Researchers and scientists have been experimenting with different physical methods to control Fire ants. With the invasions areas of these invading pests on the rise, the damage incurred by them are also on the rise as well as the millions of dollars lost every year across the world. The prime focus of this page is to discuss the physical methods of controlling Fire ants.
One of the new physical methods to control Fire ants is to experiment with extreme temperature change, foe example, injecting liquid nitrogen or pressurized hot steam into their nests. Pouring boiling water into ant mounds has also been found effective in getting rid of them.
One of the folk remedies to control Fire ants physically is to soak the nest in gasoline or kerosene and then putting it on fire. But this can be potentially dangerous and should not be used as a frequent way of controlling Fire ants physically. Moreover, as the queens live several feet underground, the fire cannot reach them.
In Australia, one of the physical methods of controlling Fire ants which is being used effectively is by ground baiting with food laced with contraceptives and toxicants. This tends to make the colony's queen infertile. With the help of satellite imagery and widespread public reporting of suspect colonies, the known infested areas in Australia are declared high risk and the baits were targeted in these areas. People were cautioned as any material being moved or brought from these areas, like soil, potted plants, mulch, potting mix, hay bales, construction machinery, etc could harbor ants. Every material had to be inspected before disposing or moving. They ware sent to transfer stations for examining, treatment and disposal. The six year eradication campaign to control Fire ants physically has cost A$175 million to date.
Certain barriers can also prove to be effective physical methods to control Fire ants, such as duck nesting boxes or greenhouse benches. Talcum powder or spray products can be used on vertical surfaces, but these treatments lose their efficiency in humid or damp conditions. Tanglefoot, a petroleum-based, a gel or aerosol, is sticky material but is effective temporarily until it becomes covered with dust and other debris. Hated plates or wires up to about 140 degrees F can be a successful hot barrier that ants will not cross. These are some of the common methods of controlling Fire ants physically.
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Dragonflies spend considerable time in flight and are aggressive insectivores with large transparent membranous wings and huge compound eyes. This Green Darner is the largest contemporary dragonfly.