A question about controlling ANTS

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Here's a question: what are some good ways to control ants that invade the hives.

Here in Norcal we have these tiny ants (whose name I don't know) that invade by the billions. They seem to be too small for the bees to bite, and the bees seem to give up and just huddle pretty quick once invaded.

I've tried salt on the ground around the hive as well as on the blocks and hive stands - didn't work.

I've tried grease - that lasted 3 days in the dry season - they created a pathway of dead bodies over the grease on every stand.

There are hive stands with oil containers on each leg - as soon as the spiders built webs, the ants move on thru using them.

I've resorted to spraying (which I don't like) around and on the hive stand legs. The spray is what we use around the perimeter of the house. It lasts 12 months - it can't be good.

 ... what happens in nature? ... I've seen trees with feral (I suppose) bees around. How are they dealing with it?

Any other suggestions?

The ferals are not provided with sugar water and the pollen they drop is quickly eaten in a tree by many insects, so this colonies are not so of interest to ants.

We don?t have your species here, perhaps they don?t go up the trees? Are they the ones which are called fireants?

You can try baking soda or soda powder for cleaning, mixed with powdered sugar, feed it to them but it?s a cruel death. They will carry it to the nest, the ants blow up and die. This does not poison the environement.

To be nicer you can use citrus oil or citrus peels and copper. Some ant species don?t like the smell. Combined with flooding the nests they might leave. Don?t spill sugar water at the hive and close the floor on the hive if it?s open, because the ants want the pollen dropping down.

I only have an ant problem when I feed sugar syrup, they drown by thousands in the top feeder. I have ants nests under the hives but never any ants inside. But I think they are a different kind of ants.

I'm guessing it's the Argentine Ant.

They are brutal. In the hive, they attack eggs, larvae of all stages, stores, and full grown bees. When they invade - its common to see 10-30 ants crawling on a single bee. They flood into a hive and cover everything.

As much as I hate to use it I make a perimeter of ant poison about ten feet out around my hives and gently rake it in so the dust doesn't get blown over to the hives. I only treat about once a year during the summer to keep the red bull carpenter ants at bay. Lost too many hives to ants and just go medieval on them when they appear.

Stop opening the hive and duct tape the seams when you do.  Don't drop and hive debris on the ground.


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