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Author Topic: ants in the hives!!  (Read 12296 times)
justgojumpit
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« on: April 18, 2004, 11:10:48 PM »

I have three hives ready for bees to move in on the 8th of may. problem is keeping the carpenter ants from moving in. i sprayed a ring on the cinder blocks that the hives sit on with ant and roach killer, but they didnt care. they still set up shop in one of my hives. (two are used, the third hive is new, so has no honey or sugar residues on it) i smoked the heck out of this hive and killed the ants, and then torched the cracks where eggs were by pumping the smoker till flames came out the end and used this as a blow torch. then i closed up the hive, except for the outer cover, and puffed mad amounts of smoke in there, to hide the smell of the sugar and honey inside. this deterred the bees, but they then set up shop next door. i repeated the whole ensemble for this hive, and then smoked the heck out of the third hive as well, before the ants would take a liking to this one as well. what do you all do to keep ants out of your hives? we'll see if the smoke works to mask the smells of food from the ants. i plan to air out the hives well before the bees come. is this all that would be needed, or will the bees now no longer want to live in these hives? should have thought of this sooner
oh, by the way, the frames with comb were not smoked with the hives, but were brought inside into a cold cellar, where they are stacked so the air can get at them. i have not seen a bug in this cellar for years, so i think the combs will be fine for a few weeks till the bees come, but i will check on them just to make sure.

sorry the post is so long. those of you who got this far, thank you! and those who reply, i thank you all the more!!

justgojumpit
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justgojumpit
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« Reply #1 on: April 19, 2004, 04:06:25 PM »

the ants are back!

any ideas anyone?

thanks,

justgojumpit
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Anonymous
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« Reply #2 on: April 19, 2004, 05:32:03 PM »

build a hive stand, and make the legs out of 4x4's.  Place each of the 4 4x4 legs into a large coffee can, or something like it and fill it up with oil.  This will keep the ants from being able to climb into the hive, and it won't bother the bees.

Chris
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« Reply #3 on: April 19, 2004, 07:03:55 PM »

Justgojumpit

Sounds like you've done everything except Tacticle Nucs or hand granades on this hive. The tin cans under the four legs (as seen in Beekeeping for dummies) is something I have never tried and the only issue I have is that if you get hard rains, the cans can fill with water and the oil over-flow.

A modified version where the leggs are recessed under the hive body many inches may do a better job of protecting the cans from rain, but make the hive unstable.

Ants are indeed a problem, especially if they have gotten to the egg laying stage in your hive boxes - I can't believe how large the eggs are from these ants.

I would definitely stay away from any insect spray though, carry-over into the hive isn't good for the bees or humans.

I'm lucky, we have a small bluish green bird that loves picking off ants and workers walking away from my hives - there are a few of these birds and they know when to come and they feed all day when the ants are around.

I suggest though, getting ANT CONTROL TRAPS that sterilize the males and they bring the chemicals home with them and it sterilizes their too - you could stick these hormone attractant traps under the hives where the ants will get a whiff of them as they climb the hive boxes. Raid puts out one for sure - 2 or three of these under each hive box NEAR THE ENTRANCE but under the bottom board MAY just handle your problems in the long term.

Otherwise, I don't know what you can do - they are pests and drive us all nuts.

John
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SeanChan
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« Reply #4 on: April 19, 2004, 07:39:52 PM »

To prevent overflow due to rain just make a one cm hole near the top of the coffee tins, insert a similar diameter L shaped stiff plastic tube into the hole with the L end inside and facing down. Make sure your oil can contains water with oil floating on top and the L reach below the oil to water. Now when it rains, water will sink and flow out till the level of the inner end of the L plastic tubing. The longer the down facing limb of the L the more oil can remain on top of the water. Cheesy

SeanChan From Malaysia, Where ants are everywhere through the year.
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wanabee
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« Reply #5 on: April 19, 2004, 10:18:55 PM »

in my expierence with ants they always end up on top of the inner cover and lay eggs. I just brush them off with a bee brush. I also put those little ant traps around my hives. some people say bay leaves on top of the inner cover help because of the tannic acid in the leaves. In your situation of having no bees in the hive i would just not leave the frames in. before you get your bees just brush the hives out. i think once there are bees in there it won't bee as much of a problem
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justgojumpit
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« Reply #6 on: April 20, 2004, 01:07:58 PM »

thanks everyone,

i have already taken the frames out of the hives because they are a food source for the ants.  they come from hives that didnt make it through the winter, so some frames still have some honey left in them.  they are now in a cold cellar waiting for the bees to come home.
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Anonymous
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« Reply #7 on: April 20, 2004, 08:39:23 PM »

I would place an entrance reducer in that blocks the entrance then place some mint in the hive that the ants don't care for. You could also place the hive boxes in a large trash bag and seal it up since they ae empty any WHOO.
 Cheesy Al
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justgojumpit
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« Reply #8 on: April 25, 2004, 03:39:28 PM »

mint... sounds good.  that stuff grows like a weed here!  will do thanks,

justgojumpit
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Anonymous
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« Reply #9 on: May 05, 2004, 10:38:37 PM »

Would putting out andro or some other type of granule ant poison around hive bee harmful to the bees?
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justgojumpit
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« Reply #10 on: May 05, 2004, 10:58:32 PM »

seeing as how they are closely related, i would be worried to try that.  thanks for the input though Smiley
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BigRog
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« Reply #11 on: May 05, 2004, 11:13:51 PM »

Used to work for a defense contractor - Sperry.
We had teflon. It was a white plastic like material. I wonder if this would work. Get sheet material  and wrap the legs of your stand. I don't think that they could get a grip on it. I was working on a "G" job. I couldn't find a glue that would work on it. Had to be mechanically fastened.

