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Datasheet

Wasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant)

Summary

  • Last modified
  • 13 July 2018
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Invasive Species
  • Pest
  • Natural Enemy
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Wasmannia auropunctata
  • Preferred Common Name
  • little fire ant
  • Taxonomic Tree
  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •   Kingdom: Metazoa
  •     Phylum: Arthropoda
  •       Subphylum: Uniramia
  •         Class: Insecta
  • Summary of Invasiveness
  • Wasmannia auropunctata (the little fire ant) is blamed for reducing species diversity, reducing overall abundance of flying and tree-dwelling insects, and elim...

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Pictures

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PictureTitleCaptionCopyright
Wasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adult. Smithfield, Cairns, Queensland, Australia. July, 2006. Museum specimen. Body length approx. 1.5 mm, reddish to golden brown. Workers are monomorphic. Antennae consist of 11 segments, the last two forming a distinct club. Antennal scrobes are well marked and extend almost to the occipital border. Head and thorax are heavily sculptured with grooves and pits. Epinotal spines are set close together at the base, strongly diverging and slightly incurved when seen from above. Node of the petiole is rectangular in profile and higher than the post-petiole. The erect body hairs are long, coarse and rather sparse. The strongly quadrate lateral profile of the petiolar node is unique to this species.
TitleAdult
CaptionWasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adult. Smithfield, Cairns, Queensland, Australia. July, 2006. Museum specimen. Body length approx. 1.5 mm, reddish to golden brown. Workers are monomorphic. Antennae consist of 11 segments, the last two forming a distinct club. Antennal scrobes are well marked and extend almost to the occipital border. Head and thorax are heavily sculptured with grooves and pits. Epinotal spines are set close together at the base, strongly diverging and slightly incurved when seen from above. Node of the petiole is rectangular in profile and higher than the post-petiole. The erect body hairs are long, coarse and rather sparse. The strongly quadrate lateral profile of the petiolar node is unique to this species.
Copyright©PaDIL/Simon Hinkley & Ken Walker/Museum Victoria - CC BY 3.0 AU
Wasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adult. Smithfield, Cairns, Queensland, Australia. July, 2006. Museum specimen. Body length approx. 1.5 mm, reddish to golden brown. Workers are monomorphic. Antennae consist of 11 segments, the last two forming a distinct club. Antennal scrobes are well marked and extend almost to the occipital border. Head and thorax are heavily sculptured with grooves and pits. Epinotal spines are set close together at the base, strongly diverging and slightly incurved when seen from above. Node of the petiole is rectangular in profile and higher than the post-petiole. The erect body hairs are long, coarse and rather sparse. The strongly quadrate lateral profile of the petiolar node is unique to this species.
AdultWasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adult. Smithfield, Cairns, Queensland, Australia. July, 2006. Museum specimen. Body length approx. 1.5 mm, reddish to golden brown. Workers are monomorphic. Antennae consist of 11 segments, the last two forming a distinct club. Antennal scrobes are well marked and extend almost to the occipital border. Head and thorax are heavily sculptured with grooves and pits. Epinotal spines are set close together at the base, strongly diverging and slightly incurved when seen from above. Node of the petiole is rectangular in profile and higher than the post-petiole. The erect body hairs are long, coarse and rather sparse. The strongly quadrate lateral profile of the petiolar node is unique to this species.©PaDIL/Simon Hinkley & Ken Walker/Museum Victoria - CC BY 3.0 AU
Wasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adult, lateral view. Note scale for this very small ant. Museum specimen. USA.
TitleAdult
CaptionWasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adult, lateral view. Note scale for this very small ant. Museum specimen. USA.
Copyright©Eli Sarnat/PIAkey: Invasive Ants of the Pacific Islands/USDA APHIS ITP/Bugwood.org - CC BY-NC 3.0 US
Wasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adult, lateral view. Note scale for this very small ant. Museum specimen. USA.
AdultWasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adult, lateral view. Note scale for this very small ant. Museum specimen. USA.©Eli Sarnat/PIAkey: Invasive Ants of the Pacific Islands/USDA APHIS ITP/Bugwood.org - CC BY-NC 3.0 US
Wasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adult, at peanut butter bait. Makira, Solomon Islands.
TitleAdult at bait
CaptionWasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adult, at peanut butter bait. Makira, Solomon Islands.
Copyright©Eli Sarnat/PIAkey: Invasive Ants of the Pacific Islands/USDA APHIS ITP/Bugwood.org - CC BY-NC 3.0 US
Wasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adult, at peanut butter bait. Makira, Solomon Islands.
Adult at baitWasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adult, at peanut butter bait. Makira, Solomon Islands.©Eli Sarnat/PIAkey: Invasive Ants of the Pacific Islands/USDA APHIS ITP/Bugwood.org - CC BY-NC 3.0 US
Wasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adult, face. Note scale for this very small ant. Museum specimen. USA.
TitleAdult
CaptionWasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adult, face. Note scale for this very small ant. Museum specimen. USA.
Copyright©Eli Sarnat/PIAkey: Invasive Ants of the Pacific Islands/USDA APHIS ITP/Bugwood.org - CC BY-NC 3.0 US
Wasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adult, face. Note scale for this very small ant. Museum specimen. USA.
AdultWasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adult, face. Note scale for this very small ant. Museum specimen. USA.©Eli Sarnat/PIAkey: Invasive Ants of the Pacific Islands/USDA APHIS ITP/Bugwood.org - CC BY-NC 3.0 US
Wasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adults in the field on a tree. Honiara, Solomon Islands.
TitleAdult
CaptionWasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adults in the field on a tree. Honiara, Solomon Islands.
Copyright©Eli Sarnat/PIAkey: Invasive Ants of the Pacific Islands/USDA APHIS ITP/Bugwood.org - CC BY-NC 3.0 US
Wasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adults in the field on a tree. Honiara, Solomon Islands.
AdultWasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adults in the field on a tree. Honiara, Solomon Islands.©Eli Sarnat/PIAkey: Invasive Ants of the Pacific Islands/USDA APHIS ITP/Bugwood.org - CC BY-NC 3.0 US
Wasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adults in the field on a tree. Honiara, Solomon Islands.
TitleAdults
CaptionWasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adults in the field on a tree. Honiara, Solomon Islands.
Copyright©Eli Sarnat/PIAkey: Invasive Ants of the Pacific Islands/USDA APHIS ITP/Bugwood.org - CC BY-NC 3.0 US
Wasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adults in the field on a tree. Honiara, Solomon Islands.
AdultsWasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adults in the field on a tree. Honiara, Solomon Islands.©Eli Sarnat/PIAkey: Invasive Ants of the Pacific Islands/USDA APHIS ITP/Bugwood.org - CC BY-NC 3.0 US
Wasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adults, in laboratory, at peanut butter bait. Note scale in mm. Makira, Solomon Islands.
TitleAdults at bait
CaptionWasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adults, in laboratory, at peanut butter bait. Note scale in mm. Makira, Solomon Islands.
Copyright©Eli Sarnat/PIAkey: Invasive Ants of the Pacific Islands/USDA APHIS ITP/Bugwood.org - CC BY-NC 3.0 US
Wasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adults, in laboratory, at peanut butter bait. Note scale in mm. Makira, Solomon Islands.
Adults at baitWasmannia auropunctata (little fire ant); adults, in laboratory, at peanut butter bait. Note scale in mm. Makira, Solomon Islands.©Eli Sarnat/PIAkey: Invasive Ants of the Pacific Islands/USDA APHIS ITP/Bugwood.org - CC BY-NC 3.0 US

