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anniiee

NZBF Ants in the hive

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Hi everyone :),

 

Checked on my hive today and found hundreds of ants in the sugar syrup. I've removed the sugar syrup but now the outside of the hive is covered in them :mad:(there's no sugar syrup there I wiped the whole outside down when I'd finished). Any tips on getting rid of them?

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Bit of pulled grass on top of your hive mat. Change it every time you go into the hive. Unless they're The nasty ones.

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Hi everyone :),

 

Checked on my hive today and found hundreds of ants in the sugar syrup. I've removed the sugar syrup but now the outside of the hive is covered in them :mad:(there's no sugar syrup there I wiped the whole outside down when I'd finished). Any tips on getting rid of them?

 

The ants shouldn't be able to get in if you have the hive mat / inner cover on the top feeder, and then the tin lid sits on top of that.

Sometimes I have ants and their eggs inside the lid itself sitting on the top of the inner cover, but they are easy to brush off.

Sounds like you will need a bucket of clean water and to wipe it off, or wait for rain...

To get rid of them, don't try fly spray or an form of nuclear device.

There is a poison you can put out that they take away and the nest dies out, not sure of the name of it.

So you're left with the grass or a rain-dance.

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Ahhhhh I thought you didn't put the hive mat on with a top feeder :oops:. I'll wipe the whole thing down tomorrow and put the feeder back in with the hive mat in place, with grass on the top. For tonight I've poured boiling water over them all but the little critters keep coming back :eek:. Thank you for the advice :)

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Apparently ants don't like cinnamon, try sprinkling some powder around...But you need to use quite a bit.

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Apparently ants don't like cinnamon, try sprinkling some powder around...But you need to use quite a bit.

Works for black ants. Tried and tested for Argentine Ants, they don't take no :crap:!

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I burn the ants with the gas torch I use for lighting the smoker, then throw in some grass, but they are always there the next time I have a look.

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Interesting concept with the addition of fresh grass, does anyone know the origin of this solution? Is it the green leaf volatiles in the grass or something else?

 

Regarding a chemical bait that would not be attractive to the bees you could use xtinguish ant bait that has fipronil in it that will destroy the ant nest (they take it away and feed it through colony). Can be purchased from Flybusters Antiants - suppliers of professional DIY Pest Control products with online ordering, ecommerce and free advice, is a little expensive but perhaps share a tube between a few fellow beekeepers with similar problems.

 

It is a protein based bait so it should be bee friendly. However, as a precaution I would only put it around the hive and not in the hive and I would put it in containers that bees cannot get into, e.g., a small piece of plastic pipe with a diameter too small for a bee etc.

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Interesting concept with the addition of fresh grass, does anyone know the origin of this solution? Is it the green leaf volatiles in the grass or something else?

I believe it is the moisture. Dry grass does not work, however, leaves off green trees also work. broad leaf and needles are fine.

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Interesting if it was broadleaf trees and grass it could be a class of chemicals known as greenleaf volatiles, e.g., hexanol etc. However, if needles (pine I assume) do it as well then that somewhat throws that idea out of the window. Looks like we need a bit more testing :-)

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However, if needles (pine I assume)

No. It was conifer frons, Not strictly needles but still softwood. Leaves were from Coprosma.

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No. It was conifer frons, Not strictly needles but still softwood. Leaves were from Coprosma.

Casuarina works too, but they are not everywhere like a handful of gras! (y)

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I wonder if handfuls of fresh thyme would work & keep the varroa down as well.

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I wonder if handfuls of fresh thyme would work & keep the varroa down as well.

Varroa is generally not on top of the hive mat where the grass etc goes.

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So far neither grass nor cinnamon has worked the hive stand and the hive have a constant stream of them I'm just hoping they aren't inside on the frames :(

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So far neither grass nor cinnamon has worked the hive stand and the hive have a constant stream of them I'm just hoping they aren't inside on the frames :(

Try Lavender oil, under the lid on the hive mat but also on the stand.

What colour are these ants?

 

If all fails you have to move the colony away for a while and use ant bait with fipronil!

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Thank you, I'll try the lavender oil tonight. I'm also going to wash the stand and the hive with vinegar and water to try and remove their trail, fingers crossed :)

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Just an update took just the lid off the hive last night as too damp to open the whole thing up and was horrified. The sugar syrup was all gone and the bottom of the feeder thick with ants. They were both under and on top of the hive mat and the inside of the lid was thick with them. They are crawling in-between the super and the feeder box also between the base and the super :mad:. It was too cold to do anything last night so I'm going at it with everything I can this weekend. Going to take the feeder off and put boiling water on the ants, then wash everything that I can. I'm buying some ant bait and going to put it down in containers with very small holes in it. Also going to put lavender oil everywhere. What do you think to putting tape between the super and the base /feeder box? I have a screened base so that would still provide ventilation?

Many thanks

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Hi Everyone :),

 

Thank you so much for all your advice. I'm happy to say I think my ant problem is finally under control ! We washed them all off with hot water, I bought some general grease from Bunnings and we smeared tons of the stuff around all the hive legs. I then sprinkled lavender oil on top of the super and on top of the feeder box. Then topped the hive mat with fresh grass and more lavender oil. Checked the hive earlier today and no ants :D.

 

Once again a big Thank you (y)

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Well done. They will be back. Every time you check put new fresh grass on top.

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