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Re: Ants, Ants Everywhere!

  • Subject: Re: [cg] Ants, Ants Everywhere!
  • From: "Deborah Mills" deborah@greencure.org
  • Date: Sun, 29 Sep 2002 23:29:14 -0700

Walter,
Most likely the ant problem you are having is from the Argentine ant. Check
out the following link of fliers ( www.wasteless.org/IPM.html#FLYER ) that I
wrote for the County of Ventura's Environmental and Energy Resource
Department (formerly Waster Management) as a part of the "Our Water our
World" IPM less-toxic nursery program I am working on as a consultant.

A little history on the Argentine ant. Of course it is not native and was
brought over 1860 on the coffee ships from Argentina. The thing with this
species of ant is that each colony happily lives together, creating a super
colony verses how most ants protect and defend their colonies against
intruders. It is going to be next to impossible to get "rid" of them but
maybe you can co-exist somehow. Even by implementing a chemical spray
program, it will only "knock down" the population and not rid you of your
problem. If you do anything, I would recommend the grant ant stakes. Even
though they contain arsenic, the amount is very small (remember, it is the
dose that makes the posion) and since they are self-contained in a metal
container, children and pets would have a hard time getting into them.

My first question to you is: Do you have a aphid problem? If so, this can be
contributing to the problem. Also, do you have a lot of mulch (like wood
chips etc.) in these areas? If so, ants love the environment of mulch and
populations can become greater. My final and last question: Where at in
California are you?

One suggestion for your compost pile is: When it comes to compost, most
likely it is not being turned enough and it is drying out in areas. I have
found by keeping it really moist coupled with movement of the pile, ants
will vacant the area.

Hope this helps,
Deborah Mills
Green Cure, Inc.




> Help!
>
> We have ants in the compost, ants on the tomatoes,
> ants on the corn, the zinnias, sunflowers and about
> everywhere else it seems.  Is there a safe way to get
> rid of these pests without resorting to a
> comprehensive pesticide spray application?  Trying to
> keep away from this, if possible.
>
> Walter,
> Zone 10 (Southern California)
>
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