Identity

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Preferred Scientific Name

  • Wasmannia auropunctata (Roger)

Preferred Common Name

  • little fire ant

Other Scientific Names

  • Hercynia panamana (Enzmann 1947)
  • Ochetomyrmex auropunctatum (Forel 1886)
  • Ochetomyrmex auropunctatus (Roger)
  • Tetramorium auropunctatum (Roger 1863)
  • Wasmannia glabra (Santschi 1931)
  • Xiphomyrmex atomum (Santschi 1914)

International Common Names

  • English: cocoa tree-ant; fire, ant, little; little introduced fire ant; little red fire ant; small fire ant; West Indian stinging ant
  • Spanish: albayalde; hormiga roja; hormiguilla; pequeña hormiga de fuego; satánica
  • French: formi électrique; fourmi électrique; petit fourmi de feu
  • Portuguese: formiga pixixica

Local Common Names

  • Gabon: sangunagenta; tsangonawenda
  • Germany: Rote Feuerameise

EPPO code

  • WASMAU (Wasmannia auropunctata)

Summary of Invasiveness

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Wasmannia auropunctata (the little fire ant) is blamed for reducing species diversity, reducing overall abundance of flying and tree-dwelling insects, and eliminating arachnid populations. It is also known for its painful stings. On the Galapagos, it eats the hatchlings of tortoises and attacks the eyes and cloacae of the adult tortoises. It is considered to be perhaps the greatest ant species threat in the Pacific region. This species has been nominated as among 100 of the "World's Worst" invaders.

Taxonomic Tree

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  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •     Kingdom: Metazoa
  •         Phylum: Arthropoda
  •             Subphylum: Uniramia
  •                 Class: Insecta
  •                     Order: Hymenoptera
  •                         Family: Formicidae
  •                             Genus: Wasmannia
  •                                 Species: Wasmannia auropunctata

Description

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Little fire ant (Wasmannia auropunctata) workers are monomorphic, which means they display no physical differentiation (Holway et al. 2002). The ants are typically small to medium-sized, with the workers ranging from 1-2mm (Longino and Fernández, 2007; Holway et al. 2002). The little fire ant is light to golden brown in colour. The gaster is often darker. The pedicel, between the thorax and gaster, has two segments; the petiole and postpetiole. The petiole is "hatchet-like," with a node that is almost rectangular in profile and higher than the postpetiole. The antenna has 11 segments, with the last two segments greatly enlarged into a distinct club. The antennal scape (the first segment) is received into a distinct groove (scrobe) that extends almost to the posterior border of the head. The thorax has long and sharp epinotal spines. The body is sparsely covered with long, erect hairs. This species is well-known for a painful sting, seemingly out of proportion to its size.

Please click on AntWeb: Wasmannia auropunctata for more images and assistance with identification. The AntWeb image comparison tool lets you compare images of ants at the subfamily, genus, species or specimen level. You may also specify which types of images you would like to compare: head, profile, dorsal, or label. Please see the PaDIL (Pests and Diseases Image Library) species content page for Electric ant for high quality diagnostic and overview images.

Please follow this link for a fully illustrated Lucid key to common invasive ants [Hymenoptera: Formicidae] of the Pacific Island region [requires the most recent version of Java installed]. The factsheet on Wasmannia auropunctata contains an overview, diagnostic features, comparison charts, images, nomenclature and links (Sarnat, 2008).

Distribution

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Native range: The little fire ant (Wasmannia auropunctata) is native to Central and South America (Wetterer and Porter, 2003; Holway et al. 2002).
Known introduced range: It has been introduced into parts of Africa (including Gabon and Cameroon), North America (including Canada) and South America. It has been introduced onto some islands in the Caribbean and the Pacific Ocean (including New Caledonia, Vanuatu, Tahiti and some islands in the Galapagos, Hawai‘ian and Solomon islands) (McGlynn 1999; Roque-Albelo and Causton 1999; Holway et al. 2002; J. K. Wetterer pers. comm., 2003; E. Loeve pers. comm., 2004).

Distribution Table

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The distribution in this summary table is based on all the information available. When several references are cited, they may give conflicting information on the status. Further details may be available for individual references in the Distribution Table Details section which can be selected by going to Generate Report.

