Help! Fire Ant invasion!

JulieBeth07

Songster
Apr 20, 2020
256
305
146
Fort Pierce, FL
We have had a ton of rain lately. We're in so Florida and fire ants are a problem, ESPECIALLY during heavy rain. They pop up everywhere looking for somewhere dry.

Well today I went out to my coop to collect eggs and clean. I started rinsing the outside of the nest boxes and noticed a pile on top of them where it connects to my run. Well there's a huge pile in my run and it looks like an entire freaking colony.

Obviously they (the ants) were not happy with me spraying them with water.... There's also something winged (maybe carpenter ant?) But its right in the entrance to my run and in a nesting box... obviously where my girls need to go tonight. And there are thousands...

WHAT IN THE (INSERT WORD OF CHOICE) AM I SUPPOSED TO DO WITH THIS??

I put some vinegar water and was thinking maybe going to grab some DE. Any suggestions would be SUPER GREATLY APPRECIATED!
 

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deidreg

Songster
Premium Feather Member
Jul 6, 2020
263
824
146
Connecticut
Ack!!!! Can you relocate your chickens somewhere else tonight? The fire ants may attack them. 1:1 vinegar/water will help kill the ants and not harm the chickens. With a big nest, you may need to call an exterminator who knows how to remove them safely. So sorry!
 
Jul 9, 2020
216
658
116
Guthrie, ok
My Coop
Personally, i tried several things for fire ants (vinegar, corn meal, DE, I can't remember what else) and ended up having to use a powder that specifically said it was harmful to birds and covering with heavy objects the birds couldn't get into to get the powder. However that was far from my coop.
My thought is maybe a shop vac with some water and soap in it so they don't get back it. Suck them up several times today... hopefully???
 

Rldad1

Songster
Jul 13, 2020
250
716
126
North Alabama
Close off the nest box, go to Lowe's of HD and get some Orthene. Sprinkle about a table spoon on the mound and lightly disturb it just so a few ants come out. They will take it into the mound and it will kill the queen and the rest of the nest in about 24 hours. The winged things you see are future queens and drones that are going to go on a mating flight so that they can start their own nest. Sprinkle some of the Orthene over every mound you can find. This is a good time to attack since the rain drove them up where you can see them, After the group in the nest box is dead you can clean it out with water and use it again. I have killed 6 in the last few days. Note that Orthene is poisonous for Chickens so be careful.
 

ILoveDaffy

Songster
Aug 16, 2020
486
1,415
133
We have had a ton of rain lately. We're in so Florida and fire ants are a problem, ESPECIALLY during heavy rain. They pop up everywhere looking for somewhere dry.

Well today I went out to my coop to collect eggs and clean. I started rinsing the outside of the nest boxes and noticed a pile on top of them where it connects to my run. Well there's a huge pile in my run and it looks like an entire freaking colony.

Obviously they (the ants) were not happy with me spraying them with water.... There's also something winged (maybe carpenter ant?) But its right in the entrance to my run and in a nesting box... obviously where my girls need to go tonight. And there are thousands...

WHAT IN THE (INSERT WORD OF CHOICE) AM I SUPPOSED TO DO WITH THIS??

I put some vinegar water and was thinking maybe going to grab some DE. Any suggestions would be SUPER GREATLY APPRECIATED!
If it were me I would be very annoyed and angry, and yelling at them to get away from my birds!
 

JulieBeth07

Songster
Apr 20, 2020
256
305
146
Fort Pierce, FL
Thanks everyone for your help! I'm freaking out as I know this is devastating for my girls. I have everything closed off... but I don't really have anywhere all for them to go for the night... except my duck pen. .. and now I'm worried there may be some in there too. I was thinking since they're up on the roosting bars they may be safe? And leave the run closed off ... and have them free range out of the other door in the am.

:barnie

And of course I have trouble with my girls laying in ANY other nesting box other than that one! Trying to break that now.

I was thinking about the shop vac... for the night... the orthene... how would I go about applying that and saving the girls from getting into it? Maybe barricade it off somehow? Will there be remnants left in the dirt in their run even if I scoop it?
😡😡😡😡😡😡😫😫😫😫

And of course I have 2 hours before dark🤦‍♀️
 

Rldad1

Songster
Jul 13, 2020
250
716
126
North Alabama
Thanks everyone for your help! I'm freaking out as I know this is devastating for my girls. I have everything closed off... but I don't really have anywhere all for them to go for the night... except my duck pen. .. and now I'm worried there may be some in there too. I was thinking since they're up on the roosting bars they may be safe? And leave the run closed off ... and have them free range out of the other door in the am.

:barnie

And of course I have trouble with my girls laying in ANY other nesting box other than that one! Trying to break that now.

I was thinking about the shop vac... for the night... the orthene... how would I go about applying that and saving the girls from getting into it? Maybe barricade it off somehow? Will there be remnants left in the dirt in their run even if I scoop it?
😡😡😡😡😡😡😫😫😫😫

And of course I have 2 hours before dark🤦‍♀️
You only need a tablespoon or so. Just try to keep them from eating the dirt or taking a dust bath in it LOL!
 

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