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27 January 2014

13 year battle to stop fire ants "lost"

 Cordoned off fire ant nests at Leslie Park Goodna.

















The 13 year battle to stop fire ants in Australia has been declared lost after a fresh outbreak of the American pest was discovered in the Ipswich suburb of Goodna.

Biosecurity Queensland confirmed the latest invasion at Leslie Park just 100 metres off the Ipswich Motorway after a tip-off from local residents.

They treated the nests on Friday and barricaded the area adjacent to a children's playground and barbecue facilities.

Fire ants were first detected in Australia in 2001 at the Port of Brisbane and Wacol and have since spread across southeast Queensland.

Cr Paul Tully fights fire ants.
Goodna councillor Paul Tully said millions of dollars had been spent to eliminate the pest.

"This is the second infestation in Goodna in nine months and the outlook is bleak.

"I suspect we have lost the battle.

"Our national history shows that imported pests such as rabbits, foxes and cane toads can never be eliminated."

Cr Tully said the war on fire ants should continue with efforts to slow its spread into farmland beyond the southeast.

"They will eventually cross the border into New South Wales.

"All hell will then break loose as fire ants commence their spread across Australia."

Cr Tully called on the federal government to fund a major increase in the fire ant eradication program.


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