Fire ants and chickens ???

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by waterguy81, Apr 19, 2011.

  1. waterguy81

    waterguy81 In the Brooder

    Apr 15, 2011
    Southwest Louisiana
    I am getting close to being ready to build my coop and run. I picked out a grassy area in the yard, however I have a hard time with fire ant beds and black ants as well.

    Is this a problem for the chickens and if so what is the best way to get rid of the ants and not the chickens ?

  2. howfunkyisurchicken

    howfunkyisurchicken Crowing

    Apr 11, 2011
    I frequently see my chickens eating bees and any other bug they can get their beaks on. Get some chickens and you may just get rid of your ant problem [​IMG]
    Saaniya likes this.
  3. maclady

    maclady Songster

    Jan 28, 2011
    Lost in Space
    I hope someone else can chime in as to weather or not chickens will eat fire ants. I am a newbie to chickens and have 4 now. I would love it if they would eat the ants. Not sure what kind I have now but I don't like them. Their stings hurt. [​IMG]
  4. brownegger

    brownegger In the Brooder

    Apr 17, 2011
    SE Ohio
    It is not likely that the chickens will rid you of your fire ants. They may eat some but, the shear numbers would be overwhelming. Also, fire ants do not taste as good to animals as other ants. They have a very acrid taste apparently. In the event of a fire ant attack, your chickens would likely lose, especially if they are trapped in a coop with no escape. I would monitor the ant problem but, I would not deter from having chickens around them. I doubt many chickens fall to them. We have no fire ants here in Southeastern Ohio but, I am very familiar with them and their habits. Just be sure that you are not building the coop and run on top of active fire ant nests. If nests are present, use some type of extermination practice on them. Borax and sugar mixed together has rid me of many ants over the years without applying pesticides, not sure but, it may work on the fire ants also. Just keep it away from your chickens and other pets.
    barred2rock likes this.
  5. pixiedouglas

    pixiedouglas Songster

    put DE all over the top of their holes and under the coop and in the coop, that will help kill them

    I've seen posts from other people on here about fire ants attacking hatching eggs and baby chicks and the broody hen too so I would try and get rid of them if it was me.
  6. aggie9296

    aggie9296 Songster

    Jan 28, 2011
    Panama City, FL
    My free ranging chickens do eat Fire Ants. Sometimes. Usually they scratch the bejeezles out of the mound and the FA move on to another area. My ants aren't super aggressive so I doubt they would kill a grown animal that could get away. Plus I don't let the mounds get monster size before treating them.

    I have put Orthene on the mounds at night to kill the little @#$%^&*s and wash it in the next AM so the chickens aren't eating Orthene covered FA.

    I've gotten some DE and we'll see what it does to the ants.
  7. Quote:I agree , Great post.
    I live in florida where ants are a major issue. My silkies , i love them dearly , are not as smart as my RIRs , Silver Laced Wynadottes , etc. My silkies are Cute and Friendly but will sit there with ants crawling right up their legs lol. meanwhile our fiesty RIR was eating them like popcorn. If a hawk flys overhead everyone takes cover except the silkies. They dont Roost at night , and they dont fly. they are suburban chickens lol where as a non silkie breed is more "street smart"..

  8. CelticOaksFarm

    CelticOaksFarm Family owned, family run

    Sep 7, 2009
    Florida - Space Coast
    FL here and DE did nothing to the fireants on our property.
    1 person likes this.
  9. A.T. Hagan

    A.T. Hagan Don't Panic

    Aug 13, 2007
    North/Central Florida
    DE can be made to work, but only in the dry season and you have to reapply every week or so until the ants move on. Once it gets wet it loses effectiveness. I use it in my nest boxes and around my feed cans.

    Outdoors though I use Amdro or some other antbait around the outside of my fixed yard. It's the only synthetic pesticide I use because it works and no other method I've ever come across other than gasoline does. I just don't let the birds out for a few days or until after a good rain after I put it down. Usually only have to do this about once, sometimes twice, a season.

    I have both the native Florida Harvester ants (the big red ones) and fire ants. My birds ignore them both.
  10. 7L Farm

    7L Farm Songster

    Jul 22, 2010
    Anderson, Texas
    I've used rice to rid fire ants. It takes a while for it to work & you might have to re-apply but it works. We try not to use any chemicals on the farm.

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