File Under: Problems I Never Imagined

Apr 14, 2008

We live in Mexico and we like to cave dive. That means that we take our SUV into the jungle regularly and leave it parked there for a couple hours while we dive in the caves. When we get back from diving, we put all our wet gear into the back of the truck and go home. To accommodate the wet stuff, we removed the back portion of carpet and replaced it with those sort of honeycomb shaped restaurant floor mats, so the water can run through and out the back.

Earlier in the week I got in the car to go to the bank and noticed that there was a line of small ants busily crossing the dashboard. They're the small, fast kind of ant (luckily they're not fire ants or really big enough to bite). I know that ants come after water and there's not much we can do about not having water in the truck and still diving, you know?

When Hans got home later that day I showed him the ant trail. We had some ant powder in the house, so we got it out and determined that the ants were living under the carpet by the driver's side. There's a hole in the carpet with a grommet and they seemed to be coming in and out of that, so we poured the ant powder in the hole and on the shifter and a couple other key places that were on their path.

The next morning we woke up and there was a trail of ants moving across the dashboard, but this time they were all carrying eggs. Moving time! I guess someone fouled up their previous hole. We poured some more powder along their path in hopes that they'd track the powder with them wherever they were moving (which appeared to be inside the passenger side door).

As of the last couple days, there appear to me no more ants. I don't know if this will last or if the babies will hatch and we'll have a new batch of ants to deal with. But for now, no ants...

We asked around to our cave diving buddies and apparently ants are a pretty normal infestation for cars that go into the jungle a lot. One of our friends had a proper ant hill under her seat and had to have her car professionally fumigated! Some other friends finally rented a detached garage to store their scuba gear in after bringing home more than they wanted to from the jungle. ew.


Fned said...

This is why I live in a cold weather country: no ants, no mosquitoes, no lizzards... AND NO COCKROACHES!!!


In any case, I'd never heard of ants taking over your car!!! At least they're a peaceful type of insect...


RiverGirl said...

My husbandito just called from work and said he had a bunch of ants in his car today...

My daughter's GameBoy got infested with ants, no water there and she used it all the time. Weird.

Cinnamon will disrupt their trails also and it's a bit more pleasant to sprinkle around than ant powder.

Great story though, not a problem you would expect.

beachin77 said...

same thing happened to me when i lived in texas. still makes me shiver when i think about it! don't know quite where they came from . . . i didn't go to the jungle!