TerraForums Venus Flytrap, Nepenthes, Drosera and more talk
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I personally don't like the idea of that. So when it happened to my ampullaria 2 years back, I used some anti-ant pellets (the type that one ant eats and dies, another ant eats this ant and dies...followed by the entire colony). So far, no ants in my study room.
I freaked out when I saw them moving their nest from one pot to another...the ants were carrying their eggs!!! <shivers>
When i had my N. tobaica producing green pitchers last summer, large colonies of ants seemed to be attracted by the sweet nectar of the tobaica's pitchers. All the ants eventually fell into the pitchers and my plant had a wonderful meal!!
Personally, I would get rid of the ants. The ants themselves may not feed on the roots of the plants, but there is the possibility that the ants may introduce fungus spores into your nep pot. I have the unpleasant experience of ants building their nest in one of my slipper orchids and the whole roots ball started to be disgested by fungus.
In addition, the ants may also bring in unwanted pests like mealy bugs or soft scale insects into their nest. These pest suck on plant sap and as plant sap is very low in nutrients, they have to process large amount of sap everyday. The excess sap is excreted by the insects and are still sweet. As you can well imagine, the ants will readily feed on the excretment of the pest and will protect them, because they are the ant's food source. This mutualistic relationship may cause the demise of your plants.
Ah. Now that does sound like a problem. Any efficient, surefire way of getting rid of them? Do you think the heavy downpour today might have flushed them out of the LFS, or simply made them burrow deeper?
Well, it appears the ants have migrate after the heavy rains we received today. I submerged the pot in some water to thoroughly soak the sphagnum, but no ants came scurrying out.
I think Gugin hit the nail right on the head. Ants can spread not only obvious pests such as scale but can probably spread some types of fungal spores between plants. So if you have one diseased leaf in your collection the spores may be distributed by the ants.
Some Neps are unbelieveably efficient at consuming ants. N. mirabilis pitchers, for example, are so attractive to ants that they march in all day long until the pitchers are nearly full.