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April 06, 2004

The Ants Go Marchin'

I haven't actually seen the ants go marchin' three-by-three through the kitchen yet, but I'm sure we're not far off.

Tomi and I have lived most of our ten years together in Vancouver highrise condos, so insects, spiders, and ants have never really been a problem. Well, welcome to ground-level living. It never really occured to me that there might be a downside to being surrounded by such beautiful green / garden space. Of course, now we know different.

We have ants. Aplenty.

And not your regular little brown or red ants that are easily squashable. These are BIG ass African Army ants. I'm sure of it.

Big. Mean. And ugly. And they scoff at squashing.

Ok, they're more likely to be carpenter ants, but they're pretty scary nonetheless. If you are Tomi, anyway.

Tomi has a distinct aversion to creepy crawlers, in general. Spiders, in particular, elicit shrieks even in a middle-of-the-night trip to the washroom.

To her credit, Tomi is actually adapting to our new multi-legged adversary. She has even murdered a few herself.

As for Ella? At 14+ months, she's just very curious as always. Our first joint encounter sums it up. She saw an animal. It was big and juicy-looking. Well, her inner carnivore kicked in and she tried to snack on the not-so little guy.

I wonder if it's just coincidence that since that episode, the ants have been kind of scarce. I purposely let that one ant (Ella's almost-snack) crawl away to freedom because I remembered reading somewhere that ants report back on danger to their colony.

I can just imagine the terrified ant's report to the ant general:

<begin ant-speak here>

"I failed in my mission, Sir. But it wasn't my fault. There was this MASSIVE, drooly, wobbly giant chasing after me. I barely escaped with my life. Going back there would be a suicide mission."

Well, we can only hope.

Posted by go-Daddy-O at 09:11 PM in Rants, Rants, Rants | Permalink

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Comments

We used to get ants in the summertime at my parents' house in Kentucky. My mother would -- I kid you not -- go after the little guys with a rolling pin. Just roll it right along the counter, to the most horriffic crunching sound you ever heard. I think I inherited her sadistic tendencies, unfortunately: when we lived in Chicago, I used to squish baby cockroaches with my bare thumb.

Posted by: rachel | Apr 7, 2004 7:59:32 AM

As a teenager, I'd lie in my dark, cave-like, basement bedroom, and listen to the ants drop from the open ceiling onto the heat register. Big ass carpenter ants they were! And, yes, I'm sure they fell into my bed as I slept. And, yes, I will probably relive my teenage ant-mares tonight...

Posted by: penny | Apr 7, 2004 11:49:20 PM

We had nasty big ants in our Burnaby kitchen a few years ago. We talked to some exterminators, and they reported that, while they could try something, it was just a bad ant season, and when the weather changed, the ants would make their way out.

In the meantime, we cleaned up spills, sealed off food, and did some judicious squishing and spreading of Insectigone diatomaceous earth (made of the little glass skeletons of tiny marine invertebrates, and harmless to people unless you get it in your eye or something).

And, miraculously, the ants did go away.

The mice (don't get me started) took more work, mostly involving poison traps and steel wool in openings outside the house, but we haven't seen either the rodents or the colonial arthropods since, and it's been five years.

You never get rid of all the spiders, but that's a good thing: they eat insects like ants and mosquitoes.

Posted by: Derek | Apr 9, 2004 11:26:52 PM

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