State unveils plan to eradicate fire ants in WaimanaloUPDATED 9:14 PM HST May 02, 2014Video Transcript
little fire ants in Waimanalo. State Agriculture officials today unveiled their plan to wipe out potentially devastating pests. It's our top story tonight at 6-30. These are little fire ants-- collected recently in Waimanalo by agriclture officials and Cas Vanderwoude--a state ant specialist with the Hawaii Ant Lab. In the next few weeks Vanderwoude and his team will begin the first of 8 treatments in this dense and dangerously overgrown state owned lot in Waimanalo. Three and half acres are infested-- that includes a gulch... But crews will treat the buffer area as well. ROB 2:31-2:46 WE'RE FAILRY CONFIDENT WE CAN ERADICATE it's a SMALL ENOUGH INFESTATION THAT USING THE METHOD DEVELOPED BY HAWAII ANT LAB THAT HAS ACTUALLY BEEN PROVEN TO ERADICATE INFESTATIONS OF THE SAME SIZE WE'RE CERTAIN WE CAN ERADICATE IT. The Hawaii ant lab crew---along with several state Agriculture workers--- will use a combination of three pesticides: two granular and one gel like --- that will be sprayed in the trees. 6:43 -6:57 rob THEY ARE PRIMARILY FOUND IN TREES. THEY PREFER TO LIVE IN TREES UM YOU TYPICALLY WILL ENOUCTER TEM BECAUSE THE FALL ON YOU FROM THE TREES ABOVE AND THEN THAT'S WHEN YOU GET STUNG AND WHEN THEY FALL ON YOU AND END UP INSIDE OF YOUR CLOTHES. 8 treatments over one year. Then three years of monitoring... Before they will say the problem is eradicated. They have been successful on Maui and Kaua'i. And there is a sense of urgency to stop it on Oahu before its too late. neil 12:25-13:49 WE'VE GOT A NUMBER OF ANTS HERE AND ITS PROBABLY ONE OF THE RESPONSES PEOPLE SAY "ITS JUST AN ANT, WE'VE GOT ANTS. WELL, THIS ONES IDFFERENT. IT NEEDS TO BE TREATED DIFFERENTLY. WE REALLY WAIT TO SEE PEOPLE CALL US IN SO WE CAN RESPOND AND SEE HOPING ITS NOT THE RIGHT ANT ITS ONE OF THEE OTHERS THAT AREN'T SO BAD THAT IF IF IS WE WANT TO CATCH IT EARLY IF WE CATCH IT TOO LATE THE ITS TOO LATE TO BE ABLE TO DO ANYTHING ABOUT IT. Residents are also being asked to continue to monitor their area for little fire ants. You just need to put a chopstick out with a little creamy peanut butter-- or spam--- and if it attracts ants... then put it in a zip lock bag and freeze it. There's a drop off box at the Agriculture office on King street. While we were there someone dropped off two samples from Waimanalo. Curtiss was able to tell right off the bat-- they weren't fire ants. But he will follow up with the person who dropped them off so they can document the areas.