There are several control methods when it comes to fire ants. Since it is not possible to treat all areas that are infested, fire ants cannot be eliminated entirely. As a result, employing biological control methods and using insecticides only where it is economically and environmentally applicable, is the goal of current integrated pest management programs to suppress fire ants as much as possible. Particularly true in large areas, there may not be one best method for fire ant control. We at Snell Scientifics would like to take the opportunity to elaborate on fire ant field testing.

Fire Ant Broadcast Granule Baits

With a few approaches, one is a Two-Step Method for Fire Ant Control that includes broadcast baits. How quickly ants will be controlled and how long the effect will last are determined by the applied bait treatment. Working within 3-10 days, is the faster acting bait products including indoxacarb; within 2-3 weeks when broadcast and works in 7-14 days for mound treatments with hydramethylnon; and within several weeks using Spinosad. When applied in spring this works in 1-2 months and when applied in fall, the abamectin, fenoxycarb, methoprene or pyriproxyfen don’t need to be applied as often since they are slower acting and longer lasting products. Because they act quickly and last longer, products that combine fast- and slow-acting ingredients, like hydramethylnon plush Methoprene are ideal.

Contact Insecticide for Fire Ants

To treat fire ants, there are long residual contact insecticide treatments. A contact insecticide is applied to the lawn and landscape surface with this option. It is more effective in smaller areas because ants that move into treated areas will be eliminated as long as the chemical is active, though this method is usually more expensive than other methods. Where it must be watered in after treatment, the granular products are best applied with a push-type fertilizer spreader. This only one treatment is permitted per year as the granular fipronil products are slower acting but longer lasting. Though it may not eliminate colonies nesting deeper in the soil, faster-acting contact insecticides, like pyrethroids, eliminate ants on the surface for months.

How to Destroy a Fire Ant Mound

Fire ant treatments include individual mound treatments. Being a more suitable approach for small areas with few fire ant mounds (fewer than 20 per acre) or where you want to preserve native ants, though treating ant mounds individually is more labor intensive and may use more insecticide than other methods. Being ideal for treating inaccessible colonies like those nesting under sidewalks, in plant beds and at the bases of tree trunks, the faster acting baits products can be used to treat individual ant mounds. Injectable aerosols, dusts or granules that are watered into the mound are some of the mound treatment products available as liquid drenches. Being that the proper application is essential, ants are killed only if the insecticide makes contact with them. As they do when the temperature is mild, when ants are nesting close to the mound surface, is when these treatments are most effective. During treatment, colonies should not be disturbed.

Fire Ant Field Tests

When it comes to fire ant field testing Snell Scientifics provides a considerable number of in-depth fire ant field tests. Fire ant baits, dusts, sprays, nest-treatments, and more; we run tests year around. With options as long as 12 months or as short as 30 days, Snell Scientifics experts can run tests along with any needs and customize a protocol you may require. Contact Snell Scientifics to discuss testing your fire ant field testing services.