Little fire ants, first found on Oʻahu about six months ago, are continuing to spread throughout the island. The ants are already well established on the Big Island and have been found but were controlled on Kauaʻi and Maui.
Faculty and staff at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa’s College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources and the Hawaiʻi Department of Agriculture have tips for identifying and controlling these invasive and damaging pests.
See the College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources news release for the steps for basic detection and control. Discover where the little fire ants live, a method for detection and how to get rid of them. The college also offers a free publication Little Fire Ant Products Available for Homeowner Use for download.
More about the little fire ants
Little fire ant, Wasmannia auropunctata, is a serious pest because this tiny ant can easily spread undetected into yards and homes, parks, landscapes, vacant properties and forests.
Little fire ants deliver a very painful sting (similar to an electric shock) to people, pets, livestock and even marine wildlife such as sea turtles and ground-nesting birds. The little fire ants are attracted to eye fluids and typically sting near animals’ eyes, which can lead to blindness due to clouding of the cornea, or keratopathy.