Continent/Country/RegionDistributionLast ReportedOriginFirst ReportedInvasiveReferenceNotes

Asia

IsraelPresentIntroducedFirst recorded 2006 Invasive ISSG, 2011
MalaysiaPresent
PhilippinesPresent

Africa

CameroonPresentIntroducedBefore 1959 Invasive Greathead and Greathead, 1992; ISSG, 2011
GabonPresentIntroducedBefore 1914 Invasive ISSG, 2011

North America

BermudaPresentIntroduced1925ISSG, 2011
CanadaPresentCAB Abstracts
-British ColumbiaPresentIntroduced1994 Invasive ISSG, 2011
-ManitobaPresentIntroduced1977 Invasive ISSG, 2011
-OntarioPresentIntroduced1978 Invasive ISSG, 2011
-QuebecPresentIntroduced1999 Invasive ISSG, 2011
MexicoPresentNative Not invasive ISSG, 2011
USAPresentCAB ABSTRACTS Data Mining 2001
-CaliforniaPresentIntroduced1936 Invasive ISSG, 2011
-FloridaPresentIntroduced Invasive ISSG, 2011
-HawaiiPresentIntroduced1999 Invasive ISSG, 2011

Central America and Caribbean

BahamasPresentIntroduced1951ISSG, 2011
BarbadosPresentNative Not invasive ISSG, 2011
Costa RicaPresentNative Invasive ISSG, 2011
CubaPresentNative Not invasive ISSG, 2011
Dominican RepublicPresentNative Not invasive ISSG, 2011
GrenadaPresentNative Not invasive ISSG, 2011
GuadeloupePresentNativeISSG, 2011
GuatemalaPresentNative Invasive ISSG, 2011
HaitiPresentNative Not invasive ISSG, 2011
HondurasPresentNative Not invasive ISSG, 2011
JamaicaPresentNative Not invasive ISSG, 2011
MartiniquePresentNativeISSG, 2011
NicaraguaPresentNative Not invasive ISSG, 2011
PanamaPresentNative Not invasive ISSG, 2011
Puerto RicoPresentNative Invasive ISSG, 2011
Saint LuciaPresentNativeISSG, 2011
Saint Vincent and the GrenadinesPresentNativeISSG, 2011
Trinidad and TobagoPresentNative Invasive ISSG, 2011

South America

ArgentinaPresentNativeISSG, 2011
BoliviaPresentNative Not invasive ISSG, 2011
BrazilPresentNative Invasive ISSG, 2011
-AmazonasPresentNativeISSG, 2011
-BahiaPresent
-CearaPresentNativeISSG, 2011
-Mato GrossoPresentNativeISSG, 2011
-Mato Grosso do SulPresentNativeISSG, 2011
-Minas GeraisPresentNativeISSG, 2011
-ParaibaPresentNativeISSG, 2011
-ParanaPresentNativeISSG, 2011
-Rio de JaneiroPresentNativeISSG, 2011
-Rio Grande do NortePresentNativeISSG, 2011
-Rio Grande do SulPresentNativeISSG, 2011
-RondoniaPresentNativeISSG, 2011
-Santa CatarinaPresentNativeISSG, 2011
-Sao PauloPresentNativeISSG, 2011
ColombiaPresentNative Invasive ISSG, 2011
EcuadorPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-Galapagos IslandsPresentIntroduced1910s Invasive ISSG, 2011
French GuianaPresentNative Not invasive ISSG, 2011
GuyanaPresentNative Not invasive ISSG, 2011
ParaguayPresentNative Not invasive ISSG, 2011
PeruPresentNative Not invasive ISSG, 2011
SurinamePresentNative Not invasive ISSG, 2011
UruguayPresentNative Not invasive ISSG, 2011
VenezuelaPresentNativeISSG, 2011

Europe

UKPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-England and WalesPresentIntroduced1907 Invasive ISSG, 2011

Oceania

AustraliaPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-QueenslandRestricted distributionIntroducedMay 2006 Invasive ISSG, 2011
Cook IslandsAbsent, unreliable recordIntroduced Invasive ISSG, 2011
FijiPresentIntroduced Invasive ISSG, IUCN SSC Invasive Species Specialist Group; ISSG, 2011
French PolynesiaPresentIntroduced1990s Invasive IPPC, 2006; ISSG, 2011
New CaledoniaPresentIntroduced1960s Invasive ISSG, 2011
New ZealandAbsent, intercepted onlyIntroduced Invasive ISSG, 2011
Solomon IslandsPresentIntroducedBefore 1974 Invasive ISSG, 2011
TuvaluPresentIntroducedBefore 1995 Not invasive ISSG, 2011
VanuatuIntroduced, establishedIntroduced~1996 Invasive ISSG, IUCN SSC Invasive Species Specialist Group; IPPC, 2005; ISSG, 2011
Wallis and Futuna IslandsPresentIntroducedBefore 1981 Invasive ISSG, 2011

History of Introduction and Spread

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Bruneau de Miré (1969) reported W. auropunctata from the coastal region of Cameroon near Kribi, where cacao (Theobroma cacao) growers purposely transported W. auropunctata colonies from plantation to plantation as a biological control agent of certain insect pests, particularly Miridae (Hemiptera). (Bruneau de Miré 1969). In areas with W. auropunctata, populations of most insects, including beetles, flies, and other ants, were reduced. In contrast, populations of plant-feeding bugs (Homoptera) that the ants tends, such coccids and psyllids, increased (Bruneau de Miré, 1969 in Wetterer & Porter, 2003). Similarly MacFalane (1985 in Way & Bolton 1997) considered W. auropunctata useful as a natural enemy of crop pests in Solomon Islands (Wetterer & Porter, 2003).

Habitat

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Invasive ants will usually readily invade disturbed habitats, such as forest edges, agricultural fields (Ness and Bronstein 2004), and cities (Wetterer and Porter, 2004; Ness and Bronstein, 2004; Foucaud et al., 2009). In natural environments the little fire ant (Wasmannia auropunctata) efficiently exploits twigs, leaf litter and for its nesting substrate, while in houses it may infest beds, furniture and food (Smith 1965, in Brooks and Nickerson 2000; Armbrecht and Ulloa-Chacón 2003). In some regions, nests are frequently found behind the sheaths of palms or palmettos. During heavy rains, nests may be moved into buildings or trees to escape flooding (Hedges 1998, in Brooks and Nickerson 2000).

Cold climates appear to be unsuitable for the successful invasion and establishment of W. auropunctata in native ecosystems. However, it is able to colonize and become abundant in man-made habitats such as cities (Foucaud et al., 2009). In the southern limit of its distribution in central eastern Argentina, the little fire ant is common and abundant in most cities (Calcaterra, unpublished data). In the introduced range, it may survive in human habitations or infrastructures including climate-controlled buildings and greenhouses. For example, W. auropunctata is a greenhouse pest in temperate regions, such as England and Canada. Although local spread is restricted in such cases, the population may act as a “stepping stone” for the colonisation of more suitable locations (via long distance spread) (McGlynn 1999; Holway et al. 2002; J. K. Wetterer pers. comm., 2003).

