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Old 24-07-2004, 11:08 AM
Nick Maclaren
 
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Default Can ants cause structural damage?

In article ,
Matthew Durkin wrote:

I seem to have a large ant population living somewhere under the front of
the house. They are throwing out quite large amounts of sand / soil.
Can they cause structural damage to the house? They ventured into the house
earlier this year, but some ant stop spray stopped them right away. Now I'm
just worried about them damaging the house.
On the front yard (paved) they seem to appear by making holes surrounded by
sand/earth from the edges of the paving.


Vanishingly unlikely. Even on an older house, the foundations are
likely to be 18" deep, and few ants nests go down much more. In the
UK, that is - the same does NOT apply in the tropics!

They can disturb paving, but even that is rare, because they usually
leave enough soil to support it. If the large nest under the house
is causing a major nuisance, then using a borax-based killer will
destroy the nest. Not quickly, but eventually. You could also try
pouring a few gallons of boiling water into it, which will reduce
its size at least.


Regards,
Nick Maclaren.
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Old 24-07-2004, 04:03 PM
Nick Maclaren
 
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Default Can ants cause structural damage?

In article ,
Paul Simonite wrote:
The message
from (Nick Maclaren) contains these words:

18" deep, and few ants nests go down much more. In the
UK, that is - the same does NOT apply in the tropics!


In the tropics some of the species of White Ant are a serious threat to
buildings. They chew the wood and use the pulp for mushroom growing.
They then eat the mushrooms. The method of control is to search for the
queen and destroy her. The colony then breaks up and, hopefully, dies
out.


White ants are not actually ants, and there are a few colonies that
have established in the UK. But, even with global warming and central
heating, they are VERY marginal here. Even in southern Europe (where
they are 'natural'), they aren't a major problem.

And, actually, they digest the wood more directly, because their
intestines contain appropriate bacteria. The ants that farm fungus
are true ants, not termites, and I am not sure how widespread they
are in Africa. Termites (white ants) are, certainly, and I can remember
all furniture standing in tins full of kerosene.

Safari ants are another kettle of fish! They bivouwac (Sp?) overnight
in ball shaped groups with the queen at the centre, each group can
number many hundreds of thousands of individuals. At daybreak the bivvy
breaks up and the ants form long columns consuming all living things in
their path. Obviously not every single organism is consumed, some
escaping. The columns move out from the bivvy in an arc and then bivvy
again. The next day the columns move in a different arc, eventually
coming full circle. This is a fascinating process to observe, but not
one for the faint hearted! Other tropical ants are capable of deep
excavations, probably to escape the heat of the baked earth.


It was the latter I was referring to, and it is not just the heat
but the low humidity.

I never encountered a major ant invasion (and it is not JUST safari
ants that do it), but got bitten many times. The experience makes
one fall over with laughter whenever people in this country complain
too much about ant bites :-)


Regards,
Nick Maclaren.
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Old 24-07-2004, 11:04 PM
Paul Anderson
 
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Default Can ants cause structural damage?

Matthew Durkin said the following on 23/07/2004 20:32:
Hi All,
I seem to have a large ant population living somewhere under the front of
the house. They are throwing out quite large amounts of sand / soil.
Can they cause structural damage to the house? They ventured into the house
earlier this year, but some ant stop spray stopped them right away. Now I'm
just worried about them damaging the house.
On the front yard (paved) they seem to appear by making holes surrounded by
sand/earth from the edges of the paving.

let me know if there's anything I should do. How much would an exterminator
cost?

Thanks,
Matthew


I've been fighting a loosing battle with ants for 2 years. They have made my lawn look
like a mole colony lives under it and my paving slabs are all uneven from their activity.
I've tried every poison going which at best keeps them at bay for a couple of weeks. One
day last week I came home from work to find seven (yes 7) nests on/under the lawn and a
further six nests in various other places such including under the window boxes and
between gaps in the brickwork and paving slabs.

I sat down with a brew while I considered my options.

I called a one man war cabinet and drew up a highly detailed map of the garden. I decided
a massive assault from several fronts using different weapons was in order. The lawn would
be rescued using insecticide spray bought from the local garden centre armoury which had
already proved itself a worthy weapon in earlier battles. The paving slabs would be
liberated using 'Nippon Powder' obtained from 'Wilkinson's, a general housewares store
that also sells insect extermination weapons from a carefully hidden shelf near to the
hanging basket display area. I also armed myself with a freshly boiled kettle to take care
of any 'runners' then took a deep breath and went into battle.

To be continued...


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Old 25-07-2004, 09:02 AM
Matthew Durkin
 
Posts: n/a
Default Can ants cause structural damage?

"Paul Anderson" wrote in message
...
Matthew Durkin said the following on 23/07/2004 20:32:
Hi All,
I seem to have a large ant population living somewhere under the front

of
the house. They are throwing out quite large amounts of sand / soil.
Can they cause structural damage to the house? They ventured into the

house
earlier this year, but some ant stop spray stopped them right away. Now

I'm
just worried about them damaging the house.
On the front yard (paved) they seem to appear by making holes surrounded

by
sand/earth from the edges of the paving.

let me know if there's anything I should do. How much would an

exterminator
cost?

