Biosecurity Queensland ignores persistent fire ant infestations in swamp areas (fire ants natural habitat) at a sporting facility in Brisbane’s south-west. The swamp drains into Oxley Creek then the Brisbane River. In 2017-18 Biosecurity Queensland was scheduled to treat persistent fire ant nests in Brisbane, Ipswich, Logan and Gold Coast cities. They abandoned the plan after just six months because they were being swamped with reports of fire ant nests from the public: and dumped the problem back onto the public. In 2017-18 Biosecurity Queensland was scheduled to develop a protocol for landowner to treat their own properties. They didn’t. Landowners and residents who treat fire ant nests themselves run the risk of being stung or making the infestation worse: which is what happened at the sporting facility: fire ant nests kept spreading after staff treated them. Fire ants have infested Brisbane’s south-west since at least 2001. It is time for a Senate Inquiry in Biosecurity Queensland’s waste of a colossal $400m of public money. 17th November 2018
Fire ants continue to infest a swamp area that regularly floods after heavy rain at a sporting facility in Oxley: a suburb 10km south-west of Brisbane’s CBD. Fire ants originated in wetlands in South America and are used to having their nests flooded. When that happens, up to 500,000 fire ants will surround their queen and her eggs to form a living raft: then float downstream until they reach dry ground.
Fire ants have infested the suburb of Oxley since at least 2001. The swamp area at the sporting facility feeds into Oxley Creek which runs through many residential suburbs before emptying into the Brisbane river. But sporting facility staff and Oxley residents in general are forced to deal with fire ant infestations themselves because Biosecurity Queensland will not.
Biosecurity Queensland was scheduled to treat all persistent infestation in Brisbane, Ipswich, Logan and Gold Coast cities during 2017-18: including Oxley. Biosecurity Queensland abandoned that plan after just six months because it was being swamped with reports of fire ant nests from the public: forcing the public to deal with the problem themselves.
During 2017-18, Biosecurity Queensland was scheduled to develop a protocol for landowners and businesses to treat their own properties. They didn’t. Citizens who treat fire ant nest themselves run the risk of being stung and run the risk of making the infestation worse: which is the case at the Oxley sporting facility. After staff treated the nests, they, or new ones, popped by close by. After staff treated them again, they, or new ones popped up close by.
Biosecurity Queensland has wasted a colossal $400+m of public money over the past seventeen years. Fire ants are now virtually out of control. The infestation is over 400,000ha: ten times what it was in 2001. Biosecurity Queensland’s incompetence puts our outdoor lifestyle, unique environment and economy at risk. It is time for a Senate Inquiry into Biosecurity Queensland’s colossal failure.