Wasmannia auropunctata has two types of ecologically different populations: 1) dominant populations with a high density of nests and workers, associated with highly disturbed environments (prone to anthropic or natural disturbance) and low ant species richness; 2) non-dominant populations (low density of nests and workers) associated with undisturbed environments (Orivel et al., 2009). The similarity of the native and introduced populations encouraged the study of the transition from non-dominant to dominant populations in their native range as a key factor in the study of biological invasions by this species (Foucaud et al., 2009).

The success of this species as an invasive is associated with its unicolonial social organization in which individuals from different nests mix freely, forming a large, highly competitive supercolony, which can reach hundreds of kilometers in invaded areas (Le Breton et al., 2004). This type of organization has also been observed in some areas of the native range (Le Breton et al., 2004), although forming much smaller colonies.

Finally, it was recently discovered that populations of this species have two types of reproductive systems: 1) clonal populations in which males and females reproduce independently by clonation, and workers reproduce sexually; and 2) classical sexual population (workers and females reproduce sexually and males by arrhenotokous parthenogenesis) (Fournier et al., 2005; Foucaud et al., 2007). Clonal populations are associated with human or man-made habitats, whereas sexual populations to natural habitats (Orivel et al., 2009). Clonality is believed to be responsible of the ability to colonize and persist in extreme environments or highly modified habitats, maintaining high levels of heterozygosis (Foucaud et al., 2009). Although there are different hypotheses, neither the origin nor the mechanism of clonality is well understood in this species.

Habitat List

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CategoryHabitatPresenceStatus
Littoral
Coastal areas Present, no further details
Terrestrial-managed
Disturbed areas Present, no further details
Managed forests, plantations and orchards Present, no further details
Terrestrial-natural/semi-natural
Riverbanks Present, no further details
Scrub / shrublands Present, no further details

Host Animals

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Animal nameContextLife stageSystem
Amblypelta cocophaga (coconut bug)
Homo sapiens

Host Plants and Other Plants Affected

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Plant nameFamilyContext
Coffea (coffee)RubiaceaeMain
Cucurbitaceae (cucurbits)CucurbitaceaeMain

Biology and Ecology

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Nutrition
Invasive ants typically have a generalised feeding regime and are able to gain nutrition from a variety of sources including grains, seeds, arthropods, decaying matter and vegetation (Holway et al. 2002; Ness and Bronstein 2004). Specialised feeders, such as army ants, which prey on other social insects, are less likely than the little fire ant (Wasmannia auropunctata) to be successful in introduced regions as the range of potential prey is smaller (McGlynn 1999).

Little fire ants are omnivores and are very flexible in their diet, preying on invertebrates and consuming plant parts (Romanski 2001). When honeydew-producing Homoptera are present, a large part of its diet is likely to consist of the carbohydrate-rich residues produced by these insects (J. K. Wetterer pers. comm., 2003). In human habitations, nutrition may be gained from fats (such as peanut butter) and other oily materials found in homes (Fernald 1947, in Brooks and Nickerson 2000). The little fire ant has a venomous sting that gives it a greater ability to subdue vertebrate and large invertebrate prey (Holway et al. 2002).

Means of Movement and Dispersal

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Introduction pathways to new locations
Agriculture: In Cameroon the spread of the little fire ant in cocoa plantations is encouraged due to the fact that it preys on, and thereby has a role in the control of, certain herbivorous cocoa pests (Bruneau de Mire 1969, in Brooks and Nickerson 2000).
Biological control: Used as a biological control agent on plantations in Gabon and Cameroon.
Floating vegetation/debris: Particularly logs.
Ignorant possession:W. auropunctata was likely to have been transported between the large islands in the Galapagos archipelago on plants and in soil, and between the small islands on camping provisions and equipment (Roque-Albelo and Causton 1999).
Live food trade:
Nursery trade: Invasive ant species that are known to associate closely with humans and nest in nursery stock or other products traded locally or globally have the potential to be spread long distances by humans (Holway et al. 2002). Little fire ants are commonly associated with and distributed by humans. Nurseries, fruit tree orchards, and ornamental plants are all potential habitat for the LFA. Since these ants have an affinity for nesting at tree bases and in potted plants, they are especially easily spread between plant nurseries. When contaminated plants are purchased and planted, the ants may become locally established (Romanski 2001).
Seafreight (container/bulk): Growing military and commercial activity may have facilitated the increased spread of ants into the Pacific region over the last century. Commerce to and from islands must be watched more closely than exchanges between two continental areas because ants are more abundant on islands and are more likely to establish on new islands (due to higher ecological vulnerability of island ecosystems) (McGlynn 1999).
Transportation of habitat material: May be spread by the movement of logs and lumber products infested with the ant. It may be spread within the Solomon Islands by the movement of coconuts.

Local dispersal methods
Natural dispersal (local):W. auropunctata is atypical of many ant species in that it does not rely on the winged queen to form a new colony. The colony radiates outwards from its center of origin and comes to occupy extensive areas (Roque-Albelo and Causton 1999).
People sharing resources (local): In Galapagos: food products, equipment.
Transportation of habitat material (local): May be spread by the movement of logs and lumber products infested with the ant. It may be spread within the Solomon Islands by the movement of coconuts.

    Pathway Causes

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    CauseNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
    Biological control Yes
    Crop production Yes
    Food Yes
    Nursery trade Yes Yes

    Pathway Vectors

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    VectorNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
    Floating vegetation and debris Yes
    Plants or parts of plants Yes Yes
    Soil, sand and gravel Yes Yes

    Impact Summary

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    CategoryImpact
    Native fauna Negative

