Pest Status Obtained
Another new (exotic) ant is with us! Well he’s not really that new. The Asian needle ant was first discovered in Georgia in 1932 but the ant’s distinction was patchy for a long time. It only attained pest status about 6 years ago when it was found in South Carolina. Since then it has also been found in Alabama and Tennessee in relatively large numbers.
What Makes the Asian Needle Ant Important?
The ant is important for two reasons. The Asian needle ant sting is similar to a fire ant and it replaces native ant species where it becomes established. The Asian needle ant sting results in mild to intense pain with temporary to prolonged itching, sometimes for several hours. Anaphylaxis shock (extreme allergic reaction) has been documented in some cases.
The Asian needle ant nests are usually small but numerous and found under leaf mulch and nearly all man made objects in yards making control difficult. Research by the National Pest Management Association is currently underway to determine new control strategies including baits to assist in the control of this serious pest ant.
If you have any questions or would like further information on Asian needle ants contact Doc Pickhardt at: firstname.lastname@example.org