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New Bait Technology Controls Ants in Urban, Agricultural Environments

The Issue

Ants are the major pests in urban environments. Recent introductions of the red imported fire ant in urban environments in California pose a serious threat to agriculture. Argentine and field ants are a major pest in citrus and grapes, where they tend, or care for, homopteran pests and disrupt biological control.

What Has ANR Done?

Cooperative Extension Urban Entomologist John Klotz and AES Professor Michael Rust of the University of California, Riverside are developing low-toxicity liquid and granular baits as alternatives to insecticidal sprays for ant control. The use of baits is more effective and will substantially reduce the amount of insecticide used in urban and agricultural settings. The reduction of ants in agricultural settings will increase the effectiveness of biological control agents, thereby reducing insecticide applications. Drs. Rust and Klotz also are developing delivery systems for baits to minimize the exposure of the environment and crops to insecticide.

The Payoff

Baits, Toxicants Approved for Use in Citrus Orchards and Vineyards

Recently the Environmental Protection Agency approved the UCR propoal to register bait stations and toxicants for use in citrus orchards and grape vineyards in California. The clearance covers toxicants not previously registered for use in all fruit, nut, and vine crops throughout the United States.


Supporting Unit: UCR Entomology Department

Dr. John Klotz
University of California
Riverside, CA 92521
(909) 787-3898 (Voice)
(909) 787-3086 (Fax)

Dr. Michael Rust
102A College Building North
University of California
Riverside, CA 92521
(909) 787-5327 (Voice)
(909) 787-3086 (Fax)