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Thread: New Pest

  1. #1
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    Default New Pest

    Well it seems we have we have a new pest at least it's new to me. According to the newletters that I get from MS beekeeper assoc. they mentioned a new pest problem showing up in Florida- Argentine ants and they are invading bee colonies, raiding them and destroying them. Argentine ants can be found in most areas of MS. These ants are from Brazil. They are hard to control. Argentine ants nest are usually located in the top 12" of soil, usually in well drained soil and under wooden objects, building, walkways and in decaying plant material. Nests are inconspicuous. There is not a mound of soil as with fire ants. Foraging ants prefer sweets such as honey and can be very persistant getting it. Once a hive has been discovered, it is nearly impossible to maintain because the ants persistantly return. They out compete native ants for food and eventually become the dominant ants in the area.
    Last edited by Ted n Ms; 04-11-2009 at 08:27 PM. Reason: sp
    Don't think you are on the right road simply because it is a well worn pathway.

  2. #2
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    Worcester County, MA
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    Goody goody. Another invasive pest.

    I hope that they are not cold tolerant. Weather seems to help keep some pests at bay for beeks of the Northeastern and Canadian variety. Any ideas if these are fair weather friends, or will I need to worry in a few years?
    This space intentionally left blank.

  3. #3
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    Don't know.... just wait and see.
    Don't think you are on the right road simply because it is a well worn pathway.

  4. #4
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    Talcum powder sprinkled near hives is known to repel this ant but does not kill them. In areas where practical, a mixture of 1/4 teaspoon of boric acid powder, 3 Tablespoons of water and 1 Tablespoon of sugar, all dissolved in the hot water will kill the ants. The pesticide Dominion 2L will also take care of them in areas where pesticides may be used.

  5. #5
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    Default Argentine ants

    Here on the West coast we have these. They have been described as a super organism in that as they throw new queens they also maintain support lines. In Southern California after the aphids dry up the argentine ants will totally drive out the population of strong colonies. It's a bit of a problem in certain areas.

  6. #6
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    Corryton, Tennessee, USA
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    Seems like an oil-can under each leg of a hive stand would solve this problem, unless they can fly too.

  7. #7
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    Seattle, WA, USA
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    Quote Originally Posted by SgtMaj View Post
    Seems like an oil-can under each leg of a hive stand would solve this problem, unless they can fly too.
    Yep, I was thinking the same thing, though ants are not a big problem up here in Washington State. There are two commercially available verions I've seen:
    http://saulcreekapiary.com/Hive%20Stand.htm
    https://www.dadant.com/catalog/produ...roducts_id=821

    -Reid

  8. #8
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    College Station, Texas
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    ted writes:
    Argentine ants and they are invading bee colonies, raiding them and destroying them. Argentine ants can be found in most areas of MS. These ants are from Brazil.

    tecumseh:
    are these related to the fire ants (which I seem to recall is also from south american)?

    an excellent bioliogial control is to knock off the top crust of an existing mound in a cold drizzling rain in January. this will not exterminate the ants(collectively), but it will definitely limit their numbers and expansion.

  9. #9
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    The Argentine ant is a different ant than the fire ant. They are sometimes referred to as "crazy ants" because they do not forage in a line but seem to forage in a sparse but wide swath of ants moving in all directions. We have them in the Houston area, but I have not seen many yet. I have read that they are also a natural enemy of the fire ants and will prevail in a battle between the two. Not so sure that is a good thing. I did a cutout once where I had to remove a small portion of a roof to gain access to the bees. When we were packing up to leave, Argentine ants were invading the roof where we had dripped honey, it really looked "crazy" the way they were moving, there was about a 2 foot wide swath of ants zig zagging back and forth, however, the general direction of the swath worked upward toward the area with the honey.
    "The UNKNOWN, huh? That would be SNORBERT ZANGOX over in Waycross."

  10. #10
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    Statesboro, Georgia, USA
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    Could someone please describe an Argentine ant for me? Maybe several someones to make sure we are talking about the same pest. Thanks very much.

    Charles

  11. #11
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    Starkville,Ms,USA
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    I have read that they are also a natural enemy of the fire ants and will prevail in a battle between the two.
    Really? I have read just the opposite. That is the fire ant prevails. And I would have to believe that because in spite of the fact that the argentine ant has been in the south for decades it has not displaced the fire ants. Not even close.

    "Because the fire ant is such a strong competitor to the Argentine ant they are not as populated in the south east part of the United States."

    http://doyourownpestcontrol.com/arg.htm

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr.Wax View Post
    Really? I have read just the opposite. That is the fire ant prevails. And I would have to believe that because in spite of the fact that the argentine ant has been in the south for decades it has not displaced the fire ants. Not even close.

    "Because the fire ant is such a strong competitor to the Argentine ant they are not as populated in the south east part of the United States."

    http://doyourownpestcontrol.com/arg.htm
    My bad, the "crazy" ants (Rasberry crazy ant, Paratrechina sp.) to which I was referring are actually a different species than the Argentine ants. Apparently I was confusing the Argentine ants with this new species (as yet to be fully classified) of "crazy" ants that are displacing the fire ants (http://urbanentomology.tamu.edu/ants/exotic_tx.cfm). If you go to this link, there is link to a video of them foraging, they move very quickly, it almost looks like the video is sped up, but it is not. I have seen these ants forage and they really do move that fast.
    Last edited by Gene Weitzel; 05-11-2009 at 12:52 PM.
    "The UNKNOWN, huh? That would be SNORBERT ZANGOX over in Waycross."

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Salem, Oregon
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    947

    Big Grin Skunks to the rescue!

    Maybe its time to stop shooting and trapping skunks.
    They just love digging up ant and wasp nests.
    I have exactly ONE hive more than you.
    That makes my opinion beyond question.

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