The HAL blog archive
ant clinic for small plant vendors
Monday, October 21, 2013
hi folks,

Hawaii Ant Lab will be holding a clinic for small nursery operators and plant vendors on 22 November.  Participants will need to be actively growing or selling plants at places like our farmers markets in order to be accepted for the clinic.  Please email Kanoe kanoe.malani@littlefireants.com, or call her at 808-315-5656 to request availability.

The clinic will run from 9.00am to 3.00pm with a one hour break for lunch.  Coffee and snacks will be provided (donation optional), but lunch will not.  Parking will be off-street as there is no parking available at the HDOA office.
Venue is the Hawaii Department of Agriculture Building, 16 East Lanikaula St Hilo.

congrats graduates of latest ant clinic!
congrats graduates of latest ant clinic!
Monday, September 30, 2013
We had another terrific group in the Hawaii Ant Lab last Friday 27 Sept 2013!  They were really enthusiastic and seemed to enjoy the day.  welcome to the ant-killer club folks!
next ant clinic on 9-27
next ant clinic on 9-27
Tuesday, September 03, 2013
We held our third ant clinic last week and 20 participants attended.  Everyone seemed happy with the information and training provided.  Our next clinic will be on 9-27 and hopefully this will help clear our waiting list.  Kanoe will contact wait-list people to confirm their attendance.

ad links on the site
Thursday, August 22, 2013
We are trialing some ad links on this site.  clicking on the ads generates a small amount of revenue which will be used to help maintain the site.
next clinic now full
Tuesday, August 06, 2013
All places for the next clinic have been filled, but Kanoe is still taking names for the next one.  please email Kanoe.malani@littlefireants.com if you would like your name on the list for a future clinic.
next ant management clinic, August 30
next ant management clinic, August 30
Friday, August 02, 2013
hi folks,
HAL had our first ant management clinic last week and it was so well received by participants that we have decided to hold a second clinic on August 30th.

time:  9.00am to 3.00pm

address:
Hawaii Department of Agriculture conference room
16 E' Lanikaula St Hilo HI

donation towards coffee and snacks appreciated.  no lunch provided but a selection of eateries nearby.

You MUST email Kanoe Malani - kanoe.malani@littlefireants.com to book a place.  We will contact those people on the waiting list also.  Not many places left so please book early.

where to get Xanthan gum
Thursday, July 25, 2013
Just found out the link to Philoutlet for buying xanthan gum no longer works.  You can still buy the rapid-dissolve xanthan through Ebay. 
just go here - http://stores.ebay.com/phil-outlet/_i.html?_nkw=xanthan+rd&submit=Search&_sid=1080504058
or click the header of this note to take you there direct.

What are all those flying "gnats" I'm seeing?
Wednesday, July 24, 2013
It’s the middle of summer here in Hawai‘i  island.  If you walk, play golf or ride a motorcycle, you will probably notice swarms of little flying gnats hovering around.  This happens mostly in mid or late afternoon when its sunny (or at least not raining).  What the hec are they???  Well, they are actually flying ants!  We have an ant species here called Brachymyrmex obscurior or the Rover Ant.  Its not native to Hawai‘i  (no ants here actually are), and we only see them this time of year, from June to August.  The Rover Ant is a small, cryptic ant that lives most of its life underground, in the thatch layer of grass and lawns.  Here they feed on the sugar exuded by root mealybugs and we pretty much never see them - except now…

New ant queens and the males have wings.  At certain times of year, whole swarms of these will take to the air and join the mile-high club.  Or at least, they will mate.  After mating, the new queens land and try to start new colonies.  the male ants are no longer needed and they eventually die.  Different species create these “nuptial flights” at different times of the year, different weather conditions, and will fly at different heights.  Rover Ants are really small and only fly up to around 15 feet.  This is the only time we ever notice Rover Ants because the rest of the year they live underground and away from view.  If you enjoy walking, playing golf or riding motorcycles, you will invariably end up surrounded by these little creatures at some time during the summer.  So, if anyone asks, or comments, you will be able to tell them that they are actually ants, not gnats!

For more information, go to the very knowledgeable folks at ANTWEB
<http://www.antweb.org/description.do?genus=brachymyrmex&name=obscurior&project=netherlandsants>

Gary Morton speaks about LFA in Australia
Wednesday, July 17, 2013
A colleague from Australia visited HAL during the week and we discussed the situation in Australia and shared new developments in control methods.  Gary returns to Cairns Australia on 7-20
next fire ant clinic booked out
Wednesday, July 10, 2013
Wow - demand for the fire ant clinic was a lot stronger than we expected!  Places for the clinic being held on 26 July have filled rather quickly and no further seats are available.  However, we plan to hold another one very soon.  If you are interested in attending the next clinic, please contact Kanoe - kanoe.malani@littlefireants.com and leave your name and contact details.  we will email you or call once the date for the next one is finalized.
workshop for residents managing Little Fire Ants: July 26
Monday, July 01, 2013
Hi folks.  This is a date claimer for July 26.

We plan to hold a one day workshop for people who want to learn how to manage Little Fire Ants around their homes.  The workshop will include sessions on mixing and applying granular and gel baits, discussions on the best bait brands, and safe pesticide handling by the HDOA Pesticide Education officer Dereck Shigematsu.

