News

Fire ant fight targeting threatened agriculture

GROUND ZERO: People inspect a fire ant nest after a demonstration in Laidley South to show how the nests are destroyed.
GROUND ZERO: People inspect a fire ant nest after a demonstration in Laidley South to show how the nests are destroyed. Rob Williams

THOSE on the frontline of the fight against fire ants are battling the pests in rural areas where the potential for harm is highest.

Fire ants can significantly affect the agriculture industry with baby animals particularly vulnerable to attacks that can lead to death.

Young animals have also been stung in and around the eyes, which can lead to blindness and around the mouth and nose, which can lead to swelling and suffocation. Fire ants also invade animals' food and water supplies; unable to reach the food or water without being seriously stung, they can starve or dehydrate.

Fire ants sometimes feed on seeds, and can fatally damage plants by tunnelling through roots and stems.

Yesterday, a demonstration of direct injecting fire ant nests was conducted at Laidley by the Biosecurity Queensland Control Centre.

Director Mike Ashton said it involved injecting the mound with a spear rod that injects a knock down chemical called fipronil.

"The perimeter is treated first so all escape tunnels are closed, then the centre is treated to flood the chambers. The surface of the mound is then showered," Mr Ashton said. "The area around the nest is also treated with a corn grit bait containing an insect growth regulator."

The fire ant eradication program started in 2001.

"Of four known incursions into Queensland since that time, two have been eradicated (one in Brisbane and one in Gladstone)," Mr Ashton said.

"The two remaining incursions were discovered in the south western suburbs of Brisbane in 2001 and in Yarwun, Gladstone in 2013. A number of small outlying infestations are located in Ipswich, Logan, Redlands, Scenic Rim and Lockyer Valley.

"Hay production and shipments are of particular concern in the Lockyer Valley region, as bailed hay provides a perfect nesting environment for fire ants.

"Biosecurity Queensland conducts training sessions for individuals and businesses that operate within the fire ant restricted area and deal with restricted items."

To report any suspect ants, phone 132 523 or visit daff.qld.gov.au/fireants.

Fire ant facts

  • Small 2-6 mm.
  • Variety of sizes within each nest
  • Head and body are coppery-brown, abdomen is darker.
  • Aggressive, particularly near the nest.
  • Can inflict a painful sting.

Topics:  biosecurity queensland fire ants



Ipswich train users 'packed in like sardines'

Rail Back on Track's Robert Dow says Ipswich has been 'bashed around' by Queensland Rail in recent months.

Locals not happy with Queensland Rail's reduced services.

'Nardya will not be going home'

On Wednesday the 25-year-old was given a week to live

Yamanto highway project the number one priority, report

The Building Queensland Board's Infrastructure Pipeline report released this month lists the $340 million Yamanto interchange at the top of the list which includes 20 building projects across the state.

Report suggests Cunningham Hwy works among most important projects

Local Partners

Gatton family claims game show success

A GATTON family walked away with more than $11,000 after an exciting three-night run on game show Family Feud.


Big flicks could soon be seen at major shopping centre

PROPOSED DEVELOPMENT: The Mt Ommaney Shopping Centre have lodged an application with the Brisbane City Council to build a new cinema and entertainment precinct.

New entertainment and dining options have residents excited.

Noll meltdown won't affect Gympie Oz Day concert

Shannon Noll

Photo Contributed

Shannon Noll is still expected to perform in Gympie next Thursday

9 things to do this weekend

IT'S ON: Help raise funds for cancer research this weekend at the Ipswich Turf Club. The Shearer Tackles Cancer pig races will still be conducted in the Beer Garden from 12pm.

From music and markets to hiking and swimming, Ipswich has it all

50 Shades actress on why she hates the film

Dornan and Johnson’s frequent sex scenes were ‘awkward’ to film. Picture: SuppliedSource:Supplied

Jamie Dornan doesn’t blame you for hating 50 Shades

Chris Hemsworth’s X-rated compliment to former co-star

Australian actor Chris Hemsworth poses on the red carpet for the European premiere of the film 'Avengers: Age of Ultron' in London on April 21, 2015.

THOR star once paid former Home and Away actress a lewd compliment.

'I can't keep my mouth shut any longer'

Singer George Michael.

George Michael’s cousin blasts singer’s boyfriend Fadi Fawaz.

Fresh faces: NCIS gets a shake up with new cast members

The new cast of NCIS, from left, Rocky Carroll, Pauley Perrette, Sean Murray, David McCallum, Brian Dietzen, Wilmer Valderrama, Emily Wickersham, Mark Harmon, Duane Henry and Jennifer Esposito.

THREE new characters join naval drama for season 14.

First the Onesie, now an Xbox One S inflatable controller

Fancy an inflatable Xbox One S controller?

Inflatable controller 'perfect sidekick' for Australia Day party

Sarah Harris: Here’s what Amber Sherlock should’ve done

Studio 10 and Shark Tank presenter Sarah Harris.

STUDIO 10 host says Sherlock could’ve avoided the subsequent uproar.

WARNING: Builders, clean up "unsightly sites"

Councillor Ireland at a messy building site.

Failure to do so could see builders slapped with fines.

Historical home leaves family's hands after 75 years

SALE CONFIRMED: The Gympie Regional   Realty team which sold the Ramsey property are (back) Mel Gastigar, Dorothy Palmer and Margaret Cochrane, with (front) home seller Terri-Jayne Ramsey.

Ramsey family played a huge role in Gympie's growth.

What a year 2016 proved to be

Entrance Island, Birtinya

Get the inside info from the agents themselves

REVEALED: What Coast wants in an international airport

Sunshine Coast business people share their views on what's needed

Time for a cool change

43 Eckersley Ave, Buderim.

Family home goes to the auction floor

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!