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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Related Topics

Leafy Spurge Weed
USDA Agricultural Research Services Web site on area wide suppression of fire ants.

Leafy Spurge Weed

  • Decreased use of herbicides
  • eliminate infestations


  • use of weed predators, especially Aphthona flea beetle
  • grazing
  • revegetation
  • tillage
  • burning and clipping
  • decision aids
  • weed pathogens
  • and judicious use of herbicides

Extent of Implementation
Fiscal Years 1997-2001

  • Implemented across the four state area of Montana, Navada, South Dakota and Wyoming.
  • Covers the entire Little Missouri River drainage region.

Results to Date

  • Where Aphthona species have become established the insects wiped out leafy spurge and areas often remain spurge-free.
  • The flea beetles may take a while but it appears to be a permanent, long term and low-cost solution.
  • In 1999, at a "Spurgefest" field day in Medora, North Dakota, 20 million Aphthona flea beetles were given to ranchers and land managers for use.

Areawide Suppression of Fire Ants main menu

Last Modified: 8/1/2015
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