It will be held at the Hawaii Department of Agriculture offices on 16 E. Lanikaula St, starting 9.00 AM and finishing 3.00 PM.  Parking spaces are not available so people will need to park along Lanikaula St or elsewhere.

Seating is limited to 20 people, so first in, best dressed!  Please RSVP to Kanoe Malani:  kanoe.malani@littlefireants.com

Cas

Hawaii Tourism Authority awards HAL with grant
Friday, April 12, 2013
The Hawaii Tourism is funding a proposal from Hawaii Ant Lab and Hawaii County that aims to control increasing Little Fire Ant problems in public areas.  Some of Hilo's beach parks and the Panaewa Zoo are badly infested with LFA.  Visitors are being stung constantly by ants falling from trees.  HAL and Hawaii County can now work together to develop a solution and a treatment strategy for this problem.  Thank you Hawaii Tourism Authority!
next Little Fire Ant presentation
Wednesday, April 03, 2013
The Higashi garden club will host a presentation on Little Fire Ants at their next meeting on April 25th.  The meeting will be held at the Higashi Hongwanji church.
Farm bill grant awarded to HAL
Monday, April 01, 2013
USDA APHIS awarded HAL a small grant under the Farm Bill for 2013.  This grant will give us the opportunity to work with small scale plant vendors at Farmers Markets in the Hilo area.  We plan to engage the market organizers to provide training to small scale plant vendors.  We hope this will reduce the ant risks associated with buying potted plants at these venues.
Welcome to the new and improved HAL website!
Wednesday, March 20, 2013
We've been hard at work here at the Hawaii Ant Lab and have completely revamped our website.  Welcome to the new site and please send us your feedback and comments!
Next treatment date at Kauai
Tuesday, April 09, 2013
Michelle will be traveling to Kauai to complete the 6th treatment there.

Yellow Crazy Ants on Johnston Atoll
Wednesday, February 27, 2013
Met with the great folks from FWS today.  Stefan Kropidlowski, Sheldon Plentovich, Lee Ann Woodward and their colleagues have been doing great things on the eradication program there

2013
2014
2015
Big News - Provaunt now available for HAL gel bait!
Monday, December 15, 2014
After about 4 years of negotiations, we finally have a "Special Needs Permit" to allow Provaunt to be used in the HAL gel bait.

Provaunt contains indoxacarb which is a new class of pesticide with a very low non-target toxicity.  It works very differently from Tango and is very fast acting.  Ideally, I would recommend that people use Tango for 3-4 treatments, then switch to Provaunt bait.  This combination would have the best overall effect - the Tango disabling the queens, followed by Provaunt to wipe out any survivors.

We use this combination approach with the eradications on Maui, Kauai and Oahu and it has been very effective.

The Special Needs Permit can be downloaded by clicking this blog post.

Please call the lab or email us if you would like any more information.

cheers and happy holidays!

Cas

Mayor Caldwell pronounces Nov 1 as "Stop LFA Day"
Wednesday, November 05, 2014
Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell proclaimed November first as “Stop Little Fire Ant Day.”

That’s exactly what volunteers from Go Farm Hawaii did Saturday.

Volunteers surveyed areas in Waimanalo, looking for the tiny pest with a powerful punch.

all 2014 ant clinics now full
Wednesday, October 29, 2014
hi folks,
The remaining ant workshops scheduled for 2014 are now filled so we can not take any more bookings this year.  HAL will commence these workshops in January 2015, most probably at the end on January.  Thanks all who made these workshops so productive in 2014!

Next Ant Clinic - 21 November
Wednesday, October 08, 2014
hi folks,
The clinic on 31 October is now full and we are taking bookings for 21st November.  This will be the last clinic for 2014.  We will be taking a short break over the holiday season and plan to start again in February 2015.

Please email all inquiries to Heather - heather.forester@littlefireants.com or phone 315-5656

location:
Hawaii Department of Agriculture conference room
16 E' Lanikaula St Hilo HI


Sorry, but there is no off-street parking so please park along Lanikaula St or elsewhere.

donation towards coffee and snacks appreciated.  no lunch provided but a selection of eateries nearby.

Can you recommend a professional exterminator?
Thursday, September 25, 2014
We are often asked by callers to recommend a pest controller.  As a rule we do not specifically recommend a particular company.  However, we feel that the best pest exterminators are most likely members of an industry association - in this case the Hawaii Pest Control Association.  There will be oher good professionals out there as well but we have found that HPCA members tend to be very well informed, regularly attend conferences and meeting to keep up with the latest methods and are very professional.  Clicking on this blog link will take you to their page of Big Island members.  We have also added the link in our fact sheet menu.
Next Ant Management Clinics October 3rd and 31st
Tuesday, September 02, 2014
Hi fellow ant battlers

The next ant management clinic is scheduled for 3rd October.  There are just a few places for this workshop still available.  There will also be a clinic on 31st October which is currently open.  These clinics will be focused primarily on residents who wish to manage LFA around their homes.  We start with some ant biology basics, then participants will be guided through the various management techniques including practical demonstrations on how to apply granular baits and making the HAL gel bait.  Past clinics have been very well attended so please get your booking in early as there are limited seats available.
time:  9.00am to 3.00pm

address:
Hawaii Department of Agriculture conference room
16 E' Lanikaula St Hilo HI


Sorry, but there is no off-street parking so please park along Lanikaula St or elsewhere.

donation towards coffee and snacks appreciated.  no lunch provided but a selection of eateries nearby.

