ABILENE, TEXAS (KTAB/KRBC)- The saying “when it rains it pours” is quite literal when it comes to fire ants here in the Big Country.
“This summer was hot and dry, we probably didn’t see as many fire ants because they usually burrow down deep in the soil,” said Steve Estes, County Extension Agent for Agricultural & Natural Resources.
Ants are buried under ground during the summer.
“So, you think well maybe I don’t have fire ants, but as soon as we get a rain they like to come back to the top of the surface,” said Estes.
President of Pest Patrol Weldon Hurts says that this weather is when the ants like to grow their colony. “That’s when they build the mounds to push the larva up to make their small ones mature quicker,” said Hurts.
This is why after the rain we’ve seen, we’re seeing more mounds pop up. Luckily there are several ways to prevent these pesky colonies from growing.
“We call it the Texas two-step method. You use a broadcast bate,” said Estes. A product you put with your fertilizer, so when the ants roam, they bring back pieces of it into the colony.
“And then come back and treat individual mounds as needed,” said Estes.
Or if you prefer natural remedies, we have one for you one we’ve shared before and you may have the ingredients in your kitchen.
Mix 2 tablespoons of blackstrap molasses with two tablespoons of orange essential oil. Pour it into a gallon water jug and shake it up.
When you’re done with the homemade concoction pour it in the problem areas of your yard, and it’s sure to rain on the ants’ parade.