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Thread: Ant questions.

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Accord, NY
    Posts
    333

    Default Ant questions.

    I need a big time primer on this issue. How do ants bother bees? I really don't know. I have a sort of an inner cover on a couple of top bar hives and often I have ants building on these. I just shake them off when I check on the bees and they start rebuilding right away. Do they get in the hive? Do they steal honey? Kill or bother bees? Formic acid smell? Other? ...???

    I have not seen ants getting in the hive, mostly they stick to the outside. Since I don't treat for mites I was hoping the formic acid left by ants might even help somewhat. (But that might be just superstition and wishful thinking on my part.)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,423

    Default

    >How do ants bother bees?

    Usually they don't. You just find them in tight spots between inner covers and covers, etc.

    > I really don't know. I have a sort of an inner cover on a couple of top bar hives and often I have ants building on these. I just shake them off when I check on the bees and they start rebuilding right away.

    What do you mean by "building"? What are they building?

    > Do they get in the hive? Do they steal honey? Kill or bother bees? Formic acid smell? Other? ...???

    They don't bother me or my bees. People with fire ants sometimes havea problem.

    >I have not seen ants getting in the hive

    Then you don't have an ant problem.

    >, mostly they stick to the outside. Since I don't treat for mites I was hoping the formic acid left by ants might even help somewhat.

    Doubtful at best. The ants are more likely to attack the mites than the formic acid...
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Accord, NY
    Posts
    333

    Default

    Thank you Michael.

    >What do you mean by "building"? What are they building?

    I'm not sure. An anthill I suppose. They carry leaf litter up between the roof and the "inner cover". I wipe it off when I check on the bees, they do it again...
    I think I will not worry for now. I've heard of bees possibly absconding because of being bothered by ants but I don't see much interaction at my hive.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,423

    Default

    I do just what you did. Dump them off when they are in my way and ignore them otherwise.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Ennis, TX USA
    Posts
    5,124

    Default

    I just started putting vaseline around the legs about 2" tall and 6" off the ground and I put cinnamon above and below that. I have two hives. On my two hives. One has huge fire ant mounds under it. And the other had carperter ants. I have had no problems with the fire ants yet. The carpenter ants are more curious. But the vaseline and cinnamon seem to keep them at bay.

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