PDA

View Full Version : Fire Ant Control on Florida Horse Farm



Big Holsteiner Mare
Mar. 31, 2011, 08:49 AM
Any suggestions for a commercial pest control company? We are in SW Florida in the Ft Myers area. Obviously need something thats safe for the horses in the pastures and arena. Thanks:)

wireweiners
Mar. 31, 2011, 11:39 AM
How big an area are you talking about? It may be possible to do it yourself by broadcasting Amdro or a similar type bait.

equinelerium
Mar. 31, 2011, 12:03 PM
I don't have a specific company to suggest, but this article has some treatment options:
http://www.attra.org/attra-pub/fireant.html

Good luck! We had an ant problem at our home last summer, what a pain.

Hampton Bay
Mar. 31, 2011, 12:55 PM
muscovy ducks. i have tried many different products, and the ducks were the only thing that truly helped. they don't need a pond, and in fact never used the kiddie pool we had for the other ducks.

but it has to be muscovies. normal ducks don't eat fire ants, nor do chickens. the good thing about muscovies is that they are all but silent, and they are very easy to have around. sometimes you can pick them up for free from someone who has some that have set up camp in their yard.

tasia
Mar. 31, 2011, 05:23 PM
How big an area are you talking about? It may be possible to do it yourself by broadcasting Amdro or a similar type bait.

This:yes: I just put out Amdro Pro. 1 bag did 10 acres for $195.00

Zarafia
Mar. 31, 2011, 05:36 PM
muscovy ducks. i have tried many different products, and the ducks were the only thing that truly helped. they don't need a pond, and in fact never used the kiddie pool we had for the other ducks.

but it has to be muscovies. normal ducks don't eat fire ants, nor do chickens. the good thing about muscovies is that they are all but silent, and they are very easy to have around. sometimes you can pick them up for free from someone who has some that have set up camp in their yard.

OMG, you mean I've got an excuse to get some of those cute little ducklings at the feedstore? LOL Just what I needed.
My business partner is delivering horses to GA. I wonder if he'll notice a few ducklings :lol:.

wildlifer
Mar. 31, 2011, 08:36 PM
Are foriid flies (parasitic wasps) available to the general public now? I know there were some introduced in FL to control fire ant activity and they were very successful. Basically, these wasps lay their eggs on the fire ants' head and when the larvae hatch, the heads pop off. Doesn't get rid of the ants completely, but drives them underground so they leave us all alone.

Big Holsteiner Mare
Mar. 31, 2011, 11:21 PM
Now I have to get ducks and wasps that make their heads pop off :) !! The ants not the ducks :)

Big Holsteiner Mare
Mar. 31, 2011, 11:24 PM
This:yes: I just put out Amdro Pro. 1 bag did 10 acres for $195.00

Where did you buy it? I found 25 lbs for 297$

Hampton Bay
Mar. 31, 2011, 11:58 PM
OMG, you mean I've got an excuse to get some of those cute little ducklings at the feedstore? LOL Just what I needed.
My business partner is delivering horses to GA. I wonder if he'll notice a few ducklings :lol:.

Yes, but you MUST make sure they are muscovies, not just any cute duckling from the feed store. The other varieties, which all descended from wild mallards, don't do nearly the damage to fire ants. We had 3 muscovies and 11 other ducks at one point. The muscovies left after the big dog bit the butt off one of them, and slowly the fire ants came back. We still have other ducks, and chickens, and the fire ants are in full force this year. Last year we had almost none in the areas the muscovies patrolled.

For the record, I have no issues with using pesticides. I used to use them. It was purely by accident that I discovered that the ducks did a way better job than any of the pesticides, without the risks. Plus they will fertilize the pasture :)

Bit O Groby
Apr. 1, 2011, 12:08 AM
I don't want to sound ignorant -- but do you just let the Muscovy ducks loose on the property, or set them in
portable pen. I've never heard of this method of fire ant control, but this year, I have 100's of small mounds popping up throughout my pastures.

MunchkinsMom
Apr. 1, 2011, 12:55 AM
Before you go too wild killing all the fire ants, let me tell you something I just found out last week. The fire ants actually kill ticks and fleas.

I have 10 acres, and I use Amdro, but I don't broadcast over the entire field, I take the shaker jug, and do the "fire ant walk" and treat the mounds. Mostly around the barn. I just tell myself I am getting exercise, and I get a bit of a sadistic satisfaction when I watch the ants carrying the Amdro back into the mound.

I also bring the jug with me when I mow and spread manure. My mower is a garden tractor, so I can see the bigger mounds while mowing or spreading, so I can treat them at the same time.

Badger
Apr. 1, 2011, 06:49 AM
Anyone tried these?

http://www.dirtworks.net/Fire-Ant-Nematodes.html

tasia
Apr. 1, 2011, 12:44 PM
Where did you buy it? I found 25 lbs for 297$

Southern States

Zarafia
Apr. 1, 2011, 01:30 PM
Yes, but you MUST make sure they are muscovies, not just any cute duckling from the feed store. The other varieties, which all descended from wild mallards, don't do nearly the damage to fire ants. We had 3 muscovies and 11 other ducks at one point. The muscovies left after the big dog bit the butt off one of them, and slowly the fire ants came back. We still have other ducks, and chickens, and the fire ants are in full force this year. Last year we had almost none in the areas the muscovies patrolled.

For the record, I have no issues with using pesticides. I used to use them. It was purely by accident that I discovered that the ducks did a way better job than any of the pesticides, without the risks. Plus they will fertilize the pasture :)


Actually if I got ducks my harris hawk would go nuts every time she saw them and every time I flew her I'd end up having duck for dinner LOL.
I guess I'll have to stick with Amdro.

Hattie
Apr. 1, 2011, 11:32 PM
There is NOTHING uglier than a Muscovie duck. I bet they aren't even cute as ducklings.

MunchkinsMom
Apr. 2, 2011, 12:24 AM
There is NOTHING uglier than a Muscovie duck. I bet they aren't even cute as ducklings.

We had quite the controversy here in Ocala, where muscovies had taken up residence in a park, and thrived on all the stuff that folks fed them, and then other folks complained about the poop, and threat to the native ducks, and then they talked of killing them. . . . and last I heard they trapped them and took them to a sanctuary.

Maybe you could offer to adopt those ducks, if ducks was the way you wanted to go.

CFFarm
Apr. 2, 2011, 11:37 AM
http://www.organicgardening.com/learn-and-grow/fire-ant-control

You could try any of these methods. I have some friends that insist the girts work. Haven't tried it myself.

Whitfield Farm Hanoverians
Apr. 4, 2011, 12:03 AM
I've used a product called Esteem & it worked wonderfully. I had Southern States spread it with the fertilizer. Works somewhat slower but the ants stay away longer. I spoke with someone from the company that makes Esteem & they said it's safe for horses. Don't even have to take them off the field to use it as it goes through them like the feed through fly control does. He told me it was even safe for nursing/pregnant mares to graze over it.
Of course I take all mine off because of the fertilizer & would probably take them off even the plain Esteem just to be sure.
This stuff works! Had almost NO fire ants.

Summit Springs Farm
Apr. 4, 2011, 11:13 AM
Call me crazy but this works!!

All you need is carbonated water,soda water just pour it on the mounds, and in a day or so the mound will be dead.

I didn't believe it, but I tried it and it worked! Easiest way I've ever found, from what I understand how it works, is its heavier than water and somehow drowns the ants.

boosma47
Apr. 4, 2011, 08:17 PM
BHM, ya just have to come back here to get rid of those suckers. They wouldn't dare follow you!