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QTPA Member Alert |Fire Ants Destroyed in the Lockyer (4/6/2013)

Fire Ants Destroyed in the Lockyer

Biosecurity Queensland has destroyed fire ant nests at four properties within the restricted area in the Lockyer Valley.

Biosecurity Queensland Control Centre director Neil O’Brien said three of the nests were found close to infestations reported last year at Summerholm, Hattonvale and Forest Hill.

“The fourth detection is on a property at Plainland, where we have not previously seen fire ants,” Mr O’Brien said.

“All four nests have been destroyed and preventative bait treatment is currently underway to reduce the threat of further spread in these areas.

“A helicopter has been in the air continuing treatment in Forest Hill, Plainland, Hattonvale and Summerholm.”

Since 2011, there have been 14 fire ant colonies detected and destroyed in the Lockyer Valley.

“I congratulate the Lockyer Valley community for promptly reporting these new infestations to Biosecurity Queensland,” Mr O’Brien said.

“Biosecurity Queensland is continuing to work extensively with the Lockyer Valley Regional Council and other nearby Councils, businesses and the community to raise awareness about fire ants in the Lockyer Valley.”

So far, Biosecurity Queensland has directly contacted 12,000 businesses and residents about fire ant operations in the Mulgowie, Hattonvale, Summerholm and Forest Hill regions, and have provided a further 11,500 residents and businesses with fire ant identification materials.

Staff from the Fire Ant program have attended 19 community events, provided 14 training sessions for Council and industry personnel, and conducted public talks and school visits, and have been rolling out a program of joint community engagement activities with the Council.

Mr O’Brien said he was impressed with the support from all local Councils, businesses and community and was encouraging everyone in the Lockyer and surrounding communities to continue to report any suspect ant activity.

“Early reporting and detection of any fire ant nests is paramount to successful eradication of fire ants,” he said.

“In 2012-13, the fire ant program conducted 10,000 hectares of remote sensing surveillance in the Lockyer Valley. These four new infestations were not present last year, suggesting they only recently became established.”

Mr O’Brien said the fire ant program had planned multiple passes of remote sensing surveillance in the region to ensure all infestation was detected.

“Between now and 30 June 2014, remote sensing imagery will be captured across 12 suburbs in the Lockyer Valley and in other areas within the Somerset, Ipswich and Scenic Rim areas,” he said.

For more information on fire ants, or to book a site inspection for soil disturbances or movement of high-risk materials, visit or call 13 25 23.


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