Colony types

There a two different fire ant nest types in Australia.

Close up image of a red imported fire ant carrying bait into nest.

There are two different fire ant nest types in Australia, each requiring different treatment methods.

Fire ant nest types in Australia are:
·   Monogyne — contains a single fire ant queen
·   Polygyne — contains multiple fire ant queens.

Monogyne nests

Ants from monogyne nests are typically more territorial, spread further during a mating flight and have smaller nests and populations.

Polygyne nests

Ants from polygyne nests tend to form large, heavily populated colonies and tend to mate and spread over the ground and therefore over shorter distances.

Polygyne nests make up a small percentage of fire ant nests in Queensland, but are more difficult to destroy and ultimately require more rounds of bait.

With potentially hundreds of queens per nest, they are more likely to be spread as a result of human-assisted movement and pose a greater spread risk to Australia.

For this reason, we closely monitor and study their nests and ensure additional rounds of treatment are applied to polygyne nests.