Baits are a very effective, but expensive, method of controlling existing fire ant colonies. USDA-ARS has worked to make oil-based baits commercially available to the public. Baits do not harm wildlife because they break down in sunlight.
How they work:
Types of Baits:
- Insecticide is dissolved in oil and absorbed on granules.
- Granules are easily broadcasted over small and large areas.
- Fire ants aggressively forage and return bait to the colony.
- Fire ants feed on bait by sucking oil from granules.
- Fire ants feed the insecticide to others by trophallaxis (an exchange of alimentary liquids).
- Abamectin (an example is Ascend®)
- Fenoxycarb (examples include Award®, Hi-Yield Fire Ant Bait®)
- Hydramethylnon (examples include Amdro®, Combat Fire Ant Killer Granules®)
- Fast acting as it kills ants in three to five weeks.
- Methoprene (an example is Extinguish®)
- Sterilizes reproductives.
- Prevents larvae from developing normally.
- Effects are slow, but control lasts for months.
- Pyriproxyfen (examples include Distance®, Spectracide Fire Ant Bait®)
- Spinosad (examples include Justice®, Ortho Fire Ant Killer Granules®)