There are many myths concerning
or colony elimination. None of the foods (grits, oatmeal, etc.) will
cause any type of internal problems with an ant. They do not get fatal
flatulence; they do not blow up --it just does not work that way!
In the first place, adult ants cannot digest solid foods.
Worker ants can be seen going back to their colony with either a swollen
belly (from liquid foods) or carrying a solid piece of food. Solids are
fed to ant larvae in the nursery; larvae digest the solids and
immediately regurgitate the nutrients back to the adult worker ants.
These ants, in turn, feed other ants in the colony. On the average,
each worker ant will feed 10 other ants. This unique transfer of
nutrients insures that any poisons or bad foods are filtered out before
reaching the queen and the workers around her.
Second, ants love corn!
Many farmers have severely
damaged their machinery while running into or over large fireant mounds
in the fields. Thousands of pounds of grain products are tossed into
the trash by home owners each year, because ants invaded the containers
in which grains are stored. Ants love corn and it does not kill
The myth with grits (and other grains) began when the general public
discovered that small grains of ground corn (in essence, grits!) are the
carrier in many ant baits. The carrier is just that -- the product on
which the attractant (soybean oil, etc.) and the pesticide (Hydramethylnon,
etc.) are placed. The carrier is just the vehicle with which we
disperse granular pesticides and baits.
When people dump grits or other such objects onto an ant mound, the ants
do not appreciate the door of their home being disturbed. They then
build another door (mound) to their colony, deserting the one covered
with grains. Ants have many uses for their mound (incubating young,
etc.) and do not appreciate it when you dump things on top! When all
is said and done, the colony did not even move (as most people believe),
it just built another doorway to the colony.