We have hundreds of ants in our trees that are leaving like a saw dust material all over along the tree and on the ground. Am able to see huge holes higher on the tree where we are seeing the ant trails go. What type of ants are they and what can we do to get arid of them. Looks like they are killing our 30 plus yr old trees. Limbs are starting to fall with fear that the main trunk may go soon. What to do? HELP
There are many kinds of ants which will readily infest unprotected trees. Most will forage on trees feeding on smaller insects like aphids, whiteflies and mealybugs. But some are wood destroying ants like the Carpenter and Acrobat species. These ants will usually target older trees or trees that are diseased, deformed, damaged or vulnerable for one reason or another. If left to nest as they wish, the constant drilling and chewing will no doubt bring the end of the trees life much earlier than normal.
Treating the tree with a liquid spray is usually the most direct way to take care of the problem. One of the best products for this treatment is the BIFEN CONCENTRATE. Odorless, easy to use and because it demonstrates no phytotoxicity to plants, it should be broadcast onto the trunk of the tree where you see activity. Most any sprayer will do the job but if you don't have one that can reach high enough, the TROMBONE SPRAYER is perfect for most applications since it can reach so high. Treat every two weeks till you no longer see activity. Retreat during the summer to insure none return. In general, you should get 1-2 months of protection when treating for maintenance (no activity is present). But when ants are active, apply some more frequently till the nests are destroyed.
Here are direct links to the information and products listed above:
Bifen Concentrate: http://www.bugspray.com/item/bifen_it.html
Trombone Sprayer: http://www.gotosprayer.com/sprayers/pump-sprayers/trombone-pump