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Thread: Teaching Ants to Spell Out Words on the Driveway

  1. #1
    Administrator Islander's Avatar
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    Default Teaching Ants to Spell Out Words on the Driveway

    To teach ants to spell out words on the driveway, first write out the letters with sugar syrup. The ants congregate on the syrup and form the word. I think that at first they don't get it, really. But with positive reinforcement and coaching, pretty soon when the ants see you coming with the syrup, they start spelling out words they already know. I have one ant team up to 41 words already. They seem to like profanity best for some reason.
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    Moderator Julieanne's Avatar
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    Default Re: Teaching Ants to Spell Out Words on the Driveway

    What fun!

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    Veteran Member grulla's Avatar
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    Default Re: Teaching Ants to Spell Out Words on the Driveway

    If you all think ants are sentient beings, you won't like my posting response on today's Mercola growing peonies article...lol! https://articles.mercola.com/gardeni...w-peonies.aspx

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    Administrator Islander's Avatar
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    Default Re: Teaching Ants to Spell Out Words on the Driveway

    Ants and peonies are symbiotic. Peonies can't open without the help of the ants. Guess you'd better not plant any, Grulla, with your ants exterminated.
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    Veteran Member grulla's Avatar
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    Default Re: Teaching Ants to Spell Out Words on the Driveway

    Quote Originally Posted by Islander View Post
    Ants and peonies are symbiotic. Peonies can't open without the help of the ants. Guess you'd better not plant any, Grulla, with your ants exterminated.
    UPDATE: ANT CONGA LINE .................................................. ...........................

    On just the east half of my property alone, there must be at least a dozen active ant hole colonies, most of which are fairly benign and don't bother me, where I could grow peonies. However, sometimes, some of these ant colonies can get big, out of control, and aggressive, and if they are near my abode or my disabled SIL's mobile home (MH) next door, they can become a real nuisance.

    And around here, ya gotta be careful where you stand still too long, as the ants will quickly climb up my/one's leg, which I don't feel right away cuz I wear knee high Hanes or FotL tube socks. And the resultant welts can be a PITA (literally) or worse. And I carefully use topical Absorbine Jr to treat those welts.

    Anyway, I have discovered a non-toxic way to kill an ant colony, simply drown 'em with WATER. I fabricated an 18"-24" appx. long piece of 3/8" copper tubing from a 50' coil I invested in a few years ago, (as it's a common size for water faucet sink and propane hook-up pigtails), cut it with a tubing cutter and bent it in a 90* swept/radiused elbow using a common tubing bender, and flared the one end with a common tubing flaring tool (kit). Then it gets attached to a garden hose via a brass 3/8" fitting with a flare-to-garden hose brass thread adapter from ACE Hardware, and a garden hose ball valve in between for convenience. The 90* bend permits the garden hose to lay completely and safely flat on the ground to help prevent a trip hazard when the copper tube is inserted into the ant hole.

    The water is then turned on via the conveniently located ball valve, to the extent that the water level remains steady around the ant hole. I check it periodically and adjust the water flow if needed.

    This ant drowning method can take just a couple days, or perhaps much longer, like a few weeks, depending on the depth and porosity of the ant colony hole, so you want to make sure you have a reliable, low cost water source so you don't get sticker shock from your monthly water utility bill, or you don't run a marginal well dry if such is the case. Works very well for me.

    I also have another non-chemical ant killing idea that I have never tried, but want to mention it here for others. My local independent super market sells dry ice for appx $1.60/lb, so I was wondering if one could place a COVERED chunk of dry ice over an ant hole entrance which could eventually asphyxiate the ant colony. Dry ice, aka CO2, just like propane, is heavier than air and sinks, (while hydrogen, helium, and natural gas are lighter than air and rise), so the CO2 should have no problem permeating the earth, which BTW, environmentally conscious people like to do in their veggie gardens to sequester CO2 into the earth through many other means, such as carbon ash.


    The ants around here come in many different shapes and sizes, and I don't know one strain from another. However, I have an outdoor landline telephone extension in a outdoor rain tight, electrical steel shelter box, connected via a PVC conduit into the old hayshed, that I installed over 15-20 years ago. One year these tiny ants somehow got into the conduit and climbed up into the shelter box and ruined the telephone instrument which I had to replace. I suspect that those tiny ants may have been fire ants, as I once heard that they have an affinity for electricity??? That problem only ever happened once, as I took some corrective measures.
    Last edited by grulla; 05-28-20 at 04:13 PM.

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    Administrator Islander's Avatar
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    Default Re: Teaching Ants to Spell Out Words on the Driveway

    Grulla, it's about your acronyms. Some, like MIL, PVC and PITA, are pretty common, and even if they are not translatable, no meaning is lost. However, others (MH, SM, DI) are not readily recognizable. Please keep in mind that at any hour of the day or night we have typically over 100 visitors on the site, for many of whom English is a second language. It would be courteous for you to at least spell out the first usage, after which you might abbreviate once you have a referent.

    ETA: Have you ever tried Aspartame? I intend to do so this summer, when the colonies are active again.
    Last edited by Islander; 05-28-20 at 02:04 PM.
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    Veteran Member grulla's Avatar
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    Default Re: Teaching Ants to Spell Out Words on the Driveway

    MH=mobile home or perhaps caravan in Oz & UK. SM = supermarket. And PITA = pain in the ass, sorry you asked that, lol! Some above corrections made.

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