You MUST email Heather Forester - heather.forester@littlefireants.com to book a place.

new fact sheet added - LFA in mulch
Wednesday, August 27, 2014
We have added a new fact sheet to our series.  LFA in mulch and how to manage possible LFA colonies.  You can find it in the drop-down menu at the left of our home page.
Story on LFA in Aljazeera
Friday, August 22, 2014
Kirsten French, a journalist with Aljazeera USA recently visited HAL and wrote a story on the growing LFA problem here.  Read her story here.

http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2014/8/22/paradise-lost-hawaiisalieninvasion.html

Next Ant Management clinic is 25 July
Tuesday, June 24, 2014
Hi fellow ant battlers

The next ant management clinic is scheduled for 25th July.  This clinic will be focused primarily on residents who wish to manage LFA around their homes.  We start with some ant biology basics, then participants will be guided through the various management techniques including practical demonstrations on how to apply granular baits and making the HAL gel bait.  Past clinics have been very well attended so please get your booking in early as there are limited seats available.
time:  9.00am to 3.00pm

address:
Hawaii Department of Agriculture conference room
16 E' Lanikaula St Hilo HI


Sorry, but there is no off-street parking so please park along Lanikaula St or elsewhere.

donation towards coffee and snacks appreciated.  no lunch provided but a selection of eateries nearby.

You MUST email Heather Forester - heather.forester@littlefireants.com to book a place.

Next ant management workshop on July 25th
Next ant management workshop on July 25th
Monday, June 23, 2014
Hi fellow ant battlers

The next ant management clinic is scheduled for 25th July.  This clinic will be focused primarily on residents who wish to manage LFA around their homes.  We start with some ant biology basics, then participants will be guided through the various management techniques including practical demonstrations on how to apply granular baits and making the HAL gel bait.  Past clinics have been very well attended so please get your booking in early as there are limited seats available.
time:  9.00am to 3.00pm

address:
Hawaii Department of Agriculture conference room
16 E' Lanikaula St Hilo HI

an agenda can be downloaded by clicking this message

Sorry, but there is no off-street parking so please park along Lanikaula St or elsewhere.

donation towards coffee and snacks appreciated.  no lunch provided but a selection of eateries nearby.

You MUST email Heather Forester - heather.forester@littlefireants.com to book a place.

below is a map to HDOA office in Hilo


SMALL BOTTLES OF TANGO NOW AVAILABLE!
Monday, April 07, 2014
hi folks,

Fantastic news! Reggie Hassegawa from Crop Production Service just called to tell me that the 1 pint bottles of TANGO are now in stock. It will be available at the following locations and selling for $49.75 each.  One pint should be enough to last 1 year for an average urban houselot, or enough to treat around 2 acres depending on how much vegetation.

CPS Hilo
900 Leilani St Hilo ph (808)-935-7191
link to map - click here

Garden Exchange
300 Keawe Street. Hilo, HI 96720. ph (808)-961-2875
link to map - click here

Del's Farm Supply Hilo
199 Kalanikoa St. Hilo, HI 96720. ph (808)-935-6378
link to map  - click here

Al’s home and farm in Kona
81-940 Halekii St Kealakekua, HI 96750. ph (808)-322-3883
link to map - click here

Farm and Garden in Kona
73-5582 Olowalu St Kailua-Kona, HI 96740. ph (808)-329-4775
link to map - click here

Ant management workshop for small nurseries
Monday, March 24, 2014
The next ant management workshop will be on April 25th.  This workshop is specifically for owners and operators of small nurseries, plant vendors at farmers markets and hobbyists.


Please email Heather to reserve your place - heather.forester@littlefireants.com

date - April 25th, 9:00 am to 3:00 pm

address:
Hawaii Department of Agriculture conference room
16 E' Lanikaula St Hilo HI

There is no on-site parking, please park along the verge on Lanikaula st.

donation towards coffee and snacks appreciated.  no lunch provided but a selection of eateries nearby.



great workshop last week - next one scheduled for 21 March
Tuesday, March 04, 2014
We had one of the best ever ant clinics here at HAL last week!  This was the first clinic with new HAL staffers Trent, Matt and Heather.

The next clinic will be on March 21st.  Please email Heather to reserve your place heather.forester@littlefireants.com

address:
Hawaii Department of Agriculture conference room
16 E' Lanikaula St Hilo HI

donation towards coffee and snacks appreciated.  no lunch provided but a selection of eateries nearby.


28 February - Next Ant Management Clinic
Wednesday, February 05, 2014
after a brief break over the holiday season, our 2014 ant management clinics will commence on Friday February 28.

time:  9.00am to 3.00pm

address:
Hawaii Department of Agriculture conference room
16 E' Lanikaula St Hilo HI

donation towards coffee and snacks appreciated.  no lunch provided but a selection of eateries nearby.

