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Author Topic: Any Tips on Getting Rid of Little Fire Ants (Solenopsis geminata)  (Read 477 times)

ChirimoyaNirvana

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Hello, I am writing this post to see if anyone has successfully gotten rid of the little fire ants (Solenopsis geminata) that love to live on the leaves, flowers, fruit, and wood on trees.  These little fire ants as they are called in Hawaii are the worst pest I have ever encountered.  The ants don't seem to affect the trees at all, but they are ferocious and sting worse than the fire ants I am used to dealing with in Florida.  I have tried baiting them, spraying them, hosing the trees down, etc...nothing works long term and they come back worse than before.  Every time I go out to pick any fruit these ants just rain down all over me and sting me very severely.  These ants don't sting right away, they prefer to get under your clothing and sting you in the worst locations and the pain can last over a week.  Anyways, I would greatly appreciate it any advice to get rid of these ants once and for all.  I am located on the Hamakua Coast on the big island of Hawaii and all my neighbors have these ants.   

Odenwald

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Re: Any Tips on Getting Rid of Little Fire Ants (Solenopsis geminata)
« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2020, 02:50:45 PM »
Sugar and borax is a homemade remedy.  Also find two nests, dig up a shovel of ants from each nest and dump them on the other one.  They will fight and kill each other.  You might only get one dead nest, but then use a third and so on.  Do it quickly before they crawl up the spade handle and sting you!

shot

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Re: Any Tips on Getting Rid of Little Fire Ants (Solenopsis geminata)
« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2020, 03:22:44 PM »
When you say get rid ,really not possible as they will migrate back on your property.No easy way,many different baits,some homemade.Baits need to be sheltered from rain and direct sunlight.Try making a bait with beauveria bassiana mixed in with potato starch, dextrose and maybe protein source.May have to invest in a backpack mist blower to to reach up in the canopy to apply  beauveria bassiana or other products neemix 4.5 what ever.You need to try experimenting.It might be a repellent hot peppers solution or citric acid watch ph on that.










SeaWalnut

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Re: Any Tips on Getting Rid of Little Fire Ants (Solenopsis geminata)
« Reply #3 on: April 29, 2020, 03:22:58 PM »
Consider that those ants protect the tree from pests.They also bring in aphids if its their tree,but they will protect it from caterpillars,etc.
I would leave them alone and colect fruits more carefull.
I got 2 big european fire ants colonies on my land and a new one that moved in the greenhouse and im happy with them.

A good ant sting its also good for your health,keeps your immune sistem in good shape and its something usefull especially now with corona virus. ;D
« Last Edit: April 29, 2020, 03:24:39 PM by SeaWalnut »

Kevin Jones

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Re: Any Tips on Getting Rid of Little Fire Ants (Solenopsis geminata)
« Reply #4 on: April 29, 2020, 03:37:13 PM »
I use an organic orchard spray... Bonide... which contains pyrethrum as the main ingredient for my Fire Ant pest control program.
I don't think it destroys the whole colony... but acts like a hurricane on a coastal town... sets them back considerably.
I stir up the mound then spray the ants heavily.
Repeated spraying every so often seems to help.

Kevin Jones

Finca La Isla

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Re: Any Tips on Getting Rid of Little Fire Ants (Solenopsis geminata)
« Reply #5 on: April 29, 2020, 04:06:23 PM »
 I think that, rather than spraying a mound, it is better to saturate it with buckets of pyrethrum.  Make sure the liquid soaks in deeply where the eggs and core of the nest are.

shot

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Re: Any Tips on Getting Rid of Little Fire Ants (Solenopsis geminata)
« Reply #6 on: April 29, 2020, 04:28:28 PM »
Are these arboreal or terrestrial species?If mound builders they are more easily dealt with.
  By some logic I must now be immortal by thousands of fire ant bites I've experienced.
Some don't understand what you're dealing with.

Oncorhynchus

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Re: Any Tips on Getting Rid of Little Fire Ants (Solenopsis geminata)
« Reply #7 on: April 29, 2020, 04:32:42 PM »
You could try tanglefoot, itís basically DIY flypaper. I wrap a 4-6Ē section of the trunk with flagging tape put a 1Ē band of tanglefoot near the top of the tape (it will slowly drip down the rest of the tape). If the tree is staked or there is another plant touching the canopy youíll need to tanglefoot those and there canít be a way for the ants to go under the tape. It might be a little more work but it works well and I like to avoid using nasty synthetic pesticides if possible.

PahoaJo

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Re: Any Tips on Getting Rid of Little Fire Ants (Solenopsis geminata)
« Reply #8 on: April 30, 2020, 12:02:28 AM »
Have you been to this site?

http://www.littlefireants.com

You need a bait that sterilizes the queen.  And unfortunately, it needs to be done on a regular basis or they just come back like you said because even if you treat, they will come in from all sides of your property if your neighbors don't.


spaugh

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Re: Any Tips on Getting Rid of Little Fire Ants (Solenopsis geminata)
« Reply #9 on: April 30, 2020, 01:39:02 AM »
Are these arboreal or terrestrial species?If mound builders they are more easily dealt with.
  By some logic I must now be immortal by thousands of fire ant bites I've experienced.
Some don't understand what you're dealing with.

We have small red ants that bite bad here.  You step on their hole and they cover your foot quickly.  Wearing sandals in the garden is risky business.  Almost stepped on a rattle snake today and those fire ants are everywhere!

I used a product called extinquish that worked pretty well but quit using it since its probably super toxic. 
Brad Spaugh

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Re: Any Tips on Getting Rid of Little Fire Ants (Solenopsis geminata)
« Reply #10 on: April 30, 2020, 10:01:18 AM »
Florida released parasite for comom fire ant.Phorid flies six species

https://sfyl.ifas.ufl.edu/lawn-and-garden/sustainable-fire-ant-control/

They have reduced fire ant numbers, seems like 80% here on Pineisland .I don't apply anything anymore except if they get near the chicken coop which is very rare now.
 Dr Crane theorized fire ants keep down the sri lankan weevil.I have used Steinernema feltiae on fire ants ,bought them from rinconvtova

https://www.rinconvitova.com/nematode.htm

They sell them very reasonable ,apply through irrigation at evening night
« Last Edit: April 30, 2020, 10:04:24 AM by shot »

ChirimoyaNirvana

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Re: Any Tips on Getting Rid of Little Fire Ants (Solenopsis geminata)
« Reply #11 on: April 30, 2020, 01:38:41 PM »
Thank you all for the advice.  And to further clarify, these ants are arboreal and do not make nests on the ground.  This means that, there are no ant mounds.  I do agree that the ants are ferocious defenders of my trees and keep a lot of leaf eating insects off the trees, however, when one of these ants stings you it is like having your skin set on fire...and these ants are so small that it is very easy to get dozens of bites on your armpits and even your chest.  As I said, they like to get under your clothes and they even make dogs and cats blind.  I do pick my fruit with lots of care and put the fruits into a bucket with soapy water...this seems to be the easiest and most affordable way to make harvesting on this farm happen since all attempts to control these ants has failed thus far.

 

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