Ants of all kinds were among the 1000 samples officials collected in Waimanalo last week.
The survey covering 50 acres helped inspectors determine the outbreak of little fire ants covers 4 acres of state land.
Three parcels are leased to farmers, and one is fallow.
Experts with the Hawaii Ant Lab in Hilo will arrive in Honolulu this week to determine the course of action to get rid of the colonies.
"Beginning in a couple of weeks we will start treating the area for eradication. The eradication effort will take upwards of a year and it could take three years of monitoring afterwards to make sure there are no ants," said Rob Curtiss, acting manager of the state agriculture's Pest Control program.
Officials will begin cutting back trees and vegetation to make a buffer zone in an effort to contain the infestation.
The treatment plan will likely include applying pesticide and setting out bait so the ants take it back to the colony to kill the queen.
Officials say the nurseries around the area are currently pest free.
The public is being asked to be vigilant to keep the pest from spreading
“On the Big Island there are farms they have abandoned because they can’t get workers to pick fruit. They invaded people’s homes and are probably responsible for blinding pets," said Curtiss.
Officials say the infestation in Waimanalo is around a gully area and near part of a stream.
But the ants prefer to nest in trees.
"It could affect tourism if it ends up in a beach park and it’s going to be raining down from trees on tourists and stinging them. So it’s very important that we locate these infestations and try to eradicate them,"
The department is asking the legislature for more funding to help in the fight against invasive species.
That is a money issue that lawmakers will take up in the next few weeks as they put the state budget to bed.
The little fire ants have gained a foothold on the Big Island and officials have found colonies on Maui and Oahu which were believed to have been brought in on fern logs from the Big Island.