Submitted to: Imported Fire Ants Conference Proceedings
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/9/2005
Publication Date: 12/7/2005
Citation: Vogt, J.T., and Coy, S.E. The imported fire ant mound in three dimensions. Imported Fire Ants Conference Proceedings. 2005.
Interpretive Summary: Manual interpretation of aerial images for detection of fire ant mounds is labor intensive and time consuming. Researchers in the USDA, ARS Biological Control of Pests Research Unit in Stoneville, MS found unique fire ant mound characteristics based on mound shape that can be used for computerized detection of mounds in images. Mathematical models of mound shape based on shape characteristics will be useful to industry partners that are developing automated detection systems.
Technical Abstract: A handheld laser scanner was used to obtain three dimensional point clouds of imported fire ant mound surfaces. A light dusting of talcum powder to the mound surface increased scanning efficiency by increasing reflectivity of the mound surface. Preliminary morphometric analyses indicated consistent deviations from normality in cross sectional profiles of the mounds, taken through the weighted centroid. The weighted centroid of the mounds tended to be offset to the north.