Texas Two Step Against Fire Ants

Fire ants swarming sheet of paper. Image: TAMU

Fire ants swarming sheet of paper. Image: TAMU

This is Passport to Texas

The imported red fire ant can ruin a beautiful spring or fall day outdoors.

We typically see most activity in the spring and in the fall. It’s nice, and that’s generally when we like being outside, too, unfortunately.

Elizabeth “Wizzie” Brown, an entomologist with AgriLife Extension says researchers continue to work on ways to manage this non-native pest, which is a threat to wildlife.

We have had things that we’re working on…things like fungus, and there’s organisms that live in the fire ant body that reduce the reproductive capabilities of the fire ants. They have brought in parasitizing flies, that are called phorid flies that they use that attack the fire ants and pretty much eat them from the inside out. So we are working on it, but the fire ants are here—they’re always going to be here; these are just tools in our tool belts to help up manage those populations.

Use the Texas two-step method to combat fire ants… now through mid-October: first, broadcast an insecticide bait across your entire yard, and then treat individual mounds with an approved insecticidal drench, bait, granule or dust.

The Wildlife Restoration program supports our series.

That’s our show… For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

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