The Queensland Government has launched another assault against what appears to be a growing problem with fire ants.
The latest front is south of Brisbane as the pests head for the Gold Coast.
Sarah Lingard reports.
Tiny insects causing a massive problem and it’s not new, fire ants have been a scourge in southeast Queensland for years.
Anthony Heth, Property Owner: “I didn’t expect it at this stage, I knew they were getting close but I didn’t think they were getting here, obviously they were already here.”
Anthony Heth found the first fire ant nest on his land six weeks ago after being alerted by a state government warning that fire ants had been detected in the area.
Today, it’s become the latest battleground in the eradication program.
Bill Byrne, Agriculture Minister: “We are still hopeful that we will be able to get to a successful outcome over time and that’s why we’re continuing to apply these resources.”
Trying to get a handle on the current situation has been no easy feat but the hard work is set to pay off.
The pests have been on the march now for 12 years but the new treatment program is well under way.
The nests are being eradicated one by one, in the hope of stopping the ants dead in their tracks as they head for the coast.
Australia has taken a different approach to other countries struggling with the invasion, and are using the aid of dogs to seek out the nests.
Sarah Corcoran, Biosecurity Qld: “We are one of the only countries in the world or the only country in the world who use dogs for detecting fire ants.”
Proving once again to be man’s best friend.
Sarah Lingard, QUT News.