To Battle! (2)

Round 1

I boiled tons of water and deposited it on the hostile army camps. It was a surprise attack and they never saw it coming. While depositing I found another 15 or so nests and they were ‘treated’ as well.

I decided to wait with the celebration after a good night’s sleep (this fighting is tiring). Plagued by nightmares of large ants throwing boiling water on me, I cannot say I woke up fully rested. But with a coffee in my hand I went to inspect the grounds.

The ants had regrouped and rebuild about 10 new nests. I therefore concluded that the boiling water strategy may be working. Today I am going in for round two. As soon as the water boils I’m getting back in my guerilla gear and make an attempt to destroy what is left.

In the mean time I am still wondering. How come these colonies have moved in and grew so quickly. Is there a secret I am not aware of? We had a gardener, who would come once a month. But I suppose he found other customers because after the first time he never returned. Maybe he sprayed the fields with stuff that is repulsive to ants? Maybe I should try to get in touch with him and ask him to please, please come back?

Round 2

The water boiled and this time I (cleverly?) used a little scoop thingy to first dig a little hole then pour in boiling water. The idea was that the water would then go down their entrance and not spread over the ground as it did yesterday.

Humming the Rocky anthem in my head, I went to work. The first pot of boiling water went down the holes smoothly. Half an hour later when I wanted to start pouring the next pot, my back yard seemed to have changed. Instead of the peaceful garden it once was, there now was a hustle and bustle in the air. I bet the leftover ants are trying to escape.

Hold on a minute….

Do ants fly? When I looked a little closer it looked like little wasps, holding on to something yellow. (I wasn’t wearing my glasses, the yellow bit also might have been part of their wings). And also, it did not seem like they wanted to leave at all. It looked more like they were searching for their ‘holes’ to crawl back in. Had I not been eradicating ants? What the heck is going on?

Left: zoomed in on the creature that is presumably looking for the marked hole. Right: a blow up (475%) of the zoomed in picture. The actual critter is about 1 cm long. Does anybody know what this is?

Seems I need to do some more investigating. I will be back with the results.

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4 thoughts on “To Battle! (2)

  1. They could be triyng to save their queen, don’t you think? And… Yes, there are flying ants in this land. People use to think they announce the rain, I just found one near my laundry room and it was huge!
    Good luck with your guerrilla and keep your “Eye of tiger” over those ants.

    • I think you have a good point about the queens. Do you think they are the queens? Or are these the fighters that save the queens? And should I get rid of them? Or will they move on automatically? I have to say, to me it is an interesting adventure! (love the eye of the tiger reference by the way!)

  2. they dont look like flying ants to me, more like some species of bumblebee.
    http://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hommels
    The black and yellow on the tail doesnt look at all like the flying ants I’ve seen.

    The good news is, if they’re bumblebees, they are pretty much harmless (and good for your flowers).

    Im guessing they had an inground nest near where the ant-hole was, and you boiled both the ant’s nest and the bumblebee nest.

    • Hmmmm, I don’t know. They don’t make the humble bee sound or anything and they are not that hairy either. After some more research I am thinking Hover flies now. Never heard about them before, but this (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microdon) might just be it. In that case I will leave the Hover flies alone and focus on the ants; if they are gone, then the hover flies will leave too, right? 🙂

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