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Old 09-13-2017, 03:06 PM
 
Location: Nantahala National Forest, NC
27,091 posts, read 6,884,296 times
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Few weeks ago, discovered thousands of red ants on my stone steps, risers, patio. Of course they bit my ankles when I tried to walk...or sit. Since this is my prime bird watching spot, I broke down and ordered online the appropriate insecticide but feel bad, a little, about killing them all. They either ate or knocked off the moss I had growing on stones too, leaving a lot of just dried mud.

What else could I have done???
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Old 09-15-2017, 02:17 PM
 
Location: Upstate NY 🇺🇸
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I don't understand why you'd need validation about your decision to "kill them all." They're pests. Isn't that the point?

It's stink bug time of year around here, and DH and I just finished applying something that kills them. And I assure you I couldn't care less.
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Old 09-17-2017, 07:30 AM
 
2,020 posts, read 790,535 times
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Red ants are my mortal enemy. Kill them all.


Besides they are an invasive species
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Old 09-17-2017, 09:36 AM
 
Location: Coastal Georgia
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If these are the same thing as fire ants, there is no way you can live and let live. We use an ant killer on a few mounds, every time we mow. You have to, or they'll take over.
We keep Benedryl gel hand to treat the stings and itching.
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Old 09-17-2017, 11:09 AM
 
Location: NW Nevada
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The red ants native around here are vicious little buggers. They will take over given a chance. However, as pests go, the little black ants are far worse. The red ants don't come in the house. Not in invading hordes anyway. They are content to stay outside and out of the cupboards and off the counters. But if your working outside and not watching where you're standing, the red ants quickly become far worse than the blacks.


They both bite and sting and swarm like a cloud when disturbed. Several hundred ants that go up your jeans can land you in the hospital. They aren't fire ants. They're just a nasty species of red ant. From what I've read about actual fire ants, I'm quite glad we don't have them here. ...Yet
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Old 09-17-2017, 02:36 PM
 
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If you're in an area where this is possible, a great remedy is to find where the ants are coming from (out of the ground) and put a chicken cage (with some chickens) over it. Those ants are like steak to them. They'll get rid of them for you. No chemicals needed.
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Old 09-18-2017, 09:28 AM
 
Location: NW Nevada
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Simple Living View Post
If you're in an area where this is possible, a great remedy is to find where the ants are coming from (out of the ground) and put a chicken cage (with some chickens) over it. Those ants are like steak to them. They'll get rid of them for you. No chemicals needed.

hmmm. Yes, chickens do eat ants, scorpions, I've even seen them take out snakes. But caging the birds directly over the mound doesn't sound ...wise. The shear numbers of ants that will boil out of a disturbed mound is rather staggering. Giving the birds an off the ground roost would work somewhat, however in the end they wouldn't get the queen. Best case scenario is the mound disappears and pops up again outside the chicken cage. Worst case is someone does this without giving the birds a way to get plumb away from the nest and birds stripped to the bone are found one fine and glorious morning.


We sort of deal with the red ants as a fact of life so long as their nest is well away from our general space. Out in the pastures and such. We used to use diazanon on nests in the yard area where the ants were actually a danger. And another I remember called Die Fly that went off the market decades ago. Diazanon is gone now too. There was just no natural method of wiping out an entire nest without chemical warfare.


Die Fly was poisoned sugar. It worked better than anything I've ever seen. Less than a week and the nest would be gone. They feed the poison to the queen, which is the only way to get rid of a nest. Kill the queen. We used Die Fly in traps in the barn and corral areas. To control the flies. It worked quite well for that too. It's a product that is long gone now though. Everything that worked good is gone. I think that Diazanon was the active chemical in Die Fly but I'm not certain of that as Diazanon itself was around for a long time after Die Fly went away.


These red ant nests can go quite deep underground. 6 feet plus. And that's where the queen is. Deep. My ex swore up and down that cream of wheat killed ants. Maybe some ants, but not our NV red ants. They love it. One thing about the red ants being around is that you usually won't have issue with the black ones. They make active war on black ants. There is one other species of red ant here as well that are red at the front with a black butt. We always just called them "black bootys." The full reds make war on these as well.


Anyway, the chicken idea, use of natural predators in general, does have merit. But where ants, especially the very aggressive ones like the big reds are concerned, it won't get rid of the nest.
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Old 09-18-2017, 09:33 AM
 
4,287 posts, read 3,036,689 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gentlearts View Post
If these are the same thing as fire ants, there is no way you can live and let live. We use an ant killer on a few mounds, every time we mow. You have to, or they'll take over.
We keep Benedryl gel hand to treat the stings and itching.
^^^This. If I see them in the yard. I kill them.
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Old 09-18-2017, 10:30 AM
 
Location: Nantahala National Forest, NC
27,091 posts, read 6,884,296 times
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Of course I used insecticide as soon as possible on the fire ants. My comment about a LITTLE guilt was thinking how humans destroy any insect, animal etc they deem is annoying, etc.

I am NOT advocating not doing so, just a wistful "we think we are the only species on earth...all should be destroyed if we want"....
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Old 09-18-2017, 10:30 AM
 
Location: NW Nevada
15,136 posts, read 12,267,061 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rowan123 View Post
^^^This. If I see them in the yard. I kill them.

Fire ants are a different critter. They are an invasive species and are more than unwilling to peacefully coexist. They are evil, and must die. They are nothing like our usual red ants. They will invade homes, and there is an active state of war between them and all humans. We don't have them this far North. Not yet anyway. The Mojave Green rattler use to be way further South of here as well. We have them now. They die on sight, regardless of where I may find them.


They are easily recognized and discernable from our regular Great Basins and Diamondbacks. They are literally green. And deadly beyond any hope of redemption. They all need to die. Just like fire ants. Some critters would just not be missed should they be eradicated. Fire ants and Mojave Greens qualify. In no uncertain terms. When you think about things hard, most critters, even ones we consider insufferable pests, do have some redeeming features. Even the common house fly and disgusting parasites like leeches.


Others, just would not be missed at all. Ticks, mosquitoes, bed bugs, fleas, and Fire ants and Mojave Greens names a few. Fire ants and Mojave Greens have one thing in common. They maintain an active state of war with humans. Both will come looking for you. I've seen the Mojave Greens up close and personal. They do not even attempt to back off and slither away. They come after you. Defense is offense. Fire ants are the same way.


The ants are worse. They have numbers on their side and an 1860 Army Colt with a charge of #6 shot won't stop them. That will stop a Green. Butt cold. Curls them up like a pork rind. There are just some critters I feel no sense of any guilt removing from the ecosystem. I call them enemies. Ones with lethal intent, and I will happily kill them before they kill me or someone I care about. That includes my domestic animals.
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