Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Development of genetic markers distinguishing two invasive fire ant species (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) and their hybrids.

Abstract

Three single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers were developed that were completely diagnostic in distinguishing the 2 fire ant species Solenopsis invicta Buren and Solenopsis richteri Forel (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Although a 4th marker was not fully diagnostic, it was still useful given that one of the variants was confined to S. richteri. Joint use of these markers was shown to consistently distinguish hybrids from the 2 parental species. The development of these SNP markers distinguishing the 2 introduced fire ant species and their hybrids represents a significant advance over existing methods because this method is robust, easily transferable, and cost effective.