Friday, 29 June 2012

It's a Wild World





Nature is fighting back. It's been twenty one years since we decided to tame a piece of virgin land by creating a house and garden and diverting the natural flora and fauna. Occasionally there is counter attack. I mentioned the mosquitoes last week and now we have discovered a mouse or two in the house.  In an effort to get rid of the rodents, we put a couple of sachets of poison in the kitchen. This had no effect on the mice but attracted thousands of ants who called in all their mates to try and carry away the toxic tea bags in a version of ant olympics. We hastily replaced the poison with a sonic deterrent but the ants didn't go away, in fact I think we have opened an ant disco: they are queuing up at the doors. Any minuscule crumb carelessly cast aside becomes a writhing mass of tiny bodies.  The big ants have taken over outside. I was hanging up my smalls when I felt a sharp pain in my big toe and looked down to see blood spurting over a large black ant that was still chomping at my foot. Kicking that aside, I bent down to grab some more washing and narrowly missed picking up a small brown scorpion.  A timely reminder to shake all towels, shoes and costumes that have been drying outside.  Not all our neighbours are tiny.  Last night when I went out after dark to shut up our workshop, a very close loud grunt and rustle had me running back inside for a husband and torch. I then sent him out first, and as he wildly waved the torch and emitted calls worthy of an alpine yodeler, we heard our porcine visitors running off to the nearby fields.
Putting the finishing touches to this post today, my vision started to go blurry and my left eye began to twitch.  Ever the hypochondriac; brain tumour, stroke and Bell's palsy flashed through my mind before I got to the bathroom mirror... An ant was crawling over my eyelid!





24 comments:

  1. I sympathise. Today I must have disturbed dozens of ants nests while I was attempting to tame some of my garden. I think they all decided to move into my gardening gloves in protest. Good luck with the ants...and the bigger beasts. J.

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    1. Do your ants invade the house too?

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  2. I do so sympathise...and empathise of course as we experience pretty much the same as this in our village. And I wonder if, like me, creepy crawlies bothered you years ago? I was a wimp when it came to dealing with all this. It's amazing how years spent living here has enabled me to overcome my fears and just get on with it.

    Roll on winter!

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    1. I'm OK with all creepy crawlies but I don't like snakes. Have never got used to them.

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  3. . . better than in your pants, Annie! Ants are a tough one to crack, especially the way houses are constructed here. Poisons have to be specific to species. We had a bad time last year and the start of this with pharaoh ants, if you attack the nest and don't utterly destroy it it will split off and create many more - and being genetically identical they will interact so it's like - well you can guess. Eventually cracked the problem by periodically using the aerosol insect killer with the long tube and spraying around every window and door on the outside. Been ant-free ever since. Good luck and watch out for scorpions :-)

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    1. They are everywhere Alan, and I mean everywhere.

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  4. Ohhh, do ants make you bleed when they chomp? Not into that idea. Fortunately, we're by the sea and don't get too many of them. A shame you didn't catch the wild boar. Casserole and spare ribs - now we're talking! :)

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    1. I had a v shaped cut on my toe, as if snipped by a pair of scissors

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  5. Anys here as well...all over the path to the washing line as I discovered when being bitten with a load of damp washing in my arms...would have qualified as a whirling dervish.

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    1. Putting the washing out is beginning to get dangerous.

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  6. Guess one pest's poison is another's meat and potatoes. After reading your story, when you describe your blurry vision and twitching eye, what immediately came to mind was that ant that chomped your toe! Good luck on ridding your living space of these guys.

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  7. The shop behind the market/Tansas has the right stuff I found - you dilute it in a spray bottle. It keeps them away for years.

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  8. Full sympaties to you, especially on the mouse front, ain't no fun..hope they dissapear and leave you in peace soon!

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    1. I think we're winning the battle having taken up the advice above.

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  9. ANTS!!! EEEKKKS!.....We have them here, them lil' ones in my kitchen. We leave nothing on the counters and have tried a pest control company but every summer they are back....The huge Carpenter ants ate my Mulberry tree which had to be cut down.....Them ants I can live with but when I lived in New York city and had to share an apartment with cockroaches...well I freaked every day and couldn't get use to it.
    But the ant on my eyelid would send me off the edge....hope you can get rid of those lil' pests.....have a great day. :-)

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    1. My plum tree suddenly died. I wonder if the ants killed it.

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    2. Do you know them? It is very essential to know carpenter ants for getting rid of them. You have to know how they looks like. For getting rid of carpenter ant we should use proper technique and pesticide.

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  10. Pork chops anyone? Sounds like being on safari! In Bodrum we had ants, cockroaches, mice and rats. We thought of them as our extended family. It was particularly revolting when one rat we attempted to chase out of the house defecated everywhere as he darted hither and thither. Be careful of those pesky scorpions.

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  11. Hello, you know this whole thing--the ants, the mosquitoes, the pigs, the poisonous flowers, all of which you've posted about in the past few days--could be make into a great piece of terrifying sci-fi literature! Peace.

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  12. When we were visiting our family in Turkey, bowls of sugar can be left anywhere uncovered and no ants would come. If I were to do the same in my home, the ants would be in the sugar pot in no time. And recently, we have rented out our guest room to a French student and on a few occasions, I have witnessed big black ants frantically crawling into her room. They are attracted to the empty food wrappers and crumbs on plates she keeps in the room after eating. The ant problem is driving me crazy too! I hope you get yours sorted out soon.

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