New Member
5 Year Member
Apr 8, 2013
Location (City and/or State)
New Orleans
Help!!!! I just noticed a HUGE ant pile in my tortoise enclosure. I keep her in a flowerbed and the ants built a hive right against the brick wall on her side. I want to use ant poison so she can get back outdoors, she hates it inside.
Does anyone have safer methods for dealing with ants? If not, I think once they are dead, just removing two inches of soil from the area and replacing might work.
Does anyone have better suggestions?


The Dog Trainer
10 Year Member!
Platinum Tortoise Club
Jan 9, 2010
Location (City and/or State)
Southern California
Here is a reply that I copy/pasted from a similar thread last week:

"It takes different strategies for different ant species in different parts of the world. I'll share the two strategies that have worked for me:

1. Terro Liquid Ant Baits. This is basically boric acid mixed with sugar water, so it is relatively non-toxic. Here in the dry CA desert, it works really well indoors, but it can also work outdoors. Since its cheap and it won't poison your animals, give it a try. Place the baits right in the ant's path or near their hole and let the ants swarm the bait and carry it home.
2. Amdro Ant Granules. This one is a toxic pesticide, so care must be taken with its use. I ignore the directions on the package. It says to scatter the granules over a large area. No thank you. We have small red ants (similar to fire ants, but a different species), large stinging red and and large black ants. I pour some of the bait granules directly into the entrance of the ant hill to block it and make a little mound. Then I put something over the area like a milk crate or a laundry basket with some weight on it, or a puppy pen, or just put the tortoise somewhere else for a couple of hours. The ants quickly go to work clearing their entrance and they carry all of the bright yellow granules down into the nest to feed the colony. It usually takes an hour or two for them to fully clear the granules away. At that point you can remove the barrier or replace the tortoise since there is no longer any bait topside. This usually kills the entire colony in one application. Occasionally, part of the colony will survive and try to start a new hole a couple feet away from the original. A second application wipes out these stragglers. I try to leave most of the ants alone when they are not in or near my animal enclosures, but from what I've seen of southern fire ants, I would try to knock them out anywhere on or near my entire property. They are bad news, and they can easily kill your small tortoise."


Well-Known Member
Aug 15, 2017
Location (City and/or State)
East Texas
I would use Tom's advice on getting rid of them and make sure to take preventative measures to keep them away from your enclosure. I have heard that sprinkling coffee grounds and cinnamon around the outside of the pen every few weeks will keep them away.