Where are they?Found in densities ranging from 20-800 mounds per acre, imported fire ants are expected eventually to colonize at least 25% of the continental United States, their spread tempered by cold weather sensitivity.
How do they spread?Scientists have identified four major ways:
1) Transport in nursery root stock or in soil used in construction.
2) Reproductive forms with wings fly or are blown to new areas after mating.
3) Fertile winged queens may land in trucks or open containers and be transported to new breeding areas. Colonies may contain a single queen or up to 3,000 and all queens must be destroyed to eradicate a colony.
4) Colonies may form rafts during heavy rains and float to new locations. If necessary, the ants can survive long periods of submersion in water, reviving completely when dried out.