Tips on using fire ant baits successfully
- Only use baits that are specifically labeled for fire ants.
- Read the label twice, once before you buy and again before you treat.
- Apply fire ant baits by broadcasting them over the entire yard.
- Don’t apply too much. The rate for most baits is only one to two pounds per acre.
- Use a spreader specifically designed for fire ant bait.
- Avoid irrigating for at least two days after applying baits.
- Try to avoid applying baits just before rainfall.
- Treat again if rainfall occurs within 12 hours after a bait application.
- Use fresh bait. Ants don’t like old bait that has gone rancid.
- Be patient. Baits are slow-acting.
- Apply fire ant baits preventively. Don’t wait till you see large mounds.
- Apply baits one to three times per year, depending on location.
- Use the holidays, Easter, Independence Day, and Labor Day as reminders.
- Use individual mound treatments to eliminate mounds the baits miss.
Contact information for Dr. Blake Layton.
Fire ants are everywhere. If you’ve thrown your hands up in exasperation trying to deal with them, don’t give up just yet. (File photo by MSU Extension Service)
Mississippi has an abundance of bugs, especially in the warmer months. We are all familiar with mosquitoes, bumblebees, and house flies. But I bet there are bugs around your house and yard that you can’t identify. (Photo by Blake Layton)
Just when we think we’ve conquered our tiny foes, it rains, and fresh fire ant mounds pop up in our yard.
Like many tasks around the house, fighting fire ants feels like a constant battle. My husband and I finally started seeing some progress when we followed recommendations from MSU Extension’s expert, Dr. Blake Layton. (Yeah, that’s a side benefit of my job, learning all kinds of practical information!)
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Southern farmers may never win the battle against imported fire ants, but aggressive tactics can slow the pests’ invasion, reduce damage and prevent further spread across the United States.
Jane Parish is an Extension/research professor with the Mississippi State University Extension Service and the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station. She said cattle and hay producers have learned to live with and work around the troublesome ants since the pests arrived in the state almost a century ago.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- People have many misconceptions on how to eliminate fire ant mounds and prevent them from coming back, and these erroneous beliefs hinder efforts to keep the harmful pest from spreading.