You MUST email Heather Forester - heather.forester@littlefireants.com to book a place. 

meet Matt and Heather - new HAL staffers
Tuesday, February 04, 2014
hi folks,  Its been rather hectic here at HAL over the past couple months.  LFA have been found on Maui (again), Oahu as well as Lanai.  We farewelled Kanoe Malani who has accepted a position with the Hamakua Soil and Water Conservation District as a consevation planner.

Meet Matt Kema and Heather Forester - our new HAL staffers.They each bring wonderful new talents and skills to the Lab and I hope they stay with us for some time to come.

Gov Abercrombie presents award to Hawaii Ant Lab
Tuesday, January 14, 2014
Governor Abercrombie attended the premiere of the LFA documentary at Julia's Cafe on Monday 13th January.  At the event, he presented an award recognizing the contribution of Hawaii Ant Lab to invasive species management.  In his speech, he honored all invasive species battlers in Hawaii.  Michelle Montgomery and Cas Vanderwoude were there to receive the award.  Unfortunately, other HAL researchers Kanoe Malani and Matt Kema were unable to attend.

Gov Abercrombie spoke at length about the importance of this issue for his administration and has re-afirmed his committment to make this a high priority issue during the upcoming legislative session.


Gov Abercrombie highlights invasive species in his 2014 "State of the State" address
Thursday, January 23, 2014
Governor Neil Abercrombie highlighted invasive species and especially Little Fire Ants as a high priority concern for his administration in this week's "State of the State" address, calling invasive species a "Biological crisis"..

We are experiencing a biological crisis and deadly threat to our isolated ecosystem, our natural resources and our economy. A multitude of invaders - such as the little fire ant that can blind animals and destroy nesting birds and hatchlings, the coconut rhinoceros beetle, and parasites attacking coffee crops - graphically illustrate the seriousness of the issue


Yellow Ants on Johnston Atoll
Monday, December 14, 2015
Here's a great story about a 5 year project attempting to eradicate Yellow Crazy Ants from Johnston Atoll.  The ants had taken over the entire uninhabited island (a decommissioned naval base) and had driven out the seabirds that nested there.  Now, thanks to dozens of volunteers that worked tirelessly for 5 years, the ants are virtually gone!  This is an amazing achievement - congrats volunteers!
the story is here:
http://www.hakaimagazine.com/article-short/beating-back-crazy-ants

latest Farm Bill project now complete
Wednesday, December 09, 2015
Work on the USDA Farm Bill Grant to educate small plant vendors on preventing the spread of LFA has been completed. A total of 15 farmers markets were been identified and contacted between Kalapana and Waimea on the Island of Hawaii (Puna, South Hilo, North Hilo, Hamakua, and South Kohala Districts).

The main goal of this project was to increase understanding, acceptance, and support of plant pest and disease eradication and control efforts. The project reached out to vendors by collaborating with farmers market organizers and vendors, distributing educational materials, and providing training on simple treatment methods. These resources can be found at the top of the page.

The various farmers markets compete with each other for patronage from buyers. The ability to promote themselves as a venue for “pest-free” plants is a strong commercial advantage.  If farmers market coordinators are willing to place restrictions on non-complying plant vendors as a means of encouraging cooperation, the spread of LFA within the Island of Hawaii and onto neighbor islands can be substantially reduced.

A special thanks to Makuu Market and Hilo Coffee Mill for their participation and for allowing us to hold training sessions at their facilities. Also, thank you to all who attended the training sessions and are participating in the “No Ants in Our Plants” Program. For more information contact Heather Forester at
heather.forester@littlefireants.com

Oahu eradications going very well!
Monday, December 07, 2015
Great progress on Oahu eradication.  Mililani Mauka has been LFA free for over 6 months.  At the planned 6-month post-treatment monitoring survey in December 2015, the entire site was carefully surveyed for LFA by staff from HDOA, Hawaii Ant Lab and The Oahu Invasive Species Committee.  A big thank-you to everyone involved!  The eradication program at Waimanalo is also going very well.  This site is more challenging and the last survey found a single "hot-spot" which will need to be treated again.  The rest of the site was fire ant free.  Click the image to the right for the full story by KHON2.

Fact Sheet woes!
Tuesday, November 24, 2015
New Fact Sheet 8
It seems the scale we were using to convert weight measurements to teaspoons was not calibrated correctly.  So, we have revised the latest HAL Factsheet (Fact Sheet 8.3; gel baits) ingredient measures.  Please download the latest version here:

Error in latest fact sheet!
Monday, October 26, 2015
The latest fact sheet on mixing HAL gel baits had a few errors (I should have double-checked my math).  I have uploaded a new version (v. 8.2) today so if you have one of the old copies, please disregard and download the new one.
new HAL page - bait info
Friday, October 02, 2015
We have added another page to the website.  All the commonly available baits are listed with a summary the main things you might like to know.  Also available are the product labels and MSDS sheets for each bait.  CLick this blog item to visit the page or find the link on the "resources" tab.
New fact sheet - Mixing HAL bait
Monday, September 28, 2015
We have developed a new revised fact sheet that covers making HAL gel baits.  Besides extensive revisions, the instructions now include mixing for boric acid, Tango and Provaunt.  Please check it out - it can be downloaded from the "Resources" tab at the top of the page.
new LFA site on Maui
Monday, July 06, 2015
The Maui Invasive Species Committee folks have found another LFA site nin Maui - this time in Hana.  There will be a community meeting there on 9th July.  Click on this announcement to go to the Maui Now story.
26th June workshop is now full
Thursday, June 18, 2015
hi folks,
the ant management workshop for June 26 has now been filled and there are no additional places available.  The next workshop will be on 31 July.  Heather Forester (heather.forester@littlefireants.com) is taking bookings for this workshop

