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Latest Fire ant Stories

2008-08-05 03:00:24

By John Hopkins, The Virginian-Pilot, Norfolk, Va. Aug. 5--Leo Lestino took a closer look at the ground Monday as he sat at a picnic table at City View Park in Virginia Beach. There are posted signs warning about fire ants, but Lestino hadn't noticed them until Monday. Then the 25-year-old Regent University student thought about the teeming playgrounds nearby. "There are a lot of kids out here playing around," he said. "Everybody brings their kids here. I think they're oblivious to the...

2008-07-27 00:00:24

By The Associated Press EDINBURG, Texas (AP) - South Texans eager to salvage what they can from waterlogged homes struck by Hurricane Dolly have another problem: The floodwaters they're slogging through are laced with stinging fire ants, snakes and tarantulas."You don't want to wade in this water," state Health Services Commissioner David Lakey said during a visit to the Rio Grande Valley on Friday. "You don't want to play in this water. You want to stay out of this water."It was timely...

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2008-05-15 08:40:00

You won't be able to hear them. Don't even try. But somewhere out there, maybe as near as your backyard, the crazy Rasberry ants are marching. Hundreds, thousands, millions, billions of them are coming in a near-unstoppable zig-zagging insect army intent on making your home, yard and life a living hill. First spotted in 2002 in Pasadena by Tom Rasberry, the exterminator for whom the rice-grain-sized insects are named, the ants now have spread through much of the greater Houston area....

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2008-04-08 08:45:00

New study shows the age of victims determines how fire ants respond to aggressorsPretending to be dead is an effective self-defense strategy adopted by young fire ant workers under attack from neighboring colonies. This tactic makes them four times more likely to survive aggression than older workers who fight back. As a result, these young workers are able to contribute to brood care and colony growth to ensure the survival and fitness of their queen. These findings by Dr. Deby Cassill from...

2008-01-25 06:48:37

Infectious stomach flus may be gut-wrenching for us, but consider the plight of some tropical black ants: When infected by tiny nematode worms, the ants' rumps resemble a bright-red, bird-attracting berry. The parasites' strange transformative ability might help it spread to other ant colonies, scientists report in two new studies. Birds normally avoid eating the foul-tasting ants, but the berry-like temptation may be too much, said researcher Steve Yanoviak, an insect...

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2007-05-07 14:50:00

LUBBOCK, Texas -- Imported red fire ants have plagued farmers, ranchers and others for decades. Now the reviled pests are facing a bug of their own. Researchers have pinpointed a naturally occurring virus that kills the ants, which arrived in the U.S. in the 1930s and now cause $6 billion in damage annually nationwide, including about $1.2 billion in Texas. The virus caught the attention of U.S. Department of Agriculture researchers in Florida in 2002. The agency is now seeking commercial...

2006-07-18 19:00:41

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) - Fire ants are showing up in greater numbers in coastal Virginia, much to the alarm of gardeners and farmers who dare disturb their nests. "The way they bite, you would think they were the size of an alligator ... " said Carl Lohafer, a Virginia Beach resident who discovered colonies in his yard two years ago. "It was like a hot poker jabbing you." In Virginia and elsewhere, the ants appear to thrive in the favorable climate of the coastal region. Infestations of the ants...

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2006-06-12 09:15:04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- The first sentence of the first chapter of Walter Tschinkel's new book says it all: "I love fire ants." The Florida State University myrmecologist - a biologist who specializes in ants - has spent 35 years studying red imported fire ants, aggressive stinging insects that most Southerners consider a pest of the first order if not an outright scourge. Tschinkel takes exception to that notion in "The Fire Ants." The 723-page epic, published by Harvard University Press,...

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2005-02-15 07:22:28

HILO, Hawaii (AP) -- It doesn't make as much noise as the coqui frog, but the little fire ant has invaded the Big Island, stinging fruit pickers and homeowners alike. The little fire ant, a native of South America, has been spreading since it was first discovered in Hawaiian Paradise Park in 1999, state agriculture officials said. The tiny light-brown ant is no bigger in length than the edge of a penny, but it can pack a painful punch - fire ant stings cause immediate dime-sized red welts...


Latest Fire ant Reference Libraries

Inchman, Myrmecia forficate
2013-07-10 12:28:46

The inchman (Myrmecia forficate) is a species of bull ant that can be found in Australia, in a range that includes Tasmania and possibly southeastern areas of Australia. This species is gregarious, living in colonies like most other ant species, but it forages for food alone. Nests often go unseen and are typically found under rocks.  It reaches an average body length of up to one inch long, the trait from which it received its common name. The inchman is both a scavenger and a...

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2005-08-25 08:18:19

Fire ants are stinging ants of the genus Solenopsis, of which there are 266 species. They include Solenopsis invicta, commonly known as Red imported fire ant (RIFA). Each colony produces large mounds in open areas, and feeds on young plants and seeds. Solenopsis often attacks young animals and can kill them. For humans it has a painful sting - hence the name fire ant - and the aftereffects of the sting are deadly to some individuals. The worker ants are blackish to reddish and vary from...

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Word of the Day
cacodemon
  • An evil spirit; a devil.
  • A nightmare.
  • In astrology, the twelfth house of a scheme or figure of the heavens: so called from its signifying dreadful things, such as secret enemies, great losses, imprisonment, etc.
'Cacodemon' comes from a Greek term meaning 'evil genius.'
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