Here's a link
https://secure5.nexternal.com/shared/StoreFront/default.asp?CS=plastiweb&BusType=BtoC&Count1=355205714&Count2=272346138
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Anonymous
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« Reply #12 on: May 06, 2004, 09:55:32 AM »

You know, I've heard of painting the legs with oil (which didn't help me much) but if you're doing the cans-around-the-legs trick, do you even have to use oil?  Water seems like it would be good enough for that.
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BigRog
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« Reply #13 on: May 11, 2004, 01:07:30 AM »

I used to do stained glass and used a copper foil to solder the glass together. It is a tape 7/32" wide with a strong adhesive on the back.
you can get it at any stained glass supply. see it here. You get about 100 ft for $3-$4
http://www.delphiglass.com/index.cfm?page=itemView&itemsysid=126680&ViewCAT=1672&startRow=1&returnTo=itemList

put a double row around each leg or around the platform about 1/16" apart solder leads to it. run the leads to a nine volt bat. Should be enough to repel the ants, no chemicals, no oil spills. I imagine that you could use a power supply of 9v or 12v. No current will be used until the ants hit both pieces of foil

(As far as the voltage, have you ever "Tounge Tested" a 9v battery)
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mark
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« Reply #14 on: June 14, 2004, 05:31:44 PM »

saw in one of the supply cataloges ant barrier legs.  basically a small block with a disc on top and bottom.  apply barrier of vaseline or grease around the block and use them under the hive.
ants won't cross the grease.  i think we're all handy enough to.........
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« Reply #15 on: June 14, 2004, 07:47:57 PM »

Bag them in garbage bags until your bees arrive.  That is how I store my sugar cake boards during the summer to keep the ants off them.

Jason -  Water in the cans evaporates too quickly and becomes a pain if you have to keep filling them.  I also could never get the bees from not drowning in them.  If you put anything in to prevent the bees from drowning, the ants would use it as a bridge.  If you didn't put anything in, the ants would use the dead bees as a bridge Sad

A few ants here and there aren't a problem,  the bees keep them in check, so unless you have a really strong/overpowering ant colony or a weak hive, I would just let nature do its thing.

When I've had to deal with them, I use the following:
Melt 1/4 pound of candle wax not beeswax,stir in 1/4 cup sugar and 4 ounces boric acid.  Pour into a shallow pan and let harden.  Break in pieces and put out for the ants. When I use it, I put it between the bottom board screen and the filler tray, this way the bees can't get to it, but the ants can.

Another thing I have heard of, but don't know it's effectiveness, is raw grits.  Supposedly the ants eat it, and then it swells so much, it kills them.
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Beth Kirkley
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« Reply #16 on: June 14, 2004, 09:03:50 PM »

Years ago I used to use dried mint & tansy in my cupboards and drawers to keep out ants and mice. It did works too. I know atleast on the mice. I didn't have an ant problem, but I had a big mouse problem. After putting this around (in just little mayo lids, but panty-hose would probably work too), I saw no more mice or droppings.

Beth
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Bee Boy
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« Reply #17 on: June 14, 2004, 11:03:48 PM »

Ugh! I      ants! They crawl up to my hive top feeder ans steal syrup. Lots of them drown and by time its time to fill up the feeder there this digusting green mold growing all over the decaying ants. Thank goodness I almost done feeding my bees!
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Bee Boy
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« Reply #18 on: June 15, 2004, 10:42:59 PM »

I have found this mixture to be very effective in eradicating the ant population around our place...

Mix a quarter cup of sugar, 1 teaspoon of boric acid and 6 ounces of water in a glass screw top jar. Shake thoroughly until you can see that all the sugar crystals are dissolved. Now put a portion of this mixture into a smaller jar which you have filled halfway with cotton balls. Firmly screw the lid back on, and punch a few small holes in the center of the lid. Put this near the entrance of the nest or underneath your hive. The key is the ants will get into the jar to eat the sugar and return to the nest and pass the boric acid on to the rest of the colony. If you find many dead ants by the jar dilute the solution with more sugar and water and try again. With a proper mixture the colony may be destroyed in a few weeks. It does take the destruction of the queen to completely eradicate a colony.
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« Reply #19 on: June 15, 2004, 10:53:30 PM »

Oops.. I thought I was already logged in.
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