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Baby powder

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5 replies to this topic

#1 Offline GOCAMPONOTUS - Posted February 13 2024 - 8:28 PM

GOCAMPONOTUS

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I am planing on using baby powder and rubbing alcohol mix and the baby powder I got has corn starch. I read that corn starch is harmful for ants, is this true?



Currently keeping
1.Camponotus vicinus. 5 workers
2.Camponotus modoc. 5 workers
3. Camponotus hyatti. 1 worker
4.Veromessor pergandei. founding
5 Linepithema humile. 70-100 workers 5 queens
6. Pheidole Californica. 65 workers

I want: Atta,Myrmecia,Myrmica,Myrmecocystus

#2 Offline Artisan_Ants - Posted February 14 2024 - 4:52 AM

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I mean, I don’t use this kind of barrier for my ants, but yes indeed, cornstarch is dangerous and can kill ants, but usually under water since it reacts to form some kind of concrete-like substance. But under alcohol, it does not dissolve, nor separate; thus causing no reaction. But anyways, the cornstarch won’t be harmful to them, unless in contact with water. But again, I don’t use this barrier myself, but I do know that other keepers use this.

Keeping:

3x - S. molesta 

1x - C. chromaiodes

2x - F. pallidefulva

2x - C. cerasi

1x - B. depilis

2x P. imparis (colonies) 3x P. imparis queens (1x queen in test tube, 3x queens in test tube, and 6x queens in another test tube. Can't wait to see the results!)

 

Check out my C. chromaiodes journal here: https://www.formicul...aiodes-journal/


#3 Offline GOCAMPONOTUS - Posted February 14 2024 - 7:45 AM

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thanks



Currently keeping
1.Camponotus vicinus. 5 workers
2.Camponotus modoc. 5 workers
3. Camponotus hyatti. 1 worker
4.Veromessor pergandei. founding
5 Linepithema humile. 70-100 workers 5 queens
6. Pheidole Californica. 65 workers

I want: Atta,Myrmecia,Myrmica,Myrmecocystus

#4 Offline futurebird - Posted February 14 2024 - 9:08 AM

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Be careful with the alcohol! It's used to help the mixture to evaporate more quickly, but the fumes will kill most insects instantly. When people do field work they use a little bottle with and alcohol soaked cotton ball to quickly kill insects for pinning! So consider your outworld, and enclosed space... then smearing the sides and lid with this fumigant. I know of one guy who tried to add a barrier for a living colony and he killed 100s of ants. 

Once the stuff dries I think it's mostly harmless. This is the advantage of fluon, it evaporates more slowly but poses no danger to ants as this happens. Apply the barrier and let it dry when the ants are not around. Seal them in their nest and do it away from the colony.  If I'm telling you something you already know that's great, I think most people know this, but I also know people often read this forum for answers without posting... so I want this warning to be here.


  • rptraut, ZATrippit and Artisan_Ants like this

Starting this July I'm posting videos of my ants every week on youTube.

I like to make relaxing videos that capture the joy of watching ants.

If that sounds like your kind of thing... follow me >here<


#5 Offline rptraut - Posted February 14 2024 - 12:54 PM

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Hello GOCAMPONOTUS;

 

I've tried using alcohol mixed with baby powder as a barrier, but it never seemed to work that well for me.  There never seemed to be enough loose powder for ants to lose their grip.   So, this is what I do now.  It works well for my Camponotus colonies with open top outworlds, and I don't think it'll matter if there's cornstarch in the powder or not.    First, I apply a strip of heavy mineral oil (available at your local pharmacy) wherever I want the barrier, it doesn't take a lot, just enough so the powder will stick to it.   Then I dip a cotton ball in the loose baby powder and dab it on the oil.  I reload the cotton ball each time and apply an even coating of powder.   If done gently, very little loose powder falls down into the outworld, but if it does, I can usually just blow or vacuum it out, or a small piece of paper held underneath will catch any loose powder that falls.  In this way I can have a nice, neat, narrow band of powder at the top that doesn't detract too much from the look of the setup and ants can't cross it.   I don't like to see ants on the walls of their outworlds, so I usually also put a band of mineral oil at the bottom of walls, to deter ants from climbing them in the first place.   The powder at the top is meant to be the last resort to prevent escapes.

 

This may seem like a lot of fiddly work, but I only do this once a year at the beginning of the season and after that I just touchup spots where ants continually try to climb and eventually wear away the powder.   This doesn't happen very often, when it does, I look for reasons why they want to escape.   I've found that sometimes it's got nothing to do with escape, but that it's often the same neurotic ants whose lifetime mission seems to be to climb that spot on the wall.    Removing those particular ants from the setup often ends that type of climbing problem.

RPT


My father always said I had ants in my pants.

#6 Offline ReignofRage - Posted February 14 2024 - 4:40 PM

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Corn starch will not act as a barrier if you try to apply it with alcohol, it will gunk up and not act as a barrier. You have to use talcum powder. You can either buy straight talcum powder, talcum-based baby powder, intertube talcum powder, tire talcum powder, etc.







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