    Impact

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    Environmental stresses (such as those caused by human practices, such as monoculture) may cause explosions of some ant populations, an effect that is particularly evident within ants’ native ranges. For example, in its native range in South America, the little fire ant Wasmannia auropunctata is a pest in disturbed forests and agricultural areas where it can reach high densities. High densities of W. auropunctata have been linked with sugar cane monocultures and cocoa farms in Colombia and Brazil, respectively. In Colombia, a high abundance of the little fire ant in forest fragments has been linked with low ant diversity. The little fire ant efficiently exploits resources including nectar, refuges within vegetation and honeydew residues (of Homopteran insects), and it may out-compete and displace native myrmecofauna (Armbrecht and Ulloa-Chacón 2003). Improved land management and a reduction of primary production will alleviate the problems associated with invasive ants and the environmental stresses that cause ant population explosions.
    In agricultural areas, due to the close association of the land and workers, the little fire ant may be a great nuisance to humans. This is because it is more likely to reach high densities and sting people working in the field. The increased numbers of Homoptera insects, which sap plant nutrients and make plants susceptible to disease, may cause substantial yield losses. In Cameroon, on the other hand, the spread of the little fire ant is encouraged, due to the fact that it preys on, and thereby has a role in the control of, certain herbivorous cocoa pests (Bruneau de Mire 1969, in Brooks and Nickerson 2000).
    W. auropunctata may have negative impacts on invertebrates and vertebrates. They may prey on native insects and cause declines in the numbers of small vertebrates. In human habitations it may sting, and even blind, domestic pets (cats and dogs) (Romanski 2001). It is believed to have caused a decrease in reptile populations in New Caledonia and in the Galapagos Archipelago, where it eats tortoise hatchlings and attacks the eyes and cloacae of the adult tortoises (Holway et al. 2002; J. K. Wetterer pers. comm., 2003). The little fire ant is probably the most aggressive species that has been introduced into the Galapagos archipelago, where a marked reduction of scorpions, spiders and native ant species in infested areas has been observed (Lubin 1984, Clark et al. 1982, in Roque-Albelo and Causton 1999). Similarly it has been noted to decrease local arthropod biodiversity in the Solomon Islands (Romanski 2001).
    W. auropunctata rarely buries myrmecochorous seeds and sometimes ingests elaisomes without dispersing seed. In its native range, the little fire ant decreases herbivorous arthropod biodiversity, increasing the fruit and seed production and growth of the plant and decreasing pathogen attacks. W. auropunctata may also, however, exclude arthropod plant mutualists, such as plant tenders or seed dispersers (Ness and Bronstein 2004).

    Please read Invasive ants impacts for a summary of the general impacts of invasive ants, such as their affect on mutualistic relations, the competitive pressure they impose on native ants and the effect they may have on vulnerable ecosystems.

    Threatened Species

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    Threatened SpeciesConservation StatusWhere ThreatenedMechanismReferencesNotes
    Hemiargus thomasi bethunebakeri (Miami blue butterfly)USA ESA listing as endangered species USA ESA listing as endangered speciesFloridaPredationUS Fish and Wildlife Service, 2012

    Risk and Impact Factors

    Top of page Invasiveness
    • Pioneering in disturbed areas
    Impact outcomes
    • Negatively impacts animal health
    • Reduced native biodiversity
    Impact mechanisms
    • Predation

    Uses List

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    Environmental

    • Biological control

    Detection and Inspection

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    The Pacific Invasive Ant Key (PIAKey) manual Pacific Invasive Ants Taxonomy Workshop Manual can both be used in identifying invasive ants in the Pacific region.

    Prevention and Control

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    Preventative measures: The Pacific Ant Prevention Programme is a proposal prepared for the Pacific Plant Protection Organisation and Regional Technical Meeting For Plant Protection. This plan aims to prevent the red imported fire ant and other invasive ant species with economic, environmental and/or social impacts, entering and establishing in or spreading between (or within) countries of the Pacific Region.

    A detailed pest risk assessment for the eight species ranked as having the highest potential risk to New Zealand was prepared as part of 'The invasive ant risk assessment project', Harris et al. 2005., for Biosecurity New Zealand by Landcare Research. The Invasive ant risk assessment for Wasmannia auropunctata can be viewed at Wasmannia auropunctata risk assessment. Please see Wasmannia auropunctata information sheet for more information on biology, distribution, pest status and control technologies.

    Integrated management: The potential of invasive ants to reach high densities is greater in ecosystems which have been utilised or modified by humans. For example the little fire ant is a greater problem in forests and habitats in its native range in South America that have been over-exploited by humans (Armbrecht and Ulloa-Chacón 2003). In south Colombia and Brazil, respectively, sugarcane monocultures and cocoa farms have been linked with high abundances of the little fire ant. Similarily, the Argentine ant (Linepithema humile) reaches locally high densities in agricultural systems, particularly citrus orchards, which host honey-dew producing Homoptera (Armbrecht and Ulloa-Chacón 2003; Holway et al. 2002). This implies that improved land management (including improving land use efficiency and reducing the practice of monoculture) and a reduction in primary production would reduce numbers of invasive ants, alleviate the problems associated with high densities of invasive ants and reduce the potential sources from new infestations.

    Chemical: Eradication programmes are expected to be more successful on small islands or in isolated areas where distributions are less than a few dozen hectares. In the Galapagos Archipelago, it may be impossible to eradicate W. auropunctata from the large islands where it is established. However it has been successfully eradicated from Santa Fe and has the potential to be eradicated from other small islands such as Marchena. The control of the little fire ant on these islands has been by non-selective ant poisons, fire, or by clearing vegetation (Roque-Albelo and Causton 1999, Roque-Albelo and Causton 1999).

    Management Information

    Compiled by the IUCN SSC Invasive Species Specialist Group (ISSG)


