Fire ants were first detected in Oxley, 10km south-west of the Brisbane CBD in 2001. Biosecurity Queensland has spent $400m, treated thousands of nests numerous times. They’re still there and still putting the public at risk of burning fire ant stings Biosecurity Queensland’s NEW $411m Ten Year Fire Ant Eradication Program (2017-2027) promised to treat persistent fire ant infestations in the eastern part of the infestation: in Ipswich, Brisbane, Logan, Redland Bay and Gold Coast cities. Three-quarter of the way through the first-year of the New Ten Year Program, Biosecurity Queensland had virtually abandoned treating nests in the east, in part, because they were being swamped with reports of fire ant nests from the public. They had also abandoned their commitment to treat, or even mark, fire ant nests in public places like the footpath along busy Oxley Road. In July 2018, the Fire Ant Program General Manager told ABC radio that Biosecurity Queensland was phasing out the use of marker flags on fire ant nests in public places. Biosecurity Queensland continues to puts the public at risk of burning fire ant stings. 25th October 2018
More, unmarked, untreated fire ant nests have been found on a footpath beside busy Oxley Road, in the suburb of Oxley, 10km south-west of the Brisbane CBD.
Fire ants were first detected in Oxley in 2001. Biosecurity Queensland has spent $400m since 2001 trying to eradicate them from south-east Queensland. Biosecurity Queensland has treated thousands of nests in Oxley numerous times: they still persist and they still put public safety at risk.
In July 2017, the Commonwealth government gave Biosecurity Queensland another $411m of public money for a NEW Ten Year Fire Ant Eradication Program. The main thrust of the new plan was to significantly increase the area of the infestation that receives multiple, consecutive treatments of bait.
The Work Plan for 2017-18 called for three rounds of broadcast bait, during the treatment season, over the western parts of the infestation in the Lockyer Valley and the Scenic Rim and spot treatments to suppress persistent infestations in the east: in Ipswich, Brisbane, Logan, Redland Bay and Gold Coast cities.
By the end of March 2018, the results were appalling. In the west, Biosecurity Queensland managed to put down only one and a half rounds of broadcast bait over its targeted areas during the treatment season. In the east, Biosecurity Queensland virtually abandoned treating persistent infestations to divert resources to the west and because they were being swamped by reports of fire ant nests from the public.
Biosecurity Queensland’s only commitment in the east, then, was to treat nests that posed a high risk to public safety. But unmarked, untreated fire ant nests on a foot-path beside busy Oxley Road is sure evidence that Biosecurity Queensland cannot meet that commitment and has no intention of doing so.
In July 2018, the Fire Ant Program General Manager told Steve Austin on ABC radio that Biosecurity Queensland was phasing out the use of marker flags on fire ant nests in public places.
Biosecurity Queensland continues to put the public at risk of severe, burning fire ant stings