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carpenter ants and slab on grade


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Posted by meghan on 18:18:53 7/2/2014 from 192.64.57.75:

Hello there!

My husband and I bought a rural property three years ago and built a small house on it two years ago. We have been living in the house for almost two years now and are currently putting on an addition. The existing house is built on a slab and the addition will be as well. For the slab construction of the addition, we had a load of coarse sand brought in. Most of it was spread out where the slab went, but some was spilled around the yard in the moving of the sand. The evening after the sand arrived, I went outside and immediately noticed a lot of carpenter ants. When I looked closer, I saw that they seemed to be all over and emerging from the sand. In the two years living here, we have not seen a single carpenter ant….not one. Then suddenly, there are hundreds around our yard! I spoke to an exterminator who said they didn't come from the sand….what are your thought on that? Is its possible that they did? Since first sighting them about 4 days ago, I have been researching and keeping a close eye on them. When, I go outside now (even at night) I don't see nearly as many. However, when I take a closer look, I see that they are around. I have two small children who love to play outside in the dirt, they have a dirt pile that they like to dig and play in. We sit in it every day and they dig holes….we have never dug up carpenter ants. Now, the pile is spotted with holes and when my children dig, the ants come crawling out. This is not such a concern to me, as my kids don't seem to mind a bit. However, the dirt around the slab has these same holes and upon digging, ants emerge. So, my questions are:

1-could the ants have arrived in the sand?

2-Could the ants in the sand survive being sandwiched between three inches of insulation with vapour barrier and the concrete and be busy making a lovely home under my house?

3-I read on your website that real problems can occur with slabs on grade….this is how our house and addition are built. With the high numbers of ants around, should I be worried and what can I do? Do I need to be worried about the ant activity so close to/under the slab?

4- should I have the play pile of dirt moved? It's about 20' from the house.

Any thoughts on this would be so greatly appreciated. I've been trying not to panic, but insects leave me feeling awfully helpless! Thanks much!



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