    1.0 Preventative Measures
    Prevention, quarantine and rapid response are the best management strategies for preventing the establishment of invasive ants. To be successful they require active surveying, early detection and subsequent rapid treatment procedures often along with quarantines. This type of management approach remains the most practical strategy for dealing with invasive ants (Krushelnycky Loope and Reimer 2005).
    1.1 Risk Assessments
    The first step to solving any problem is to identify whether it exists and define what it is. Preparing risk assessments is a vital management tool for addressing the issue of invasive ants in a country or region.
    In New Zealand an invasive ant risk assessment project (prepared for Biosecurity New Zealand by Landcare Research) identified ant species which pose the greatest potential threat to New Zealand. This project was divided into five sections: (i) gathering data on native and non-native New Zealand ants, (ii) producing a preliminary risk, (iii) producing information sheets on medium-risk and high-risk taxa, (iv) producing a detailed pest risk assessment for the eight highest-risk species, and (v) re-ranking these eight species. Of the 75 ant taxa which were ranked the following ants present the greatest potential risk to New Zealand: Anoplolepis gracilipes, Lasius neglectus, Monomorium destructor, Paratrechina longicornis, Solenopsis geminata, Solenopsis richteri, Tapinoma melanocephalum and Wasmannia auropunctata (Harris undated). An assessment of the current risk of W. auropunctata establishing itself in New Zealand (based on climate similarity of native and introduced ranges) lead to the prediction that it would be unlikely to establish outside but may achieve limited distribution in heated buildings (Harris unpubl. data, in Stanley 2004).
    1.2 Rapid Response Procedures
    As soon as the little fire ant (W. auropunctata) was detected on Hawaii Island the Hawaiian Department of Agriculture (HDOA) developed a pest advisory (Conant et al. 1999) and assigned an entomologist (Patrick Conant) to lead efforts to address this new invasion (Krushelnycky Loope and Reimer 2005). However, the HDOA did not initiate an eradication programme and the limited success to date with this species underscores the importance of early detection and a pre-existing infrastructure ready for a rapid response (Wetterer and Porter 2003, in Krushelnycky Loope and Reimer 2005).
    1.3 Quarantine and Monitoring
    Inter-island quarantines in the Hawaiian Archipelago may help prevent the spread of the little fire ant in Hawaii. Krushelnycky Loope and Reimer (2005) report on the situation as follows. Plants from nurseries have been identified as potential sources of ant infestation, however, in 2004 they were still being sold. The current quarantine of Hawaii Island involves baiting plants before shipping to the island and, if W. auropunctata is detected, treating plants before leaving they leave the island. However, at least one expert believes this is not rigorous enough and that all high-risk coming from high-risk areas should be treated regardless (E. VanGelder pers. comm., in Krushelnycky Loope and Reimer 2005). While eradication of the little fire ant on Hawaii Island is unlikely (without a very large cash injection) improved intra-island quarantines may confine the ant to Hawaii Island (Krushelnycky Loope and Reimer 2005). Surveying of high-risk areas on all Hawaiian Islands for the presence of W. auropunctata is also necessary, and has begun recently on Maui and Kauai (Krushelnycky Loope and Reimer 2005). High-risk areas include new plantings, especially palms. The little fire ant’s inconspicuous behaviour at low densities also makes intensive post-treatment monitoring necessary (Causton et al. in press, in Krushelnycky Loope and Reimer 2005).
    1.4 The Hawaii Ant Group
    The Hawaiian Ant Group is an informal, inter-agency collaboration established in 1999 to provide technical support to the HDOA, principally for the containment and possible eradication of the little fire ant (W. auropunctata) and the prevention of establishment of the red imported fire ant (S. invicta) (Krushelnycky Loope and Reimer 2005).
    1.5 Ant Prevention in the Pacific Region
    The Pacific island region includes over 25 countries, most of which are served by two important regional international organizations, the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC), which addresses agricultural issues, and the South Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), which addresses biodiversity issues. The biodiversity of the Pacific is particularly vulnerable to effects of invasive species (SPREP 2000).
    Special concern regarding ant invasions has arisen now that the red imported fire ant occurs at or near the coast on both sides of the Pacific, and the little fire ant has arrived in Hawaii and is spreading in the western Pacific. These and other species threaten all Pacific islands, including Hawaii and the U.S. affiliated islands of Guam, Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas, Federated States of Micronesia, American Samoa, and Palau.
    The SPC-Plant Protection Service (SPC-PPS) works in partnership with 22 Pacific members to maintain effective quarantine systems and to assist with regionally coordinated eradication/containment efforts. Priorities for emphasis are determined by member countries, which meet periodically as the Pacific Plant Protection Organization (PPPO).
    A workshop sponsored by the Invasive Species Specialist Group (ISSG) of IUCN was held in Auckland, New Zealand, in September 2003, and resulted in the compilation of a draft Pacific Ant Prevention Plan (Pacific Invasive Ant Group 2004). The Pacific Ant Prevention Plan was presented to and embraced by 21 Pacific island countries and territories present at a PPPO meeting, the “Regional Biosecurity, Plant Protection and Animal Health” meeting held by SPC in Suva, Fiji, in March 2004 (Pacific Plant Protection Organization 2004). Like Hawaii’s Red Imported Fire Ant Prevention Plan, the Pacific Ant Prevention Plan is still a conceptual work, but ISSG and others are working toward obtaining the international funding needed to implement the plan with the assistance of SPC. The project presents an exceptional opportunity for agriculture and conservation interests to work together with international and bilateral aid entities at regional and country levels to build much needed quarantine capacity. Increased quarantine protection is desperately needed by PICT in order to address invasions that jeopardize both agriculture and biodiversity.
    The information for this section was sourced directly from Krushelnycky Loope and Reimer (2005).
    2.0 Eradication
    Ant eradication is expected to be more successful on small islands or in isolated areas where ants cover less than a few dozen hectares. In large islands in the Galapagos Archipelago it is probably impossible to eradicate well-established populations of W. auropunctata. However it on the three-hectare island of Santa Fe (also part of the Galapagos Islands) W. auropunctata was successfully eradicated in the 1980s and 1990s (Krushelnycky Loope and Reimer 2005). The ant could potentially be eradicated from other such small islands in the Galapagos like the 21-hectare Marchena, where currents efforts to eradicate the ant are underway (see 5.1 Eradication Research).
    As of 2004 populations of W. auropunctata on Hawaii Island number 31 and cover over 76 hectares of land. While an immediate eradication response may have prevented the initial 3 populations covering 12 hectares from expanding it is now unlikely that any eradication attempt will be successful (in Krushelnycky Loope and Reimer 2005). This highlights the important of addressing ant invasions early on before they are firmly established.
    3.0 Chemical Control
    3.1 General Considerations
    Most if not all ant eradications have employed the use of baits and toxicants, many of which are developed for agriculture or urban settings. However, indiscriminate pesticide use in natural areas and fragile island ecosystems is not advocated. While some toxins such as hydramethylnon break down quickly in the environment, any and all pesticide use is likely to be accompanied by at least some undesirable non-target effects. These include increased runoff or drift outside the intended area, adverse affects on beneficial insects and non-target impacts on native species (Krushelnycky Loope and Reimer 2005).
    Non-target impacts must be weighed up carefully against the benefits of ant eradication. Cleary, treating whole ecosystems or islands is too risky as entire populations of rare invertebrates may be at risk of extinction. On the other hand, eradicating populations of exotic ants before they become established in a natural ecosystem or island has the potential to prevent the potentially disastrous consequences of ant invasions (Krushelnycky Loope and Reimer 2005).
    Baits should be designed with the specific foraging strategies of the target ant in mind. The preferred size, type and dispersal of bait and the nesting, foraging and behavioural traits of the ant should be considered in the planning stages of the operation. The use of appropriately designed and chosen baits and toxins will help reduce the impact of toxins on native ants and non-target fauna (McGlynn 1999).
    3.2 Bait Design
