Fire ants reappearing in Orange County

Apr 24, 2006

Fire ants are reappearing in California's Orange County the result, say some critics, of the state ending its fire ant eradication funding in 2003.

"There's no question that the end of the (state) eradication program led to the stopping of treatments," Les Greenberg, a University of California-Riverside entomology specialist told the Orange County Register. "In a couple of years the ants had time to spread again -- mostly by their own means, by flight, as well as being transported by people."

State officials disagree, noting California still spends $1 million a year on a fire-ant program, mainly to help quarantined nurseries prevent the spread of the ants.

The biting, stinging ants -- native to South America -- were discovered in 1998, after they had already colonized most of southern Orange County, the newspaper reported. Although they don't carry diseases that can infect humans, they tend to build large, unsightly mounds and attack in large masses, each ant delivering multiple stings.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: No silver bullet: Study identifies risk factors of youth charged with murder

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Data indicate there is no immigration crisis

13 hours ago

Is there an "immigration crisis" on the U.S.-Mexico border? Not according to an examination of historical immigration data, according to a new paper from Rice University's Baker Institute for Public Policy.

The unexpected benefits of adjustable rate mortgages

14 hours ago

Using loan level data matched to consumer credit records, researchers have been able to determine that a reduction in mortgage payments of as little as $150 a month spurred a reduction in mortgage defaults and an increase ...

User comments : 0