Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Update to leaf cutter ants

During our break, we were able to find more information regarding leaf cutter ants. We queried a scientist at INBIO Park and a naturalist at the Rain Forest Aerial Tram. The scientist at INBIO explained that leaf cutter ants as a whole are indestructible. The only way to wipe them out would be to kill the queen but since she is hidden in the nest that would be impossible (I knew this already). Basically he said the only way to keep the ants from a garden area would be to create a moat around the garden. I don’t think I want to go to that extreme but I will keep it in mind. According to the naturalist, ants use a sense of smell to find their way around. I used this information along with something I read previously about them not liking citrus to come up with a new plan. I cut a lime in half and simultaneously squeezed and scraped the lime along the bark of a tree the ants had been destroying. I made an entire circuit around the tree trunk heavily spreading both the juice and pulp everywhere –it took to limes. The ants immediately became lost going back up the tree instead of down. By the next day the ants were gone entirely. It’s been two weeks since I spread the lime juice and I haven’t seen any ants on the tree since. Patrick says it’s a fluke but I plan to try this process on another tree this week. It can’t hurt, right?


Anonymous said...

hi guys

just sitting here in the cold of its only 23f so almost heat wave .....thinking hmmmm warm sun and warm air would be nice. Miranda is loving the pics that she is seeing of azure . if possible let us know your email in one of azures messages to miranda and we will try to send some of miranda and stuff up here for her. Hope this all finds you well and happy ...hmmmmm fresh coffee.........


Jones Family said...

Glad your weather isn't too bad. We heard about the below zero temps. Azure is complaining about the heat here since she has gym outside. I'll have Azure send you my email address today.