    For S. invicta, S. richteri, Monomorium destructor, W. auropunctata and Anoplolepis gracilipes, baiting strategies exist (not in temperate climates), and if the recommended baits are registered, in New Zealand control strategies could be implemented rapidly (Stanley 2004). W. auropunctata primarily nests and forages in the leaf litter and is behaviourally dominant when competing for small sized baits presented in a dispersed fashion (McGlynn 1999). W. auropunctata prefers carbohydrate-rich resources such as honey, water or honeydew to protein-rich resources (McGlynn 1999).
    Ant species attracted to lipid baits include Solenopsis invicta, P. megacephala and W. auropunctata (Stanley 2004). In laboratory tests, peanut butter, followed by honey, were more attractive to foragers than all other food types offered (food presented in order of attractiveness: peanut butter, honey, honey water, pineapple juice, tuna oil, dark karo syrup, mint jelly, light karo syrup, soy bean oil, orange juice, molasses, apple juice, coca cola syrup) (Williams and Whelan 1992, in Stanley 2004). Laboratory tests were also conducted on preferences for oil types, and soybean oil was the most attractive to W. auropunctata (oil presented in order of attractiveness: soybean, tuna, sunflower, peanut, safflower, codliver) (Williams and Whelan 1992, in Stanley 2004).
    Tuna oil and peanut butter were used in the Galapagos Archipelago on Santa Fe Island and proved highly attractive to ants, but also to birds, lizards and rats (Abedrabbo 1993, in Stanley 2004). Researchers used peanut butter painted monitoring sticks on Marchena Island (Galapagos Archipelago) to detect for ant presence (Causton Sevilla and Porter 2005). Peanut butter bait is also used in quarantines in Hawaii to treat plants before shipping (Krushelnycky Loope and Reimer 2005). Hot dogs on wire flags were used during the eradication programme on Marchena Island in 2001 and were attractive to W. auropunctata; but a large proportion were eaten by lizards and crabs (Causton et al. in prep., in Stanley 2004).
    3.3 Ant Toxins
    Ant toxins can be classed into three categories: “stomach” poisons (or metabolic inhibitors), Insect Growth Regulators (IGRs) and neurotoxins. Stomach toxins include hydramethylnon (eg: Maxforce® or Amdro®), sulfuramid and sodium tetraborate decahydrate (eg: Borax). IGRs include compounds such as methoprene, fenoxycarb or pyriproxyfen. Neurotoxins include fipronil (eg: Xstinguish®). Stomach poison kills all workers and reproductives it comes into contact with. IGRs work by disrupting development of the queens ovarian tissues, effectively sterilising the colony. Neurological inhibitors disrupt insect central nervous systems by blocking neuron receptors. The onset of mortality is contingent upon the type of active ingredient. In general, ant baits that contain active ingredients that are metabolic inhibitors have a two to three day delay before extensive mortality occurs in the colony (Oi Vail and Williams 2000). Baits containing IGRs take several weeks before colony populations are reduced substantially (Oi Vail and Williams 2000). The latter (IGRs) provide gradual long-term control, while metabolic inhibitors provide short-term, localised and rapid control (Oi Vail and Williams 2000). This is because while stomach poisons are faster than IGRs, they sometimes eliminate workers before the toxin can be effectively distributed throughout the colony (O’Dowd Green and Lake 1999).
    Hawaiian Department of Agriculture employees have primarily used Amdro® granular ant bait to target W. auropunctata. It is effective when it can be evenly broadcast throughout a population and when excessive humidity or rainfall does not disrupt application operations. Thick vegetation may make it difficult to achieve thorough coverage, which is necessitated by the little fire ant’s short foraging distance. In addition, frequent rainfall in some regions has hampered the effectiveness of Amdro® applications. Even more problematic are infestations in fruit orchards, where no satisfactory eradication technique is available (Krushelnycky Loope and Reimer 2005).
    Amdro® (hydramethylnon in soybean oil on corn grit matrix) is very effective at controlling S. invicta and W. auropunctata and suggested for use against the latter by Stanley (2004). Methoprene baits (0.4%) used in a field experiment on Santa Cruz Island (Galapagos Islands) in 1989–90 were highly attractive, but population reductions had only reached 50–75% after 3 months (Ulloa-Chacon and Cherix 1993).
    The Australian-manufactured IGR baits developed for S. invicta control, Engage® (methoprene) and Distance® (pyriproxyfen), appear to be the most effective IGR ant baits available. They have a lipid attractant and are also likely to be attractive to Pheidole megacephala, M. destructor, Solenopsis richteri, S. geminata, W. auropunctata and M. pharaonis. Fenoxycarb (Logic®) (1% fenoxycarb) has proved to be repellent to W. auropunctata in laboratory and field tests (Williams and Whelan 1992, in Stanley 2004).
    Extinguish Plus® (hydramethylnon and methoprene in soybean oil on corn grit) is a new commercial bait. This combination of rapid mortality toxins (eg: hydramethylnon, fipronil, indoxacarb) and IGRs in commercial baits is likely to become more common in the future. Extinguish Plus® is the only product currently available and is likely to be effective only against species attracted to lipids (eg: S. invicta, P. megacephala, W. auropunctata) (Stanley 2004).
    4.0 Integrated Management
    The control of the little fire ant in the Galapagos Islands has been by a combination of non-selective ant poisons, fire, and/or by clearing vegetation (Roque-Albelo and Causton 1999).
    The potential of certain invasive ant species to reach high densities is particularly great in anthropomorphic (or human-modified) ecosystems. This is particularly evident on land that is intensively used for primary production. W. auropunctata is a great problem in areas in its native South America that have been over-exploited by humans, including in south Colombian sugarcane monocultures and Brazilian cocoa farms (Armbrecht and Ulloa-Chacón 2003). Improved land management, including a reduction in monoculture and an increase in the efficiency of primary production, may help prevent population explosions of invasive ants and reduce the size of source populations from which ants could spread from.
    5.0 Research
    5.1 Eradication Research
    The development of effective techniques to eradicate populations of invasive ants is crucial to the conservation of native biodiversity. A trial eradication of W. auropunctata from 21 hectares of infested land on Marchena Island (Galápagos Archipelago) was conducted by researchers (Causton, Sevilla and Porter 2005). Two broadcast applications of Amdro® and follow-up applications on two small infestations resulted in no W. auropunctata individuals detected since October 2002 (Wetterer and Porter 2003, Causton et al. in prep., C. Causton, pers. comm., in Stanley 2004). Results from trials and control programmes on the Galapagos Islands indicate W. auropunctata can be effectively controlled and even eradicated using Amdro®, provided adequate eradication and monitoring techniques are used and funding is available to complete the task (Abedrabbo 1993, Causton et al. in prep., in Stanley 2004).
    5.2 Bait and Toxin Research
    Stanley (2004) suggests that future research on W. auropunctata focus on:
    • Trialling the attractiveness and efficacy of the IGR commercial baits Distance® (pyriproxyfen) and Engage® (methoprene) on as many high risk species as possible (eg: S. geminata, M. destructor, W. auropunctata)
    • Baiting trials with Advion® should be conducted (have a reduced environmental risk associated with them)
    • Testing  IGRs such as Distance® and Engage® in the long term (for preventing colony recovery by targeting development and reproduction)
    5.3 Biosecurity New Zealand
    Biosecurity New Zealand, the branch of government responsible for managing invasive species, has responded to a series of incursions of exotic invasive ant species by relying heavily on a small number of baits and toxins. The absence of a wide variety of effective baits may compromise the success of incursion responses. As a first step to ensuring effective incursion response, Biosecurity New Zealand commissioned Landcare Research to research and review international literature about the baits and toxins used for ant control (see Stanley 2004). The next step will be testing the most promising of these against a selected group of high-risk invasive ant species.
    6.0 Obstacles to Effective Management
    By all accounts W. auropunctata is a very difficult species to eradicate or control (Krushelnycky Loope and Reimer 2005). Hawaiian Department of Agriculture efforts to combat the little fire ant have involved detection, experimental efforts at eradication of local populations, and inter-island quarantine. The following obstacles have hindered them (reported by Krushelnycky Loope and Reimer 2005): lack of staff; lack of public and commercial awareness; lack of access to nursery sales records; lack of registered ant control product for use in orchard fruit and vegetable crops; difficulty detecting the ant, the failure of most people to take the threat of its invasion seriously and the likelihood that the ant had been present for as long as a decade before being discovered.
    Failure of a W. auropunctata eradication programme on Marchena Island in the Galapagos Islands was thought to be due to a cessation of funding before control was completed, and the prevalence of El Nino conditions that suited W. auropunctata populations (Causton et al. in prep., in Stanley 2004).

