Ants in my compost pile!

Papas Chickens

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5 Years
Jul 13, 2014
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Howdy Ya'll I have a issue with ants in my compost pile what would be a good way to get rid of them so I can get a healthy compost pile going without the ants killing all the benificial bugs?
 

IttyBiddyRedHen

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Jul 30, 2011
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I usually have 2 compost piles going at the same time. We have fire ants here in SC, and there is always a mound in the piles. It keeps them areated real good, and I have not seen any negative effects from the fireants being in the compost.
Hopefully more people will respond.
 

vehve

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Your pile is too dry, wet it properly. Ants in the pile means it's too dry, a foul smell means it's too wet. The optimum moisture level is when you can grab a handful of compost and squeeze out a few drops of water from it.
 

Papas Chickens

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5 Years
Jul 13, 2014
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Dateland Arizona
Thx guys im trying to get a wild population of BSFL in my compost and I think ants will kill them plus i want introduce some earthworms into it aswell. I live in the desert and our soil is crap. Ii also have a chicken/goat/rabbit manure pile that I just started yesterday should I wet that down the same time I wet the compost pile?
 

vehve

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What do you have in the original pile? I would just compost the manure in there with it, it would add nitrogen nicely, unless it's mainly greens in the original pile. After wetting the pile, I'd cover the pile with some black plastic to create a welcoming environment for your creepy crawlies.
 

Papas Chickens

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5 Years
Jul 13, 2014
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Dateland Arizona
What do you have in the original pile? I would just compost the manure in there with it, it would add nitrogen nicely, unless it's mainly greens in the original pile. After wetting the pile, I'd cover the pile with some black plastic to create a welcoming environment for your creepy crawlies.

I relocated my compost pile because it was in my soon to be chicken breeding area so I started a new pile. I first put alot of dead oleander limbs I had laying around then I put some dead leaves that I raked out from under my oleanders when I was cleaning the yard. Then I put a good amount of chicken/goat/rabbit manure ontop of that then I put some green clippings on the pile then some more dead leaves. Then I put more manure then some hay and straw that I had laying around on and toped it off with more manure then wet it down really good. I dont have any black plastic the weather out here in Arizona will ruin it fast anyways.
 

vehve

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Some trash bags or cardboard would probably work too, or empty feed bags or something. I don't have personal experience with the BSF larvae as we don't have them here, but @RichnSteph quickly got some to move in with the plastic.
 

sourland

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I believe that Oleander leaves/branches contain a toxin that may not be beneficial in your compost pile.
 

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