Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
  Energy News  

Subscribe free to our newsletters via your

Southern U.S. said source of ant spread

disclaimer: image is for illustration purposes only
by Staff Writers
Gainesville, Fla. (UPI) Feb 24, 2011
Global invasions of fire ants can be traced back to the southern United States where the nuisance insect first gained a hold in the 1930s, researchers say.

Scientists at the University of Florida say the ant, native to South America, had been contained there and in the southeastern United States before turning up in faraway places in the last 20 years, including California, China, Taiwan, Australia and New Zealand, a university release reported Thursday.

Their findings could prove helpful in finding new ways to control the invasive species, Solenopsis invicta. The United States spends more than $6 billion a year to control the ants and offset damage they cause, including medical expenses and $750 million in agricultural losses.

"Fire ants are very annoying pests, and they cause people to suffer," researcher Marina Ascunce said. "People who are allergic can die (from ant stings)."

The research team used genetic markers to trace the origins of ants in nine locations where recent invasions occurred and traced all but one of the invasions to the southern United States.

The scientists were surprised by the findings, Ascunce said.

"I thought that at least one of the populations in the newly invaded areas would have come from South America, but all of the genetic data suggest the most likely source in virtually every case was the southern United States," she said.

The study results show the problematic side of a robust global trade and travel network, the researchers say.

Share This Article With Planet Earth DiggDigg RedditReddit
YahooMyWebYahooMyWeb GoogleGoogle FacebookFacebook

Related Links
Farming Today - Suppliers and Technology

Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

Multiple Approaches Necessary To Tackle World's Food Problems
University Park PA (SPX) Feb 23, 2011
Researchers need to use all available resources in an integrated approach to put agriculture on a path to solve the world's food problems while reducing pollution, according to a Penn State biologist. Changes in national and international regulations will be necessary to achieve this goal. "Using resources more efficiently is what it will take to put agriculture on a path to feed the expec ... read more

Earth's Core Rotating Faster Than Rest Of The Planet

2012 Science Budget Endorsed By Earth And Space Scientists

GIS Development Announces Latin American Geospatial Forum

Europe to forge ahead on climate satellite

EU issues urgent call to 21 states on satellite network

Lockheed Martin-Built GPS Satellite Exceeds 10 Years On-Orbit

Russia To Launch Glonass Satellite Feb 24

SkyTraq Introduces Low-Power High-Performance GLONASS/GPS Receiver

Bacteria Living On Old-Growth Trees May Help Forests Grow

Tree-planting world record set in Philippines

Biodiversity In Danger: Which Areas Should Be Protected?

Experts Question Aspects Of Prescribed Burning

Amyris Technology Performs At Industrial Scale

Posco And LanzaTech To Collaborate On Renewable Energy

Abengoa Consolidates Position As Technological Leader

Joule Unlimited On Track To Beat All Known Biofuel Processes

Solar Frontier Starts Production At World's Largest CIS Solar Module Plant

ZenithSolar Signs Landmark Agreement With Chinese Government

DuPont Encapsulant Materials Enable Production, Performance And Cost Advantages

Clear Skies Solar Responds To Rapidly Expanding Market

Eon to build fifth U.K. offshore wind farm

GL Garrad Hassan Launches Onshore Wind Resource Mapping For UK

Construction Begins On Dempsey Ridge Wind Project

India's Suzlon wins $1.28 bn wind power deal

China says over 2,400 dead in coal mines in 2010

China mine blast death toll up to 26: state media

Seven found dead in China mine flood: state media

China mine flood traps at least seven: state media

China scraps death penalty for some crimes

China activists charged over 'Jasmine rally' call

China proposes death penalty for organ traffickers

Shanghai passes one-dog law

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2010 - SpaceDaily. AFP and UPI Wire Stories are copyright Agence France-Presse and United Press International. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by SpaceDaily on any Web page published or hosted by SpaceDaily. Privacy Statement