Thanks,
Matthew


I've been fighting a loosing battle with ants for 2 years. They have made

my lawn look
like a mole colony lives under it and my paving slabs are all uneven from

their activity.
I've tried every poison going which at best keeps them at bay for a couple

of weeks. One
day last week I came home from work to find seven (yes 7) nests on/under

the lawn and a
further six nests in various other places such including under the window

boxes and
between gaps in the brickwork and paving slabs.

I sat down with a brew while I considered my options.

I called a one man war cabinet and drew up a highly detailed map of the

garden. I decided
a massive assault from several fronts using different weapons was in

order. The lawn would
be rescued using insecticide spray bought from the local garden centre

armoury which had
already proved itself a worthy weapon in earlier battles. The paving slabs

would be
liberated using 'Nippon Powder' obtained from 'Wilkinson's, a general

housewares store
that also sells insect extermination weapons from a carefully hidden shelf

near to the
hanging basket display area. I also armed myself with a freshly boiled

kettle to take care
of any 'runners' then took a deep breath and went into battle.

To be continued...



Crikey - sounds like you have a real problem! Mine seem to all live in one
place at the front of my house (well under the front wall I think) and march
in a very neat line round the side, under my side gate, along the side path
and to my back garden where they milk the billions of aphids we seem to have
this year. I don't have a lawn, and as yet, the holes appearing under the
paving at the front of my house hasn't caused the paving to move.
Let me know if you are successful. I may need to carry out a similar
exercise if they start to wreck my paving etc!!
thanks,
Matthew




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Old 25-07-2004, 10:09 AM
Sacha
 
Posts: n/a
Default Can ants cause structural damage?

On 25/7/04 9:26, in article , "Matthew
Durkin" wrote:

"Paul Anderson" wrote in message
...
Matthew Durkin said the following on 23/07/2004 20:32:
Hi All,
I seem to have a large ant population living somewhere under the front

of
the house. They are throwing out quite large amounts of sand / soil.
Can they cause structural damage to the house? They ventured into the

house
earlier this year, but some ant stop spray stopped them right away. Now

I'm
just worried about them damaging the house.
On the front yard (paved) they seem to appear by making holes surrounded

by
sand/earth from the edges of the paving.

let me know if there's anything I should do. How much would an

exterminator
cost?

Thanks,
Matthew


I've been fighting a loosing battle with ants for 2 years. They have made

my lawn look
like a mole colony lives under it and my paving slabs are all uneven from

their activity.
I've tried every poison going which at best keeps them at bay for a couple

of weeks. One
day last week I came home from work to find seven (yes 7) nests on/under

the lawn and a
further six nests in various other places such including under the window

boxes and
between gaps in the brickwork and paving slabs.

I sat down with a brew while I considered my options.

I called a one man war cabinet and drew up a highly detailed map of the

garden. I decided
a massive assault from several fronts using different weapons was in

order. The lawn would
be rescued using insecticide spray bought from the local garden centre

armoury which had
already proved itself a worthy weapon in earlier battles. The paving slabs

would be
liberated using 'Nippon Powder' obtained from 'Wilkinson's, a general

housewares store
that also sells insect extermination weapons from a carefully hidden shelf

near to the
hanging basket display area. I also armed myself with a freshly boiled

kettle to take care
of any 'runners' then took a deep breath and went into battle.

To be continued...



Crikey - sounds like you have a real problem! Mine seem to all live in one
place at the front of my house (well under the front wall I think) and march
in a very neat line round the side, under my side gate, along the side path
and to my back garden where they milk the billions of aphids we seem to have
this year. I don't have a lawn, and as yet, the holes appearing under the
paving at the front of my house hasn't caused the paving to move.
Let me know if you are successful. I may need to carry out a similar
exercise if they start to wreck my paving etc!!
thanks,
Matthew



My stepdaughter has recently used an ant killer called 'Kybosh' which she
got from Tucker's Maltings. She says it's extremely effective. She was
driven to this because ants had invaded her hallway and - she thinks - were
laying eggs between the floorboards, though this sounds a bit unlikely to
me. My knowledge of ant behaviour is very rudimentary, so perhaps she's
right! Before she moved in, earlier this year, the house had been
unoccupied for some time which might account for the ant explosion.
My own experience of using Nippon is that it's not much use. It's been
around for a long time, so perhaps the ants are used to it now and have
developed an immunity!
--
Sacha
www.hillhousenursery.co.uk
South Devon
(remove the weeds to email me)

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Old 25-07-2004, 03:03 PM
Mike Lyle
 
Posts: n/a
Default Can ants cause structural damage?

Paul Anderson wrote in message . ..
[...]
took a deep breath and went into battle.

To be continued...


Best of luck, old chap! Gad, I wish I was going with you...but with
this damned leg I'd only hold you up.

Mike.
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Old 25-07-2004, 05:04 PM
Stan The Man
 
Posts: n/a
Default Can ants cause structural damage?

In article , Mike Lyle
wrote:

Paul Anderson wrote in message
...
[...]
took a deep breath and went into battle.

To be continued...


Best of luck, old chap! Gad, I wish I was going with you...but with
this damned leg I'd only hold you up.

Mike.


POTD*

Simon

*Ways to qualify for a POTD (Post Of The Day) pin:

1) Make me laugh out loud
2) Enlighten me/anyone concisely and coherently
3) Keep your head while all about you are losing theirs
4) Introduce me to a beautiful and available woman
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