Workshop for plant vendors 23 June and 7 July
Friday, June 05, 2015
Hawaii Ant Lab is conducting workshops for plant vendors who wish to control Little Fire Ants in their potted plants and their nursery areas.  Click here to download the flyer which contains all the details you need to reserve your place.
Next Ant Management Workshop June 26
Monday, June 01, 2015
This free monthly workshop will be focussed primarily on residents who wish to manage Little Fire Ants around their homes.  We start with some ant biology basics, then participants will be guided through the various management techniques including practical demonstrations on how to mix and apply the HAL gel bait.  Past clinics have been well attended so please get your booking in as early as possible.  Limited places are available.  Please contact Heather at heather.forester@littlefireants.com
Go here for more info and online booking form:  www.littlefireants.com/amc.html
HAL working with HDOA and OISC to eradicate LFA in Mililani
Monday, February 23, 2015
Just over half-way through the treatment phase against LFA in Mililani (Oahu), it appears all is on-track for eradication.  HAL staffers have now applied five of the eight scheduled treatments and it is becoming very difficult to find any LFA on the Mililani site.  We are not very good at detecting small colonies so its best to assume some are hanging on even though we can't find them.  For this reason, we aim to coninue treating well beyond the time we last detected them.  This treatment phase will be followed by three years careful monitoring to make absolutely certain that all ants have been eliminated.  Click on this blog for the KITV report.
Ant Management clinics for 2015
Friday, January 23, 2015
hi folks!

Our monthly ant management clinics have proven to be very popular.  So popular in fact, that its hard to keep up with demand.

We have added a booking page to the website which includes all the workshop dates for 2015.  If you would like to attend any workshop this year, just go to the page and make a booking!

You can also get there by clicking this message.
New LFA infestation discovered on Maui
Monday, February 02, 2015
Yet another LFA infestation has been found on Maui - this time in Huelo on the north shore.  click this story for more information
a repository of information about invasive ants

July workshop is now full
Tuesday, June 14, 2016
the next workshop will be on August 26th.  Please book through our online booking system
June workshop is now full
Tuesday, May 31, 2016
June AMC workshop is now booked out.  The next workshop will be on July 29th
April Ant Management clinic now full
Monday, March 21, 2016
the April ant management clinic is now booked out.  the next available clinic is on May 27th.  click this entry to go to the booking page
March workshop full
Monday, March 14, 2016
hi folks,
the March ant management class is now booked out.  The next class will be held on April 29

Kamehameha student projects
Thursday, February 25, 2016

Science students of Kamehameha School at Keaau used Little Fire Ants as the topic of their science project.  They show an amazing range of skills from identifying LFA, using a GPS, videography and science.  Please enjoy!

click on this story to view the videos.
updated key to ants of Hawai`i
Tuesday, February 16, 2016
We have just updated the key to ants of Hawai`i.  some errors were resolved and a couple of recently discovered species were added.  click on this blog to download the latest version.
next ant management clinic: 26 February
Friday, February 05, 2016
The next HAL ant management class will be held on 26 February

time:  9.00am to 3.00pm
address: Hawaii Department of Agriculture conference room
16 E' Lanikaula St Hilo HI

donation towards coffee and snacks appreciated.  no lunch provided but a selection of eateries nearby.
You MUST book a place. 
click this story to go to the bookings page


revised bibliography
Friday, January 29, 2016
hi folks,
On the "research" tab there is a link to a bibliography of journal papers on LFA and related topics.  The references are linked to copies of the actual papers.  We have just revised and extended the list to add about 100 additional articles for your reading pleasure.

2016 ANT MANAGEMENT CLINICS
Tuesday, January 19, 2016
After a terrific 2015, our Ant Management Clinics for 2016 will commence on January 29.  There are still some places open for this clinic so please contact Heather through the AMC booking page.  Click on the blog to be redirected
Yellow Ants on Johnston Atoll
Monday, December 14, 2015
Here's a great story about a 5 year project attempting to eradicate Yellow Crazy Ants from Johnston Atoll.  The ants had taken over the entire uninhabited island (a decommissioned naval base) and had driven out the seabirds that nested there.  Now, thanks to dozens of volunteers that worked tirelessly for 5 years, the ants are virtually gone!  This is an amazing achievement - congrats volunteers!
the story is here:
http://www.hakaimagazine.com/article-short/beating-back-crazy-ants

latest Farm Bill project now complete
Wednesday, December 09, 2015
Work on the USDA Farm Bill Grant to educate small plant vendors on preventing the spread of LFA has been completed. A total of 15 farmers markets were been identified and contacted between Kalapana and Waimea on the Island of Hawaii (Puna, South Hilo, North Hilo, Hamakua, and South Kohala Districts).

