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Ants and how to get rid of them

Discussion in 'Aldabra tortoises' started by popeye tortoise, May 15, 2017.

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  1. popeye tortoise

    popeye tortoise Well-Known Member

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    Aldabraman,
    I just notice I have ants in my indoor pen. What is the safest and best way to get rid of them. Groot is doing great and I do not want to disrupt his indoor pen if I don't have to.
    Thanks, Popeye tortoise.
  2. Tom

    Tom The Dog Trainer 5 Year Member Platinum Tortoise Club

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    I'm not Aldabraman, but I've spent a fair amount of time fighting ants.

    The answer to this question will vary with location and species of any. Indoors, I've had great luck with Terro Ant Baits. They are made from sugar water and boric acid, so very non-toxic to people and pets.
  3. deadheadvet

    deadheadvet Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    diatomaceous earth works well. Very safe if ingested. I usually pour the dirt around the mound. The ants walk through it, ingest it and it kills them. Other thing safe to do is Club soda right down into the mound. The C02 kills the queen and that works as well.
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  4. wellington

    wellington Well-Known Member Moderator 5 Year Member Tortoise Club

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    If they are just regular little ants, don't bother doing anything if you don't want too. I have them in my shed and the only thing they bother with is the tort food. Never found one on my torts. I get them all winter, nice warm shed for them, ugh. I try to get rid of as many as possible in the summer when the torts are no longer staying in the shed, but I know come fall/winter they will be back
  5. wellington

    wellington Well-Known Member Moderator 5 Year Member Tortoise Club

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    Btw, if you want to alert some one to your thread, you have to do it like this.
    @ALDABRAMAN
    Putting the @ sign first and then start spelling their name and a little box will pop up showing all the names with the beginning letters you typed and you click on the name you want
  6. MPRC

    MPRC Well-Known Member

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    +1 on the Terro baits, they work like a charm, just put them out of reach of your torts.
  7. MangoKing

    MangoKing New Member

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    diatomaceous earth is my go to for ants. It is for most any type of insect control. diatomaceous earth is a super fine crushed fossil that is very jagged. When insects get in on themselves it causes micro wounds causing the insect to dehydrate to death. Being a super fine, jagged powder it is not good for anything to breath. I use it for ants by finding their path into my house and leaving a small pile blocking it. Ants will not go near it. At work we offer a program where we will put a small line all the way around your foundation outside your house and it slows insects from entering. I would not personally use it inside a closed chamber with a tortoise in it. I would follow the ants path and block it before they enter the enclosure. diatomaceous earth almost always added to grains to combat mealy moths and the like and humans and our live stock eat it every day.

    boric acid and sugar water also works for ants. I dont know the brand mentioned in this thread but have seen it used.
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  8. wellington

    wellington Well-Known Member Moderator 5 Year Member Tortoise Club

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    Be sure it's the food grade diatomaceous earth.
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  9. tortoiseplanet

    tortoiseplanet Active Member

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    Don't use any products and don't buy ANYTHING to remove ants! The ants aren't entering your pen for no reason, they found a food source. You may have food that is in the pen that they are after. Clean the pen out and remove any food debris and remember to not leave food in overnight, just put enough that your tortoise could eat in a reasonable time.
  10. Tom

    Tom The Dog Trainer 5 Year Member Platinum Tortoise Club

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    What if the tortoise is the food source for the ants?
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  11. popeye tortoise

    popeye tortoise Well-Known Member

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    Thank you all for your input. Tom where do I get the Terro ant bait? It sounds safe and do you spread it thru the mulch? Again thanks to you all.
  12. Tom

    Tom The Dog Trainer 5 Year Member Platinum Tortoise Club

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    I've seen them at Home Depot, Lowes and Walmart. I'll bet you can get them through Amazon too.

    They are little plastic trays. You cut the one end off and set them where the ants will find them. The challenging part is to then NOT disturb the ants. Let them swarm the bait and carry it back to the queen and the rest of the colony. You might see a ton of ants for a day or two, and then… nothing.

    It drove my wife nuts seeing all those ants on her counter, but they literally drained the bait and then disappeared.
  13. MPRC

    MPRC Well-Known Member

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    That is the hardest part for me as well! I just want to destroy the swarm.
  14. Tom

    Tom The Dog Trainer 5 Year Member Platinum Tortoise Club

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    Its a challenge.

    In our case the ants were in the walls and under ground. You could spray all sorts of toxic pesticides all over the house, ground and foundation of the house, and it did nothing because the ants didn't come into contact with it. We had to let the worker ants take the bait back to the colony and queen that were hidden in areas that we could not reach.
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  15. popeye tortoise

    popeye tortoise Well-Known Member

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    Thank you, Tom I will let you know how I make out. Again thanks to all the support on this forum.
  16. tortoiseplanet

    tortoiseplanet Active Member

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    If the tortoise is the food source for the ants that means your tortoise is dead and they are eating its flesh for protein. Which is not the case. Clean your tortoise at least once to twice a week to remove food residue on his body. If the ants are also feeding on food scraps in the enclosure clean it out too.
  17. ALDABRAMAN

    ALDABRAMAN KEEPER AT HEART 5 Year Member

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  18. Tom

    Tom The Dog Trainer 5 Year Member Platinum Tortoise Club

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    No. The tortoise may be the food source the ants are seeking. It is obvious that you have not had to deal with what some other people in some other parts of the country have had to deal with. Some ant species in some areas will invade no matter how meticulously clean an enclosure is kept. Even without a food source, it is a good living space for them. A live tortoise is something they can eat, and some species will invade and over power a live tortoise that is confined to an enclosure.

    You know not, that which you speak of, and your advice in this thread could lead to disaster for someone. I'm not intending to insult you here, but people reading need to know that ants can be a serious and deadly threat to their tortoises, and it doesn't matter how clean or dirty the enclosure is kept.
  19. popeye tortoise

    popeye tortoise Well-Known Member

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    Tom, thank you for your support. I am a very proud keeper and I take proper care of my tortoises. I am not a newbie to the tortoise game. I been raising tortoises for many years. I was very bless to come across this forum a few years ago and it has made me a better keeper. Thank you again. Aldabraman how is the grits used?
  20. tortoiseplanet

    tortoiseplanet Active Member

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    I wasn't intending to say you aren't an experienced tortoise keeper. It's just common sense to think that ants are going in the enclosure to get food. But if you don't think they are getting any food then prevent them from getting in. 1: Spray their path with chemical cleaners. Chemical cleaners or ant poison will kill the ants in path and remove the sent they travel through. 2. Make a barrier with dried pepper. Ants hate dried pepper and will not cross it if a full barrier is made. 3. (MOST EFFECTIVE) Make a barrier with petroleum jelly. Ants hate the sent of petroleum jelly and it is too slippery for them to cross. These three will prevent ants from getting into your enclosure. I used to have a pet ant colony and used petroleum jelly to keep them in the containers, it also doesn't evaporate. Hope this helps :)

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