Tuesday, July 1, 2008

The ants have gone crazy

Here is a press release the Texas Department of Agriculture issued on the treatment of crazy ants:

The Texas Department of Agriculture has been granted approval by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to issue a Section 18 crisis exemption allowing the use of fipronil (Termidor SC) to control the crazy ant species (Paratrechina spp.nr. pubens/fulva) in designated counties.

The ant has become a serious nuisance in parts of Houston, where its infestation was calculated at approximately 50 million ants per acre in early June. This Caribbean invader is responsible for causing electrical shortages in homes and businesses throughout the Houston area.

"There are many things Texans cannot control, such as the weather and current gas prices, but they should be able to control pests from invading their homes and businesses," Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples said. "Texans deserve access to the best pest control technology available, and this treatment should bring relief."

Termidor SC, manufactured by BASF, may be applied following all directions, restrictions and precautions on the EPA registered product label, as well as restrictions within the exemption notice. The crisis exemption is effective June 30 and will remain in effect until EPA makes a decision on the Section 18 specific exemption TDA will submit.

Only certified and licensed applicators or persons under the direct supervision of licensed applicators can apply Termidor SC to infected areas in the following Texas counties: Brazoria, Galveston, Harris, Jefferson, Liberty, Montgomery and Wharton.

For more information, contact your county Texas AgriLife Extension Service office or TDA at (512) 463-7544. A copy of the approval notice is located on the TDA Web site at www.tda.state.tx.us.

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