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okay to burn wood infested by carpenter ants?

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by WestVirginian, Feb 17, 2006.

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  1. WestVirginian

    WestVirginian New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2005
    Messages:
    25
    Hi everyone--

    Just found out that my neighbor is have a HUGE tree removed, in part because it is infested with carpenter ants. Would the wood still be good to burn? I'm sort of salivating over all the wood I could get out of it, but don't want it if it's no good.

    If the carpenter ants are a concern in terms of the "burnability" of the wood, then what would I look for when inspecting it?

    Thanks. Ian

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  2. Chuck Pearson

    Chuck Pearson Member

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2005
    Messages:
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    Loc:
    Adrian, MI
    There will be tunnels in it where the ants ate the wood but the uneaten wood should be sound. Cut a few pieces and if they are hard, they are good. You might want to keep the wood outside and bring it in a few pieces at a time directly to the fire. If you keep it in the house or garage, the ants might find another food source.
  3. saichele

    saichele Minister of Fire

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    Nov 18, 2005
    Messages:
    507
    You can definitely burn it, as long as it's not rotted as a result of the infestation. But you don't necessarily want to invite the ants into the house, either. Were it me, and there' still decent hard wood left, I'd leave it on a pile far from the house, preferably away from other tasty trees (pines are OK) and just bring up a wheel barrel or so at a time and burn it weekends.

    I've also heard carpenter ants won;t bother logs if they're split small enough and stacked criss cross fashion, but the guy who told me that definitely ingested too many pesticides in his life.

    Steve
  4. DavidV

    DavidV New Member

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    Nov 20, 2005
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    Loc:
    Richmond VA
    My personal experience has been that the ants leave the wood once you split it.. I have on occation sprayed the wood just a bit with bug spray as well. But usually I split one open then stomp the little monsters as much as I can when they try to get away. In wood that I have split and stacked I have not found any ants once it is dried a year.
  5. wahoowad

    wahoowad Minister of Fire

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    Loc:
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    burn those little fuggers! And store them away from the house. I cut up a gnarly locust deadfall that spilled live ants everywhere when I cut it up. I haven't seen a one on the few pieces I brought inside to burn. I'm not going to store any of it inside either.
  6. elkimmeg

    elkimmeg Guest

    After you split it up and store it outside the remaining ants freeze or just plain leave. Should one make it into your wood stove,
    consider him toast. If you cut it up and split it soon, store in a suny location, It should be ready for prime time next Fall.
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