Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry Exotic Ant Surveillance

4 February 2004

Tauranga residents are asked to be on the look out for any unusual ant activity as the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (MAF) begins intensive surveillance for exotic ants.

MAF is specifically looking for crazy ants, yellow crazy ants and tropical fire ants which have been discovered at a Mount Maunganui container yard during previous surveillance activities.

Programme Coordinator Amelia Pascoe says visual and baited surveillance will occur within a 500 metre radius of the original nest sites. Brochures detailing types of exotic ants to be on the look out for have been sent to properties within a 1.6 kilometre radius.

High risk areas include warm sunny sites close to water sources such as open drains and creeks, dripping taps, leaky water mains, grassy areas, base of trees, under debris, logs, rocks and other areas favourable for ant colonisation.

Over the last three years, as part of its national invasive ant programme, MAF has focussed surveillance and monitoring activity on high-risk areas such as international ports, transitional facilities, container yards and some nurseries.

As a result, the programme has been responsible for the early detection and control of a number of exotic ant species including the eradication of red imported fire ants from Auckland.

Invasive ants have the potential to compete with and prey upon our native species and some ants also are of a public health significance.

MAF needs your help, remember, please call 0800 809 966 if you think you have found any exotic ants.

For more information go to: www.biosecurity.govt.nz/pest-and-disease-response/pests-and-diseases-watchlist

For more information contact:
MAF Senior Communications Adviser Philippa White 04 498 9948 or 027 223 1875

  

 

Last Updated: 28 September 2010

Contact MPI

for general enquiries phone

0800 00 83 33