Borax Ant Baits and Sand

  • Thread starter Cobul
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  • #1
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terro bait.jpg



I put a Terro liquid ant bait (made of Borax), and the Pharaoh Ants were attracted to it. But as they went inside, they slowly build some kind of sand mount in the entrance. The bait hole is a bit higher up the surface, were they constructing some kinds of steps? Why are their putting dirts even inside the Terro? At first I thought the ants were trying to neutralize the Borax with some kinds of compounds. But they seem to get fewer in numbers so the Borax could be effective.

What kinds of reactions to neutralize Borax anyway?
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
Tom.G
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They were probably building a ramp for easy access.

I don't know how to neutralize boric acid, just that it is a very good pesticide, even works on cock roaches!

Save yourself some money, the bait is boric acid and sugar, and I would guess water, all very low priced. Look in the Insecticide section of a hardware store for the boric acid... the sugar and water should be easy. :wink:

Just don't get it in an open sore or breath much of it, and after handling wash before eating or drinking. It used to be the go-to as an eye wash solution for minor eye infections.

For the Terro bait the SDS (MSDS, Material Safety Data Sheet) can be downloaded here as a .PDF:
https://images.salsify.com/image/upload/s--IqYI3TQg--/fl_attachment/an3hh3ievridzitbua5f.pdf

Cheers,
Tom
 
  • #3
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terra leak 1q.jpg



terra leak 2.jpg


After 3 days. The borax liquid leaked. And it happened to 2 separate bait. Did the Pharaoh ants just eat the plastic? Or was there a chemical reaction?

It filled the room with smell. I removed the baits and wiped the liquid. And read instructiona from Terro website one was supposed to use wet cloth with hot water and soak the spots for one hour. I did that.

What is hot water connected to boric acid?

How else would you remove it?
 
  • #4
Borek
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If memory serves me well boric acid is difficult to dissolve, most likely the hot water just speeds the dissolution up. Also its solubility goes up with temperature, so hot water will help in cleaning as well.
 
  • #5
BillTre
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I put those things on a piece of aluminum foil with the edges turned up a bit, in case of such events.
The ants always find their way here.
You can speed it up by putting few ants on the container.
If they are happy with the bait, they will leave a trail fo followers.
 
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  • #6
Borek
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Note: aluminum is rather reactive, I would not use it in a presence of any substance that has "acid" in the name (unless you plan to post another thread starting with "I put the ant bait on the alufoil, it eat through the foil and left some white residue, what the heck is it?" :wink: ).
 
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  • #7
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When I tried to watch the ants moving around the spilled liquid of the Terro. They seemed to be avoiding the liquid and one only of them took a sip. I read ants can send alarm signal. How does this work in the Pharaoh ants. How many words do they understand (word per pheromone)?

Also the spill caused a quite a smell in the 600 sq. foot room. After removing the two pieces and putting rugs with hot water, it took a night for the smell to disappear.
How dangerous is the smell?

If I put the Terro outside in the balcony at second floor, it may attract other ants in the colony. That's why I may not use it again. But have to resort to putting silicone sealant at all holes. However. Afraid the ants can pass through the third floor to the second floor? Usually how many floors can ants reach just to reach second floor (like through climbing 7 stories high)?
 
  • #8
BillTre
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Note: aluminum is rather reactive, I would not use it in a presence of any substance that has "acid" in the name (unless you plan to post another thread starting with "I put the ant bait on the alufoil, it eat through the foil and left some white residue, what the heck is it?" :wink: ).
OK, noted.
Borek on Borax. :biggrin:
Can't say I have ever had a terro spill of anything more than a drop, but I have not noted any corrosion.
I guess I'll try wax paper next time.
 
  • #9
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ant wing 1.jpg


ant wing 2.jpg


I saw this (it's one taken with different views) in the restroom of the room where I put the 2 pcs of Terro bait that spilled over after 3 days. What is that insect? Is it an ant? An ant queen or male? Or is a a moth? How do you identify it?
 
  • #10
Tom.G
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I vote termite! Especially if there are several.

They are quite common here in Southern California, so common that every wood frame house that is sold gets inspected, and quite often tented and fumigated.

Several years ago I saw a flying one land on a stucco wall and crawl into the wall thru a nail hole that had not been patched.

They tend to hatch in the Spring/Summer when there has been a couple days of rain raising the humidity followed warm and sunny days.

If you see several/many small white eggs, about the diameter of a sewing pin laying around, there is most likely a nest of them above. Although any ant colony will carry their eggs out if the nest is in danger.

Cheers,
Tom
 
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  • #11
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polyvarnish.jpg


https://www.toolstation.com/polyurethane-varnish/p27743

When the Terro borax first spilled, there was no smell. The smell only came out after two hours. The flooring has polyurethane varnish coating.

What is the possible product of
Polyurethane + Boric Acid?

Anything that can create strong smell after they reacted?
 
  • #12
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multi_insect_killer1.jpg


multi_insect_killer2.jpg


This is a multi insect killer spray consisting of Imiprothrin, Prallethrin and Cybermethrin.
I don't want to use Borax. If I just need spray and for specific targets of ants only. Which ingredient must it be that is simplest and safest? Because Prallethrin is used for mosquitoes, but I want for ants only. The source is interior, the ants are living inside a wall, and I can't take it apart just to access the small colony. And don't want to use Terro because of unexpected meltdown.
 
  • #13
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After I removed the Terro baits because it was spilling on the floor. I noticed Pharaot ants in the baseboard near the floor. But when I put new Terro baits. They avoid it now.

What mechanism can they do that? Do they put danger pheronome trails on the paths to the bait? Or talk to each other? (How?) How do they communicate to avoid that specific bait?

And I mixed it with Honey, would the Borax become dilluted that it won't work anymore?
 

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