The main goal of this project was to increase understanding, acceptance, and support of plant pest and disease eradication and control efforts. The project reached out to vendors by collaborating with farmers market organizers and vendors, distributing educational materials, and providing training on simple treatment methods. These resources can be found at the top of the page.

The various farmers markets compete with each other for patronage from buyers. The ability to promote themselves as a venue for “pest-free” plants is a strong commercial advantage.  If farmers market coordinators are willing to place restrictions on non-complying plant vendors as a means of encouraging cooperation, the spread of LFA within the Island of Hawaii and onto neighbor islands can be substantially reduced.

A special thanks to Makuu Market and Hilo Coffee Mill for their participation and for allowing us to hold training sessions at their facilities. Also, thank you to all who attended the training sessions and are participating in the “No Ants in Our Plants” Program. For more information contact Heather Forester at
heather.forester@littlefireants.com

Oahu eradications going very well!
Monday, December 07, 2015
Great progress on Oahu eradication.  Mililani Mauka has been LFA free for over 6 months.  At the planned 6-month post-treatment monitoring survey in December 2015, the entire site was carefully surveyed for LFA by staff from HDOA, Hawaii Ant Lab and The Oahu Invasive Species Committee.  A big thank-you to everyone involved!  The eradication program at Waimanalo is also going very well.  This site is more challenging and the last survey found a single "hot-spot" which will need to be treated again.  The rest of the site was fire ant free.  Click the image to the right for the full story by KHON2.

Fact Sheet woes!
Tuesday, November 24, 2015
New Fact Sheet 8
It seems the scale we were using to convert weight measurements to teaspoons was not calibrated correctly.  So, we have revised the latest HAL Factsheet (Fact Sheet 8.3; gel baits) ingredient measures.  Please download the latest version here:

Error in latest fact sheet!
Monday, October 26, 2015
The latest fact sheet on mixing HAL gel baits had a few errors (I should have double-checked my math).  I have uploaded a new version (v. 8.2) today so if you have one of the old copies, please disregard and download the new one.
new HAL page - bait info
Friday, October 02, 2015
We have added another page to the website.  All the commonly available baits are listed with a summary the main things you might like to know.  Also available are the product labels and MSDS sheets for each bait.  CLick this blog item to visit the page or find the link on the "resources" tab.
New fact sheet - Mixing HAL bait
Monday, September 28, 2015
We have developed a new revised fact sheet that covers making HAL gel baits.  Besides extensive revisions, the instructions now include mixing for boric acid, Tango and Provaunt.  Please check it out - it can be downloaded from the "Resources" tab at the top of the page.
new LFA site on Maui
Monday, July 06, 2015
The Maui Invasive Species Committee folks have found another LFA site nin Maui - this time in Hana.  There will be a community meeting there on 9th July.  Click on this announcement to go to the Maui Now story.
26th June workshop is now full
Thursday, June 18, 2015
hi folks,
the ant management workshop for June 26 has now been filled and there are no additional places available.  The next workshop will be on 31 July.  Heather Forester (heather.forester@littlefireants.com) is taking bookings for this workshop

Workshop for plant vendors 23 June and 7 July
Friday, June 05, 2015
Hawaii Ant Lab is conducting workshops for plant vendors who wish to control Little Fire Ants in their potted plants and their nursery areas.  Click here to download the flyer which contains all the details you need to reserve your place.
Next Ant Management Workshop June 26
Monday, June 01, 2015
This free monthly workshop will be focussed primarily on residents who wish to manage Little Fire Ants around their homes.  We start with some ant biology basics, then participants will be guided through the various management techniques including practical demonstrations on how to mix and apply the HAL gel bait.  Past clinics have been well attended so please get your booking in as early as possible.  Limited places are available.  Please contact Heather at heather.forester@littlefireants.com
Go here for more info and online booking form:  www.littlefireants.com/amc.html
HAL working with HDOA and OISC to eradicate LFA in Mililani
Monday, February 23, 2015
Just over half-way through the treatment phase against LFA in Mililani (Oahu), it appears all is on-track for eradication.  HAL staffers have now applied five of the eight scheduled treatments and it is becoming very difficult to find any LFA on the Mililani site.  We are not very good at detecting small colonies so its best to assume some are hanging on even though we can't find them.  For this reason, we aim to coninue treating well beyond the time we last detected them.  This treatment phase will be followed by three years careful monitoring to make absolutely certain that all ants have been eliminated.  Click on this blog for the KITV report.
Ant Management clinics for 2015
Friday, January 23, 2015
hi folks!

Our monthly ant management clinics have proven to be very popular.  So popular in fact, that its hard to keep up with demand.

We have added a booking page to the website which includes all the workshop dates for 2015.  If you would like to attend any workshop this year, just go to the page and make a booking!

