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Ways to keep ants out of enclosure

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#1 brittany101


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Posted 23 May 2011 - 04:38 AM


I have an outdoor enclosure for my box turtles and was wondering how to keep fire ants out of the enclosure? I treat outside the enclosure usually once a week to keep them from coming in but I was wondering how everyone else kept them out and if there was a cheaper/easier way of doing so? All suggestions welcome.


#2 animal kingdom2

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Posted 24 May 2011 - 09:42 PM

Sorry if this shows up more than once, I keep typing and trying to post, and it goes away.

Ants - use boiling water to kill the nest. If you use a poison, you will need to remove the turtles for at least a month to ensure that there is no more active poison - I have a tortoise with a neurological problem due to what I think was exposure to a poison.

You could try to surround the ant hill with a moat of water - they won't want to cross, though the turtles might.

#3 animal kingdom2

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Posted 31 May 2011 - 09:23 PM

Someone told me today that bay leaves keep the ants away. I don't know if they meant fresh leaves or the dried ones in the spice section, but I am trying that tomorrow. Fire ants are really taking over the AZ desert this year!

#4 jsbelljr83


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Posted 05 June 2011 - 09:25 AM

I've got a problem with black "sugar" ants, I tried the boiling water trick but it didn't do much good, the ants were deep into the substrate. The only problem the ants cause is getting into the turtles food bowls.

#5 cordell


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Posted 18 June 2011 - 02:16 PM

Any luck with the bay leaves?

#6 Roger3


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Posted 14 July 2011 - 03:33 PM

I have been battling the ants for years now.
And here is what I do.
I use boiling water on the ants that nest inside the turtle pens,
and I use Amdro Ant Block, Ant Bait around the perimeter (outside)of the turlte pens.
I like the Ant Bait because it attracts and kills 14 deferent species of ants.

But here is something interesting that I have observed.
Not all ants are bad for the box turtles.

In my yard there are at least 6 differnt types of ants.
And I have found that 2 species of them get along quite well with the turtles.
One is a very tiny red ant and the other is a larger fast moving black ant.
I have watched these 2 species of ants clean up after feeding time and even clean the
turtles after a measy meal. I have seen my turltes actualy fully extnend their necks and
limbs and allow these ants to swarm them and completely remove all traces of food from my
box turltes. Once the food is gone, the ants disapear.

These ants also seem very terratorial and have kept all the fireants and
the other ant away from the turlte pens.

So now a days I still kills ants on the rest of my property but only
"control" (keep there numbers low) the friendly non stinging ones.

But the fireants receive no mercy.

Edited by Roger3, 14 July 2011 - 03:35 PM.

#7 animal kingdom2

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Posted 15 July 2011 - 08:39 PM

I did try the bay leaves, but just that week. We get the nasty biting little red ants every year, and they are more than a nuisance to the turtles and tortoises - they can be life threatening when they swarm, as they have done several times with mine. This year I do not have the extra habitats to rehome one section at a time, so I am going back to the bay leaves - and paprika. Sigh. Folk remedies, but they do prove to work sometimes!Q

#8 paupiedequincey


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Posted 16 July 2011 - 03:24 PM

I place the feeding rock elevated a bit in the middle of a small clay flower pot base (about 1.5" high) and fill that with water to create a "moat" around the food.. this totally keeps the ants from coming in during feeding.

Of course I still have to keep an eye on it and clean up any mess made that falls outside the base.. but it works well to leave out for an hour or two without attracting 10,000 ants to the enclosure!!

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