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This time of year is a problem for me with ants in my area. I end up with the little brown ants raising their own brood on top of my inner covers and they rob from the hives - which really ticks off the bees. I even had a hive abscond once that had propolized EVERTHING trying to keep them out but just gave up.
I use cinnamon around the stand legs, that helps, but looking for other tips. I have found that the cinnamon works better than water wells, stuff keeps getting blown in the water, bridging the gap.

Do migratory lids help this situation because you dispense with the inner cover leaving no convient space for the ants? I have heard of boric acid and jelly in jars under the hives, is that a long term plan that reduces the ant population in the area? Would cinnamon on top of the inner cover around the edge bother the bees?

JC
 

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Charlie B's hive stand discussion may be found here. I'm trying a variant of it.

http://www.beesource.com/forums/showthread.php?271115-My-Ant-Proof-Hive-Stand-Actually-Works

In a discussion last week, Michael Bush recommended borax and grape jelly. I've used boric acid and borate wood treatments on other pests. If you keep these covered so bees can't reach them, they're probably better than putting down something like diazanon, and not as likely to harm pets. But according to Mr. Bush, they'll take it back to their nest, which is in your beehive. That probably is not a serious contamination problem, but they might drop a little along the way.

If you don't have a spare inner cover, I'd bet you could take it off and hit it with a blast of scalding hot water, and that would pretty much be the end of that. Their colonies work much like bees, so if you kill their queen and brood, any remaining foragers will be doomed.
 

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Their colonies work much like bees, so if you kill their queen and brood, any remaining foragers will be doomed.
I always find the little black ants between my inner and outer covers…at this time of the year. It's warm up there, and I have all the escape holes taped closed for winter. As soon as I open the hole, the ants disappear.

In all the years I've observed these ants, I've never seen a queen….at least with this species. I believe the bees are carrying their eggs up the hive and incubating them on the warm inner cover. Of the thousands and thousands of these galleries I've seen…I've never seen the queen.

Now the large ants are a different story. I find them between the covers on a number of hives in the same area of the apiary. Each group/hive seems to have a different purpose. Some are brood galleries, and in those I have seen a queen and her brood. But there are also what I call butcheries. The space is full of dismembered bees and the ants. It's as if the ants carry the bees to the butchery to cut them up for dinner.
 

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An unexpected side effect of my IPM bottom boards (they have oil pans under the screening) is that they kill ants by the thousands. Every week or so I have to strain the mineral oil to keep up with the dead ants. I assume the ants walk thru the front door of the hive and fall thru the screening, tho I've never actually seen it happen. I just keep finding all the dead ants in my oil pans. I never see an ant inside the hive or even on the outside, but I sure find the deadies.


My IPM bottom boards


HTH

Rusty
 

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I just use cheap liquid dish detergent.Just squirt all around the legs and if it rains it run to the ground also further deterring them.Reapply as needed and you don't have the pollution issue if you use biodegradeable.Works for me,doesn't matter what type of ants either.Don't have to carry anything other than a squirt bottle of dish soap.
 

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I have an ant problem too. They seem to be hanging out near the inner cover. I would like to try cinnamon. Just sprinkle cinnamon on top of the inner cover?
 

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We had ants between the inner and outer cover and cinnamon worked great. Just buy the cheapest ground cinnamon you can find and put a generous amount on top of the inner cover.
 

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I have an ant problem too. They seem to be hanging out near the inner cover. I would like to try cinnamon. Just sprinkle cinnamon on top of the inner cover?
Yes that will work.I seen it on one of Fatbeeman vid,
I had a hive die out,with plenty of store left.It was full of ants,Pour some cinnamon in the hive.When I went back there was not one ant to be found.Mark,,,,,
 

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Cinnamon does work but you have to stop them from getting up there too.Yes you can sprinkle it around the hive stand legs.Wind and rain it will not be so cheap after awhile.I haven't tried mixing cinnamon with the soap.Hmmmmm I'll have to try that!Might eliminate the wind factor.:scratch:
 

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Doesn't seem to work with fire ants here. I'm trying cans with water that seems to be working so far this year. Hive stands are metal with the legs in the cans. Every couple of days I add water if it hasn't rained. Fire ants are a real pain (literally) when I have feeders on new swarms and splits. There will be a line of ants going up the side or corner of the hive to the feeder and lots of drowned ants in the syrup.
 

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>Do migratory lids help this situation because you dispense with the inner cover leaving no convient space for the ants?

Yes.

> I have heard of boric acid and jelly in jars under the hives, is that a long term plan that reduces the ant population in the area?

Yes.

> Would cinnamon on top of the inner cover around the edge bother the bees?

No.

I see them all the time (those little ones with their larvae) and they have never caused an issue. The bees aren't happen when a bunch run into the hive... but I've never seen a hive perish because of them.
 
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