    References
    Armbrecht, I. and Ulloa-Chacón, P. 2003. The Little Fire ant Wasmannia auropunctata (Roger) (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) as a Diversity Indicator of Ants in Tropical Dry Forest Fragments of Colombia, Environ. Entomol. 32 (3): 542-547. [Accessed 31 March 2007, from: http://mafalda.univalle.edu.co/~hormigas/files/Wasmannia_as_indicator.pdf]
    Causton , C., Sevilla, C. and Porter, S. 2005. Eradication of the Little Fire Ant, Wasmannia Auropunctata (Hymenoptera: Formicidae), from Marchena Island, Galapagos: on the Edge of Success?, Florida Entomologist. [Accessed 5 April 2007, from: http://www.ars.usda.gov/Research/Research.htm]
    Harris, R. Undated. Invasive Ant Pest Risk Assessment Project. [Accessed 29 March 2007, from: http://issg.appfa.auckland.ac.nz/database/species/reference_files/Ant_RA/overview.pdf]
    Holway, D.A., Lach, L., Suarez, A.V., Tsutsui, N.D. and Case, T.J. 2002. The Causes and Consequences of Ant Invasions, Annu. Rev. Ecol. Syst. 33: 181-233.
    Krushelnycky, P.D., Loope, L.L. and Reimer, N.J. 2005. The Ecology, Policy, and Management of Ants in Hawaii, Proc. Hawaiian Entomol. Soc. 37. Accessed 2 April 2007, from http://www.ctahr.hawaii.edu/peps/museum/ant_website/Krushelnycky_et_al_Ant_review2005.pdf]
    O’Dowd, D.J., Green, P.T. and Lake, P.S. 1999. Status, Impact, and Recommendations for Research and Management of Exotic Invasive Ants in Christmas Island National Park. Centre for the Analysis and Management of Biological Invasions: Clayton (Victoria, Australia). [Accessed 4 April 2007, from: http://www.issg.org/database/species/reference_files/Christmas_Island_Report.pdf]
    Oi, D.H., Vail, K.M. and Williams, D.F. 2000. Bait distribution among multiple colonies of Pharaoh ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae), Journal of Economic Entomology 93 (4): 1247 - 1255. [Accessed 13 Friday 2007, from: http://www.bioone.org.ezproxy.auckland.ac.nz/archive/0022-0493/93/4/pdf/i0022-0493-93-4-1247.pdf]
    Roque-Albelo, L. and Causton, C. 1999. El Niño and Introduced Insects in the Galápagos Islands: Different Dispersal Strategies, Similar Effects, Noticias de Galápagos (60). [Accessed 24 February 2005, from: http://www.darwinfoundation.org/articles/n6000129903.html]
    Stanley, M.C. 2004. Review of the Efficacy of Baits Used for Ant Control and Eradication (Landcare Research Contract Report: LC0405/044). [Accessed 29 March 2007, from: http://www.landcareresearch.co.nz/research/biocons/invertebrates/ants/BaitEfficacyReport.pdf]

     

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      Compiled by: Dr. James K. Wetterer, Honors College, Florida Atlantic University, Jupiter, USA & IUCN/SSC Invasive Species Specialist Group (ISSG)

      Last Modified: Saturday, October 31, 2009

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