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:
May 19 - June 2, 2014 Update
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 973-9524. Mahalo.
- The first full round of treatment was completed at the Waimanalo site with application of granule bait on Thursday, May 22. Treatment will continue for at least 1 year; using Tango every 6 weeks - followed 1 week later with either Probate or Siesta. Monitoring surveys will be conducted the day before each Tango treatment.
- HDOA Plant Quarantine has increased inspections at Aloha Air Cargo. Any material on which LFA is detected will be denied entry. HDOA Plant Pest Control Branch is using data gathered in trace forwards by HDOA Plant Quarantine Branch to identify high priority survey sites.
- Following initial trace forwards in December 2013 and January 2014 to identify the highest priority survey sites, the LFA ICS has developed a prioritized list of 178 initial survey sites on Oahu. LFA ICS partners continue to survey high priority sites and the ICS team uses new information to routinely assess site prioritization and add and survey new sites as needed.
- In the next planning cycle, the LFA ICS Outreach Group is delivering LFA curriculum to 30 middle school students in the Foster Botanical Garden YMCA youth program. The curriculum consists of 1 session for general LFA information and survey training followed by a 2nd session where LFA samples from student-conducted surveys are submitted for ID and mapping exercises. The curriculum has been adapted from the Hoike program developed on Maui and was piloted with the Hui Malama o Ke Kai afterschool program during the last planning cycle. Following this current outreach, the program will be finalized and ready for use when the school year begins in the fall.
- Little fact about Little Fire Ants: There are at least four other tiny, orange/brown/rusty-colored ant species that look very similar to LFA in Hawaii, and can only be distinguished under a microscope by an expert entomologist. That is why it is very important to send in any samples of suspected LFA to HDOA or HAL (on Hawaii Island) for proper identification.