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What is Fire Ant?
Fire Ant originated in Brazil alongside Paraná River and invaded Southern Part North American at the early twenties. It did not catch much attention at that time but people came to experience that such a problem had devastated hugely in the agriculture and economy very seriously. There have been over 13 states over 1 million hectare acreage infested by such a pest. Economy losses are over 5 billion US dollars a year.

The Life Cycle of Fire ants
The life cycle of fire ants include egg, larva, pupa and adult. The caste system is prominent and division of labor is very delicate.

Queen : Queen takes 180 days from an egg to an adult.  She is the most important one in a colony as being the basic reproductive unit that propagates to make up the entire population.  She can bear hundreds to thousands of eggs everyday.  In her lifespan she lives up to 6-7 years and can produce 4500 new queens a year in average.

Male : Male adult takes 180 days in his development, aiming at mating with queen.  After male adult completes his task, he dies eventually. 

Worker & Soldier:  During their development, Small size worker takes 20-45 days, large size worker takes 30-60 days and soldier takes 180 days.  Neither worker nor soldier is capable of producing off-springs.  Normally adults live up around 1-6 months which are responsible for caring about the queen, foraging for food, building hives and protecting the colony.

Mound of Fire Ant
Fire Ants do not have definite mating time in the air and will keep flying from 3 to 5 km then settle down to build a mound. The mound will normally 10-30 cm high can also extend down below ground by 30-50 cm deep. The diameter of mound is around 30-50 cm. Now mound will take 4-9 months to appear where it goes up from the soilng surface. Once they grow mature, they will start up a new colony. Queen and male fly to mat.

Two Basic Types

Single-Queen Type
Within a colony, there is only one queen.  The soldier will guard against other stranger fire ants.  When their colony is well-development, there will 50-240 hundred thousands fire ants.  There will be 200-300 mounds in a hectare the highest.

Multi-Queen Type
Within a colony, there are many queens.  The soldier will not take guarding against their close clan termites from one against the other.    When their colony is well-development, there will 300-500 hundred thousands fire ants.  There will be 1000 mounds in a hectare the highest.

Potential Hazard to Human Beings
Omnivorous Fire Ants will bring harmful effect to the soil borne animals and deplete the earthworm totally. Fire Ants will consume seeds, produces, fruits, seedlings, tender stems and root system. It greatly affects the development of crops and worsen the economy seriously.

Environment Impact
Fire Ant is prevailing in the environment. They prey on a great variety of invertebrates and make seriously drop on their population. Ants are often replaced by the Fire Ants totally in some of their habitats since Fire Ants have advantage in foraging their food. It will assault a wide ranges of animals such as eggs of ground-lodging birds, baby birds, eggs of lizards, baby lizards, small mammals or rodentia.

Public Sanitation
Fire Ant has its norm when it bites human skin to rashes like the burning of fire. It will become blister later. Fire Ants may attain 200-500 hundred thousands in their maximum population. Once they face invasion, they will counterattack very speedily right away. It will use the mandible to bite on the skin and holds the skin in position. Afterward it pierces with its sting into the host 7-8 times to inject the venom under the skin. The venom is consisted of a variety of acids and plenty of venomous proteins that are all harmful to human beings. The skin will experience “burn” over an hour or loathsome in white. When the loath bursts out, it incurs secondary infections in scary marks permanently.

Fire Ant Control

Chemical Control
The innovative chemical control is presently targeted for the specific habits and features of fire ant in order to make such a control over fire ants more effectively.  If we fail to combat over the propagation of the queen within a colony, the control is known as ineffective.  It just works to be curative but not preventive or very soon the population will regain.

First Stage - Baiting
Most of the baits of fire ants are adopted the defatted bean grains mixed with soy oil.  The bait is the bean grains but the pesticide is added into the soy oil that takes to attract ants successfully very often.  However, oil is easily rotten, it tends to lose the attraction if it is not utilized at fresh.  Mostly, there are two types of materials they will use for the pest control – 1. pesticide known as chemicals and 2. bio-pesticide known as Insect growth hormones.  No matter what kind of controlling material we use, the efficacy is normally only 85%-95%.  The prominent difference depends only on when and how fast the diminishing.  Generally, insect growth regulator works more slowly but it can have longer residual effect.

Second Stage –Individual Treatment on the Mound
7-10 days after the disseminating of baits, we choose to apply controlling material no matter it is chemical control or non-chemical control that will take place on the mound.  When we apply no matter with wettable powder, soil drench or granule disposal, we have to ensure the chemicals to reach directly to the fire ant’s body.  Due to the avenging behavior of fire ants, applicators should wear the protective clothing that isolates themselves from the biting of fire ants.

Non-chemical Control Method

Boil Water Method
Use boiled water to pour over the mound.  It attains 60% of control rate.
The volume is around 5-6 liter per mound.  The boiled water has to pour evenly and entirely to every surface of the mound.
Application should be made 5-10 consecutive days instead of just applying once.
During the application, avoid damaging the plants close to the mound.

Water Flood (Detergent Added)
Drain the water with detergent into the mound in which its soil has been previously overturned.  However this method is rather difficult to kill the fire ants entirely.  Overturning the soil of the mound is to make the colony totally unsheltered.  Pour over 15-21 liter detergent water to the place and suffocate the pests over 24 hours.  In the course of agitating the fire ants’ location, alert for the possible assault by them and make sure that you have worn the protective clothing completely.  Avoid to break up the mound.  Wear qualified groove on hand and ready with pesticidal chemicals at hand to spray where requires if necessary in case of facing sudden assault.

There are two prominent bio-controls obtaining the very successful results but yet to develop maturely. Decapitating Fly (Phoridae tricuspis) and Fungus (Beauveria bassiana) are found effective control over fire ants in South American.  Bio-control is unable to annihilate the fire ants totally but at least brings down their competence in which other ants can compete with them to make a balance.

Liquid Nitrogen Method
Liquid Nitrogen at -196∘can be used in killing the fire ant directly.  Use the pressurized liquid to disseminate through their harbors and tunnels in occupying all the space inside the mound.  This sudden solidifying the mound almost kills all the population of fire ants totally.

Treatment After being Stung
Put ice around the wound for a while, rinse with soap and water to the stung wound
Apply corticosteroids or seek medical advice. Take medicine that against the effect of histamine in relief of the swelling and itch.
After being stung, do not burst the blister in avoid of secondary infection.

When hypersensitivity takes place after stinging, itch, mashes, redness or swelling on the face, suffocating, chest pain, blood pressure surges or other typical reaction physiologically, seek medical advice instantly.