You can also get there by clicking this message.
New LFA infestation discovered on Maui
Monday, February 02, 2015
Yet another LFA infestation has been found on Maui - this time in Huelo on the north shore.  click this story for more information
Provaunt in stock at CPS
Monday, January 26, 2015
hi folks,

CPS have just let me know that their shipment of Provaunt has arrived.  They have it in 12 oz bottles which will be a lot more useful to most people than the 120 oz ones they had until now.  Their location is 900 Leilani St Hilo which is the road to the Hilo Landfill.  Their warehouse is just past the Railroad st intersection.

Cas

Big News - Provaunt now available for HAL gel bait!
Monday, December 15, 2014
After about 4 years of negotiations, we finally have a "Special Needs Permit" to allow Provaunt to be used in the HAL gel bait.

Provaunt contains indoxacarb which is a new class of pesticide with a very low non-target toxicity.  It works very differently from Tango and is very fast acting.  Ideally, I would recommend that people use Tango for 3-4 treatments, then switch to Provaunt bait.  This combination would have the best overall effect - the Tango disabling the queens, followed by Provaunt to wipe out any survivors.

We use this combination approach with the eradications on Maui, Kauai and Oahu and it has been very effective.

The Special Needs Permit can be downloaded by clicking this blog post.

Please call the lab or email us if you would like any more information.

cheers and happy holidays!

Cas

Mayor Caldwell pronounces Nov 1 as "Stop LFA Day"
Wednesday, November 05, 2014
Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell proclaimed November first as “Stop Little Fire Ant Day.”

That’s exactly what volunteers from Go Farm Hawaii did Saturday.

Volunteers surveyed areas in Waimanalo, looking for the tiny pest with a powerful punch.

all 2014 ant clinics now full
Wednesday, October 29, 2014
hi folks,
The remaining ant workshops scheduled for 2014 are now filled so we can not take any more bookings this year.  HAL will commence these workshops in January 2015, most probably at the end on January.  Thanks all who made these workshops so productive in 2014!

Next Ant Clinic - 21 November
Wednesday, October 08, 2014
hi folks,
The clinic on 31 October is now full and we are taking bookings for 21st November.  This will be the last clinic for 2014.  We will be taking a short break over the holiday season and plan to start again in February 2015.

Please email all inquiries to Heather - heather.forester@littlefireants.com or phone 315-5656

location:
Hawaii Department of Agriculture conference room
16 E' Lanikaula St Hilo HI


Sorry, but there is no off-street parking so please park along Lanikaula St or elsewhere.

donation towards coffee and snacks appreciated.  no lunch provided but a selection of eateries nearby.

Can you recommend a professional exterminator?
Thursday, September 25, 2014
We are often asked by callers to recommend a pest controller.  As a rule we do not specifically recommend a particular company.  However, we feel that the best pest exterminators are most likely members of an industry association - in this case the Hawaii Pest Control Association.  There will be oher good professionals out there as well but we have found that HPCA members tend to be very well informed, regularly attend conferences and meeting to keep up with the latest methods and are very professional.  Clicking on this blog link will take you to their page of Big Island members.  We have also added the link in our fact sheet menu.
Next Ant Management Clinics October 3rd and 31st
Tuesday, September 02, 2014
Hi fellow ant battlers

The next ant management clinic is scheduled for 3rd October.  There are just a few places for this workshop still available.  There will also be a clinic on 31st October which is currently open.  These clinics will be focused primarily on residents who wish to manage LFA around their homes.  We start with some ant biology basics, then participants will be guided through the various management techniques including practical demonstrations on how to apply granular baits and making the HAL gel bait.  Past clinics have been very well attended so please get your booking in early as there are limited seats available.
time:  9.00am to 3.00pm

address:
Hawaii Department of Agriculture conference room
16 E' Lanikaula St Hilo HI


Sorry, but there is no off-street parking so please park along Lanikaula St or elsewhere.

donation towards coffee and snacks appreciated.  no lunch provided but a selection of eateries nearby.

You MUST email Heather Forester - heather.forester@littlefireants.com to book a place.

new fact sheet added - LFA in mulch
Wednesday, August 27, 2014
We have added a new fact sheet to our series.  LFA in mulch and how to manage possible LFA colonies.  You can find it in the drop-down menu at the left of our home page.
Story on LFA in Aljazeera
Friday, August 22, 2014
Kirsten French, a journalist with Aljazeera USA recently visited HAL and wrote a story on the growing LFA problem here.  Read her story here.

http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2014/8/22/paradise-lost-hawaiisalieninvasion.html

Next Ant Management clinic is 25 July
Tuesday, June 24, 2014
Hi fellow ant battlers

The next ant management clinic is scheduled for 25th July.  This clinic will be focused primarily on residents who wish to manage LFA around their homes.  We start with some ant biology basics, then participants will be guided through the various management techniques including practical demonstrations on how to apply granular baits and making the HAL gel bait.  Past clinics have been very well attended so please get your booking in early as there are limited seats available.
time:  9.00am to 3.00pm

address:
Hawaii Department of Agriculture conference room
16 E' Lanikaula St Hilo HI


Sorry, but there is no off-street parking so please park along Lanikaula St or elsewhere.

donation towards coffee and snacks appreciated.  no lunch provided but a selection of eateries nearby.

You MUST email Heather Forester - heather.forester@littlefireants.com to book a place.

