Fire ants in Queensland
Fire ants are dangerous, imported pests that could spread to large areas of Australia. Fire ants could severely damage the environment, our outdoor lifestyle, and the agriculture and tourism industries. They inflict a painful, fiery sting, which can, in rare cases, cause a severe acute allergic reaction (anaphylaxis).
Since fire ants were first detected in the Brisbane area in February 2001, they have spread across South East Queensland. Nests have been found in an area spanning an estimated 600,000 hectares. Changes have been made to the Biosecurity Regulation 2016 to help stop the spread through human-assisted movement.
The National Red Imported Fire Ant Eradication Program has made significant progress in eradicating fire ants from Australia. Surveillance is ongoing, treatment and suppression measures are continuing in areas of South East Queensland where the ants have been detected.
It is essential that you remain vigilant and report any suspected sightings to the National Red Imported Fire Ant Eradication Program on 13 25 23.
- Read more about the National Fire Ant Eradication Program.
- Last reviewed: 24 Feb 2022
- Last updated: 24 Feb 2022