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World’s Largest Yellow Crazy Ant Eradication: A Triumph in the Wet Tropics

World's Largest Yellow Crazy Ant Eradication: A Triumph in the Wet Tropics

In a groundbreaking achievement, the Wet Tropics Management Authority has successfully cleared 365 hectares of rainforest, farmland, and suburban areas around Cairns of the notorious Yellow Crazy Ants.

This marks the most extensive eradication of these invasive pests globally, showcasing the effectiveness of a $6 million-per-year joint eradication program funded by the Albanese and Miles governments since 2013.

Residential Victory in Bentley Park

Notably, the eradication area encompasses 615 residential home lots in Bentley Park, setting a record for the highest number of residential properties declared Yellow Crazy Ant-free in a single period.

This success follows over a decade of relentless efforts, starting with broad-scale treatments and progressing to surveys and spot treatments.

Key Statistics

Yellow Crazy Ants have been wiped out from more than 450 hectares so far, with 2300 hectares across 46 separate infestations in the Wet Tropics currently under management.

The infestation area is now 70% under long-term monitoring, underscoring the commitment to ongoing success.

Impacts on Biodiversity and Economy

Discovered in Cairns in 2001, Yellow Crazy Ants rank among the world’s 100 worst invasive species.

Their aggressive swarming devastates ecosystems, posing a threat to invertebrates, small animals, and local economies.

The Australian and Queensland governments, in collaboration, aim to protect the unique biodiversity of the Wet Tropics, reinforcing their dedication to preserving World Heritage values.

Townsville’s Vigilance

While celebrating this triumph, Townsville remains vigilant. The Townsville Biosecurity Plan identifies Yellow Crazy Ants as a critical priority, with ten known infestations.

Residents are urged to report any suspected sightings to the Townsville City Council.

A Shared Commitment

With strong community support, industry collaboration, and ongoing commitments, the Wet Tropics Management Authority is optimistic about eradicating the remaining infestations and safeguarding the region’s ecological treasures for future generations.