Fire Ant

Solenopsis spp.
Fire Ant

Appearance: Fire ants are a genus of ants, namely the genus Solenopsis. Worker ants are up to 3mm long and queen ants up to 6mm long. This type of ant is slightly reddish brown. These insects usually live in colonies that can reach up to 100,000 ants

Behavior: The typical fire ant colony produces large mounds in open areas, and feeds mostly on young plants, seeds and occasionally crickets. Fire ants often attack small animals and kill them. Unlike most other ants, who bite and then spray acid on the wound, the fire ant only bites to get a grip and then stings (from the stomach) and injects poisonous alkaloids (piperidine).

Sign of Infestation: By findings of ant colonies and nests, and ant foraging behavior.

Diseases/Contamination: For humans, it is a painful sting, which leaves a sensation similar to what a person feels when they are burned by fire (hence their name) and the side effects of the sting can be deadly for sensitive individuals.

Prevention: By reducing food sources that are potentially preferred by ants like food that contain sugar and carbohydrates, by closing any potential access, and by reducing humidity.

Reproduction: After mating, the ant queen will find a nest and start laying her eggs. The queen will provide care of the eggs, larvae, and pupae until the first worker ants appear. The workers start taking care of the colony and collected food. While the workers play a role in expanding the colony, the queen kept on laying eggs. The colonies are mature when wings are formed in males and females’ mate.