49AK 55M
1073 posts
6/28/2006 11:52 pm

Last Read:
7/1/2006 7:08 pm


I lived in California for a while, and the house I lived in was built about 1950. Nothing in California is very well insulated or sealed, and as a result, it is not unusual to see an ant or two crawling around the house.

Ants are kinda interesting in their behaviors. They create trails and follow one behind the other, completely on autopilot. When they come face to face with another ant, they seem to take a minute to groom each other's antennae, ("Hello, how ya doing, are you my sister?" in antspeak) and head off to wherever they're headed.

The entertainment wears off when day after day you encounter swarms of them in your kitchen. This poses a problem, because nobody wants to use something noxious to get rid of them, since what kills ants isn't particularly good for you, either. You can keep the swarms down by being meticulously clean, and making sure that any spills of sugar or fat are cleaned up, but once the ants are around, it is difficult to get rid of them, short of 'dropping the bomb' on them.

One day I was doing something, and I left something on the counter of the kitchen -- I don't remember what it was, but it might have been some unripe fruit. I went away for about an hour, and when I came back, the ants were swarming all over the counter... There were probably ten times more ants than I had ever seen in that setting before. While I was sad to lose my fruit, it was totally fascinating to watch them work. Ultimately I took care of the mess, and scrubbed down all the counters, my fascination now having worn thin.

I had never seen a swarm like that before... but if I had been paying closer attention, I might have been able to predict it.

Live and learn...

red_hot_trucker 58F

6/29/2006 12:37 am

Ah yes, 'tis that wonderful time of year again, isn't it? For us Nevadan's it's the triple temperatures, the threat of a storm, lingering for several days which only produces humididty rather than precipitation, allergies, and the lovely ants. Ants, ants, ants, ants.

I got back from a month long trip the other day, and immediately commenced to my twelve pack of Corrona and chicken, falling asleep rather early. When I awoke, found I had forgotten to take the bones to the kitchen, and had more ants than a normal households share of. Somewhere in the world someone was having a peaceful picnic, I'm sure.

On my shopping list today are the ant traps, which I have found work quite nicely. I just have to place them in places where my dogs can't get to them, as I have already had that scare, with the frantic call to the poison control hotline.

Good luck in your efforts to keep them at bay.

[post 1785076]

49AK replies on 6/29/2006 7:59 am:
Have you tried boric acid? I don't have the recipe, but you dissolve boric acid in water, along with sugar, and it takes care of them. You can get boric acid at a pharmacy, and it is pretty benign stuff. the ants take it to their nest and share it, and it kills them off. The ant traps often have something a little more poisonous in it.

You can find the recipe online.

rm_PurryKitty2 48M/50F
9753 posts
6/29/2006 8:18 am

They give me the creeps and I squash any that I see. My mom used to call the small ants "Pussy Ants". Ever hear of that term? STRANGE!

Purry {=}


6tigress9 45F
2 posts
6/30/2006 8:10 am

One thing interesting about ants is that they almost always take the same path time and time again, but their senses are very senstive. My Grandma always used pine needles and cinnamon in their path and it always worked for her.

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