Effect of broadcast baiting on abundance patterns of red imported fire ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) and key local ant genera at long-term monitoring sites in Brisbane, Australia

McNaught, Melinda K, Wylie, F. Ross, Harris, Evan J., Alston, Clair L., Burwell, Chris J, & Jennings, Craig (2014) Effect of broadcast baiting on abundance patterns of red imported fire ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) and key local ant genera at long-term monitoring sites in Brisbane, Australia. Journal of Economic Entomology, 107(4), pp. 1307-1315.

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In 2001, the red imported fire ant (Solenopsis invicta Buren) was identified in Brisbane, Australia. An eradication program involving broadcast bait treatment with two insect growth regulators and a metabolic inhibitor began in September of that year and is currently ongoing. To gauge the impacts of these treatments on local ant populations, we examined long-term monitoring data and quantified abundance patterns of S. invicta and common local ant genera using a linear mixed-effects model. For S. invicta, presence in pitfalls reduced over time to zero on every site. Significantly higher numbers of S. invicta workers were collected on high-density polygyne sites, which took longer to disinfest compared with monogyne and low-density polygyne sites. For local ants, nine genus groups of the 10 most common genera analyzed either increased in abundance or showed no significant trend. Five of these genus groups were significantly less abundant at the start of monitoring on high-density polygyne sites compared with monogyne and low-density polygyne sites. The genus Pheidole significantly reduced in abundance over time, suggesting that it was affected by treatment efforts. These results demonstrate that the treatment regime used at the time successfully removed S. invicta from these sites in Brisbane, and that most local ant genera were not seriously impacted by the treatment. These results have important implications for current and future prophylactic treatment efforts, and suggest that native ants remain in treated areas to provide some biological resistance to S. invicta.

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ID Code: 74844
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Solenopsis invicta, ant abundance, broadcast bait, nontarget impact, red imported fire ant
DOI: 10.1603/EC14008
ISSN: 0022-0493
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES (050000)
Divisions: Current > Institutes > Institute for Future Environments
Current > Schools > School of Mathematical Sciences
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2014 Entomological Society of America
Deposited On: 08 Aug 2014 00:05
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2015 05:29

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