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Hawaii Invasive Species Council Communication

Little Fire Ants (LFA) on Oahu 
Biweekly Update


Wasmannia auropunctata on chopstick with peanut butter

In December 2013, The Hawaii Department of Agriculture (HDOA) confirmed that Little Fire Ant (LFA) had spread from Hawaii Island to Oahu and Maui.  An inter-agency team led by HDOA was mobilized to respond to this pest emergency.  This update is specific to the Oahu based response.

Please find below the latest update or click here to view/download as PDF

Contact Randy Bartlett, LFA Response Liaison Officer, with any questions related to this update.
Randy Bartlett: Randal.T.Bartlett@hawaii.gov or (808) 870-6443

*Biweekly LFA updates will be sent to the full HISC Listserv, to opt-out of the updates, please respond to this email indicating you do not wish to receive them.

For more information, click on the links below:


September 8 - 21, 2014
  • In this operational period, the LFA ICS team conducted 4 surveys on priority sites on Oahu.
  • In addition to priority site surveys, on Wednesday September 10, the LFA ICS team completed additional surveying in Mililani-Mauka.  There were 2 residences separate from the current known infestation that were suspect for LFA and required additional surveying to ensure none were present.  A team including HDOA PPC, HDOA PQ, HISC, CGAPS, and UF FWS worked with homeowners in the 2 areas to survey the initial residences of concern as well as the surrounding homes.  All areas were negative for LFA.
  • Full treatments of all residences, greenbelt, and the buffer area of the known Mililani-Mauka infestation were conducted on September 17-19.  Preliminary results are encouraging and residents report having significantly fewer LFA in their houses and yards.
  • Treatment of the Waimanalo infestation occurred on September 17.  During routine monitoring of this site an alate (winged) female was found out in the open.  This is unusual in healthy colonies, and potentially a good indicator that treatments are effective.  It could indicate that workers have stopped feeding an unproductive queen or that not as many workers are available to bring food in.
  • On Saturday September 13, the LFA Outreach Group, in partnership with Waimanalo Resident Tom Grande, conducted a volunteer survey training workshop with 15 participants.  This was in preparation for an LFA Community Monitoring Day scheduled for November 1, 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.  On this day, the trained volunteers will survey roadsides near the existing infestation.  Additionally, members of LFA ICS team will be on hand at the UH Waimanalo Research Station accepting and identifying any ant samples brought in by residents in the community.  There will be a Community Meeting on Wednesday October 15, 7:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. at the Waimanalo Public Library presenting information about LFA and handing out free LFA survey kits.
  • Little fact about Little Fire Ants: LFA nest both on the ground and high up into the trees.  Despite being able to maintain thriving colonies at great heights, they are not very good at hanging on while out foraging, any slight disturbance or breeze can create a rain of ants from the trees.
This report uses the best information available at the time of writing and is not an official record of the project. Its purpose is to update partner agencies and concerned individuals about project progress. Questions regarding information in the report can be addressed by calling the incident command post at 973-9528. Mahalo.
 
NEIL ABERCROMBIE
GOVERNOR OF HAWAII
 
SHAN TSUTSUI
LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR
 


VOTING MEMBERS
 
WILLIAM AILA, JR
DEPARTMENT OF LAND & NATURAL RESOURCES
 
SCOTT ENRIGHT
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
 
GARY GILL
DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH
 
MARIA GALLO, PhD
UNIVERSITY OF HAWAI‘I
 
LEO ASUNCION
DEPARTMENT OF BUSINESS, ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT & TOURISM, OFFICE OF PLANNING
 
DAVID RODRIGUEZ
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
 Your HISC Support Team:

Joshua Atwood, HISC Program Supervisor: 808.587.4154  or Joshua.P.Atwood@hawaii.gov

Randy Bartlett, HISC Interagency Coordinator: 808.870.6443 or Randal.T.Bartlett@hawaii.gov

Emily Montgomery, Planner: 808.587.4185 or Emily.C.Montgomery@hawaii.gov

Copyright © 2014 Hawaii Invasive Species Council, All rights reserved.
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