Next ant management workshop on July 25th
Next ant management workshop on July 25th
Monday, June 23, 2014
Hi fellow ant battlers

The next ant management clinic is scheduled for 25th July.  This clinic will be focused primarily on residents who wish to manage LFA around their homes.  We start with some ant biology basics, then participants will be guided through the various management techniques including practical demonstrations on how to apply granular baits and making the HAL gel bait.  Past clinics have been very well attended so please get your booking in early as there are limited seats available.
time:  9.00am to 3.00pm

address:
Hawaii Department of Agriculture conference room
16 E' Lanikaula St Hilo HI

an agenda can be downloaded by clicking this message

Sorry, but there is no off-street parking so please park along Lanikaula St or elsewhere.

donation towards coffee and snacks appreciated.  no lunch provided but a selection of eateries nearby.

You MUST email Heather Forester - heather.forester@littlefireants.com to book a place.

below is a map to HDOA office in Hilo


SMALL BOTTLES OF TANGO NOW AVAILABLE!
Monday, April 07, 2014
hi folks,

Fantastic news! Reggie Hassegawa from Crop Production Service just called to tell me that the 1 pint bottles of TANGO are now in stock. It will be available at the following locations and selling for $49.75 each.  One pint should be enough to last 1 year for an average urban houselot, or enough to treat around 2 acres depending on how much vegetation.

CPS Hilo
900 Leilani St Hilo ph (808)-935-7191
link to map - click here

Garden Exchange
300 Keawe Street. Hilo, HI 96720. ph (808)-961-2875
link to map - click here

Del's Farm Supply Hilo
199 Kalanikoa St. Hilo, HI 96720. ph (808)-935-6378
link to map  - click here

Al’s home and farm in Kona
81-940 Halekii St Kealakekua, HI 96750. ph (808)-322-3883
link to map - click here

Farm and Garden in Kona
73-5582 Olowalu St Kailua-Kona, HI 96740. ph (808)-329-4775
link to map - click here

Ant management workshop for small nurseries
Monday, March 24, 2014
The next ant management workshop will be on April 25th.  This workshop is specifically for owners and operators of small nurseries, plant vendors at farmers markets and hobbyists.


Please email Heather to reserve your place - heather.forester@littlefireants.com

date - April 25th, 9:00 am to 3:00 pm

address:
Hawaii Department of Agriculture conference room
16 E' Lanikaula St Hilo HI

There is no on-site parking, please park along the verge on Lanikaula st.

donation towards coffee and snacks appreciated.  no lunch provided but a selection of eateries nearby.



great workshop last week - next one scheduled for 21 March
Tuesday, March 04, 2014
We had one of the best ever ant clinics here at HAL last week!  This was the first clinic with new HAL staffers Trent, Matt and Heather.

The next clinic will be on March 21st.  Please email Heather to reserve your place heather.forester@littlefireants.com

address:
Hawaii Department of Agriculture conference room
16 E' Lanikaula St Hilo HI

donation towards coffee and snacks appreciated.  no lunch provided but a selection of eateries nearby.


28 February - Next Ant Management Clinic
Wednesday, February 05, 2014
after a brief break over the holiday season, our 2014 ant management clinics will commence on Friday February 28.

time:  9.00am to 3.00pm

address:
Hawaii Department of Agriculture conference room
16 E' Lanikaula St Hilo HI

donation towards coffee and snacks appreciated.  no lunch provided but a selection of eateries nearby.

You MUST email Heather Forester - heather.forester@littlefireants.com to book a place. 

meet Matt and Heather - new HAL staffers
Tuesday, February 04, 2014
hi folks,  Its been rather hectic here at HAL over the past couple months.  LFA have been found on Maui (again), Oahu as well as Lanai.  We farewelled Kanoe Malani who has accepted a position with the Hamakua Soil and Water Conservation District as a consevation planner.

Meet Matt Kema and Heather Forester - our new HAL staffers.They each bring wonderful new talents and skills to the Lab and I hope they stay with us for some time to come.

Gov Abercrombie presents award to Hawaii Ant Lab
Tuesday, January 14, 2014
Governor Abercrombie attended the premiere of the LFA documentary at Julia's Cafe on Monday 13th January.  At the event, he presented an award recognizing the contribution of Hawaii Ant Lab to invasive species management.  In his speech, he honored all invasive species battlers in Hawaii.  Michelle Montgomery and Cas Vanderwoude were there to receive the award.  Unfortunately, other HAL researchers Kanoe Malani and Matt Kema were unable to attend.

Gov Abercrombie spoke at length about the importance of this issue for his administration and has re-afirmed his committment to make this a high priority issue during the upcoming legislative session.


Gov Abercrombie highlights invasive species in his 2014 "State of the State" address
Thursday, January 23, 2014
Governor Neil Abercrombie highlighted invasive species and especially Little Fire Ants as a high priority concern for his administration in this week's "State of the State" address, calling invasive species a "Biological crisis"..

We are experiencing a biological crisis and deadly threat to our isolated ecosystem, our natural resources and our economy. A multitude of invaders - such as the little fire ant that can blind animals and destroy nesting birds and hatchlings, the coconut rhinoceros beetle, and parasites attacking coffee crops - graphically illustrate the seriousness of the issue


HAL news
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