing fire ants I show no mercy.  Beware - here comes the ORTHO.

FA's in my compost or garden beds present a problem.  ORTHO will kill the necessary microbes along with the ants.  I disturb the nest then douse it with boiling water.  They move to another area where I can attack them with the ORTHO.

Try boiling water.  It will at least make them move away from your compost.

Good luck

Ants are a problem on my hummingbird feeders.  I use plain petroleum jelly on the hanger.  I don't have to add anything to it.  The ants get suck and can not reach the feeder.  Same thing with the legs of patio furniture.  Adding Cayenne does not increase the effectiveness. 

Good luck

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Re: Ants in my compost

Post  Windmere on 3/23/2015, 7:24 pm

@Elizabeth wrote:In SOCAL I doubt that you have Red Ants AKA Fire Ants.  Saturday we were working in the yard and I stepped in a Red Ant mound.  I had on flip flops.  My feet  have at least 2 dozen bites then I got bites on my hands brushing them off of my feet. 

Yesterday my feet were hurting so badly from the bites that I could not put on closed shoes.  This morning I popped the blisters with a sterile needle then treated them with peroxide, rubbing alcohol and antibiotic cream. 

I do not like using chemicals but when it comes to killing fire ants I show no mercy.  Beware - here comes the ORTHO.

FA's in my compost or garden beds present a problem.  ORTHO will kill the necessary microbes along with the ants.  I disturb the nest then douse it with boiling water.  They move to another area where I can attack them with the ORTHO.

Try boiling water.  It will at least make them move away from your compost.

Good luck

Ants are a problem on my hummingbird feeders.  I use plain petroleum jelly on the hanger.  I don't have to add anything to it.  The ants get suck and can not reach the feeder.  Same thing with the legs of patio furniture.  Adding Cayenne does not increase the effectiveness. 

Good luck
Elizabeth, I rub pure neem oil on our hummingbird feeder's hanging wire and the ants stay away for quite some time.

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Re: Ants in my compost

Post  jimmy cee on 3/23/2015, 8:26 pm

You don't want to control them, repel them, kill them. All that's going to do is rebuild their reserve. You need to eliminate the colony, how to do that with fire ants may need professional help.
As in termite control, their colonies are eliminated now with the relatively new product.

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Re: Ants in my compost

Post  camprn on 3/24/2015, 8:55 am

The key to getting rid of an ant nest is to remove the queen. Turning the compost pile will certainly disrupt the nest. If the pile is kept significantly moist, it will generally be inhospitable for ants to keep a nest there.

haas, thanks for that link.

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