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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Sacramento, CA
    Posts
    30

    Default Sugar Ants Bothering

    Dear All:

    I have a small 5 frames nuc that is under relentless attack by sugar ants. They've been doing it since at least December. It also prevents me from feeding although there has been a nectar flow around. They are light in stores. How should I address this situation? Moving the nuc a few feet wouldn't probably work? Let them deal with it till they start producing more bees and eventually oppose the ants in a much greater number? Spray the ants?

    Thanks a lot.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Morro Bay, California, USA
    Posts
    859

    Default Re: Sugar Ants Bothering

    Put nuc on table-like stand. Spread "tanglefoot" goo in a band on the legs. Ants cannot cross band.

    You can also slip a plastic "election sign" sheet under nuc and spread tanglefoot on the underside where it overhangs any stand. This requires a larger quantity of tanglefoot. Petroleum jelly mixed with some dish detergent makes a homemade tanglefoot, but purchasing a tube or tub is likely more cost-effective.

    The tanglefoot requires less maintenance than the classic motor-oil in tin cans approach. The best location for a tanglefoot band is near top of the legs, tucked under the top.

    A cheapo plastic yard furniture table will support a nuc/single.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Louisville, KY
    Posts
    1,525

    Default Re: Sugar Ants Bothering

    ^^^moats. Sugar ants are of little concern here. They get into my top feeder, some try to go into the hive, but the girls easily kill them. The bigger ants especially those down south are another story.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    hinesville ga usa
    Posts
    359

    Default Re: Sugar Ants Bothering

    When I get too many sugar ants in a hive I sprinkle cinnamon around and in the hive box, even on top of the frames. Cinnamon does not kill anything and is safe for the bees, it does disrupt all the ant scent trails so they can not navigate.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Concord, CA
    Posts
    4,147

    Default Re: Sugar Ants Bothering

    You'll loose the nuc if you don't do something. In warmer weather the bees will even abscond from a nuc when bothered by the ants.
    Had 2 swarms abscond last summer when I didn't keep oil in my moats.
    Dan

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Ojai, CA, USA
    Posts
    52

    Default Re: Sugar Ants Bothering

    I have had some problems with the ants, I used cinnamon and switched over to diatomaceous earth. I mix it with the soil around the hives and surface treat heavily around it and it seems to work.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Johnson City, TN
    Posts
    380

    Default Re: Sugar Ants Bothering

    I have tried it all, cinnamon works for a week or two until it rains, grease on the legs works untill it rains a few time or get mart and make a bridge over it, diatomacis earth works untill it rains. What finally worked for me was terro, find it at lowes. Get the little plastic trays where you cut the bottom. It will seam to get worse at first they love that stuff but after they get it to the mound and the queen gets it that's all she wrote. It takes a little while to work, won't notice any difference at first. That worked for me!
    All beekeepers can agree on one thing, and that one thing is, that all beekeepers can't agree on one thing.

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