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Byron Shire
November 28, 2021

Yellow Crazy Ants detected in Lismore again

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Yellow Crazy Ant (Anoplolepis gracilipes) has been confirmed in Lismore. Photo supplied.

Yellow Crazy Ants (Anoplolepis gracilipes) have been threatening the Lismore area since 2018 when they were detected in the Lismore CBD. Another colony has been detected in Lismore recently.

‘A small surviving colony of yellow crazy ants was recently detected in Lismore after an astute resident spotted them in his garden,’ said a spokesperson for Lismore City Council (LCC).

‘They are not native to Australia and are a serious environmental pest. They don’t bite or sting people but can spray tiny drops of formic acid when disturbed, which can irritate the skin.’

Yellow Crazy Ants,(noplolepis gracilipes). Photo By Forest & Kim Starr (USGS) / Wikipedia

Top 100

The Yellow Crazy Ant is considered to be one of the top 100 invasive species worldwide and, in large numbers, can attack and kill small animals and birds, damaging local ecosystems. While they are  not a direct threat to humans they pose a serious economic and environmental threat.

Yellow Crazy Ants are highly invasive. They can build supercolonies and devastate local flora and fauna, as well as affecting both agricultural production and the horticultural industry.

NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) is monitoring and controlling the surviving ants through targeted treatments approved for use in urban and residential areas. ‘Lismore City Council and the DPI are grateful for the continued support of the Lismore community in the management of yellow crazy ants,’ said LCC spokesperson.

You can help stop their spread by checking outdoor areas for ants with:

  • slender yellow to brownish bodies about 5mm long
  • dark brown abdomens, sometimes striped
  • very long legs and antennae
  • an erratic walking style

If you spot any suspicious ants:

  • collect them in a container
  • freeze them for 15 minutes, then photograph them against a white background
  • call the Biosecurity Helpline on 1800 680 244 or email [email protected]

Good quality photos and videos of the ants will help with initial identification. For more information about yellow crazy ants visit www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/yca

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