Nearly 50K ha treated in Lockyer

National Fire Ant Eradication Program field teams will treat with handheld spreaders and utility terrain vehicles in both the Lockyer Valley and Somerset regions until late June. Picture: NFAEP

The National Fire Ant Eradication Program (NFAEP) has reported treatment of nearly 50,000 hectares of land in the Lockyer Valley, with treatment ‘just around the corner’ for the Somerset region.

An NFAEP spokesperson said field teams would treat with handheld spreaders and utility terrain vehicles in both areas until late June.

“Fire ant eradication treatment is well underway in the Lockyer Valley with 49,413 ha complete of the 60,900 ha scheduled,” the spokesperson said.

“Treatment is just around the corner for the Somerset region with aerial treatment due to start within the next 2 weeks, weather permitting.

“Treatment can only be applied when conditions are suitable, which means unfavourable weather such as rainy or windy conditions can impact the delivery and timing of treatment.

“We cannot treat if the ground is wet, and our aircraft cannot fly if there are high winds.”

Fire ant treatment is safe for people and animals and is approved by the Australian Pesticide and Veterinary Medicines Authority.

The spokesperson said eradication efforts would continue ‘for years to come’.

“We need to treat the area multiple times over several years,” they said.

“It is vital we treat 100% of properties in the fire ant eradication treatment area, whether fire ants are visible or not.

“Missing properties or treating them in a non-systematic way increases the risk of missing nests and jeopardises national eradication efforts.”

Residents can see if they are in a planned eradication treatment area by using the interactive map available at

“If we do not stop them, fire ants could infest all of Australia, rendering our green spaces unusable and having an adverse effect on our outdoor way of life, native animal species, and our ability to produce food,” the spokesperson said.