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Fire ant biosecurity zones

Changes have been made to the Biosecurity Regulation 2016 to help in the fight against fire ants. If you move materials that may carry fire ants, it is important that you familiarise yourself with the changes in fire ant movement controls.

Fire ant biosecurity zones are in place in areas of Queensland to restrict the movement of materials that could spread fire ants.

Under the Biosecurity Act 2014, individuals and organisations whose activities involve the movement or storage of materials that may carry fire ants will have a general biosecurity obligation (GBO) to take all reasonable steps to ensure they do not spread fire ants.

The Biosecurity Regulation 2016 prescribes procedures that you must follow when moving or storing a high-risk material. Find out more about the procedures for managing materials that might carry fire ants. Specific provisions are not provided for all situations and there is flexibility to find better ways of managing risks.

There are 2 fire ant biosecurity zones in Queensland. Refer to the fire ant biosecurity zone map to see the boundaries of each zone.

The table below outlines certain requirements you must meet before moving materials that may carry fire ants.

Alternatively, you can use our fire ant advice tool to find out what requirements you have to meet.

Material Fire ant biosecurity zone 1 Fire ant biosecurity zone 2
Soil (includes fill, clay, scrapings, and any material removed from the ground at a site where earthworks are being carried out)

Soil can be moved from its original place in zone 1 directly to a waste facility in either zone 1 or zone 2.

Soil from a place in zone 1 can be moved to a place within zone 1 or zone 2 without a biosecurity instrument permit (BIP). Follow the measures for managing soil in a fire ant zone.

All movement of soil to outside of the fire ant biosecurity zones requires a biosecurity instrument permit.

Soil from a place in zone 2 can be moved within zone 2 without a biosecurity instrument permit (BIP). Follow the measures for managing soil in a fire ant zone.

You need to obtain a BIP before moving the soil to a place in zone 1.

Soil can be moved from its original place in zone 2 directly to a waste facility in zone 2. You'll need a BIP to move the soil to a waste facility in zone 1.

All movement of soil to outside of the fire ant biosecurity zones requires a biosecurity instrument permit.

Baled hay, including straw or sugarcane mulch

Potted plants

Turf

Animal manure

Mulch

Other materials that may carry fire ants, including mining/quarry products or by-products

To move these materials from a property within any of the 2 fire ant biosecurity zones, you must either:
  • follow movement and storage procedures outlined in the Biosecurity Regulation 2016. Refer to the guidelines for managing materials that may carry fire ants
  • or
  • move the material directly to a waste facility (zone restrictions apply)
  • or
  • move the material within 24 hours of it being on the property

If you are unable to fulfil the above conditions, then you must request a biosecurity instrument permit from an inspector.

To move these materials from a place within zone 1 or zone 2 you must either:

  • follow movement and storage procedures as outlined in the Biosecurity Regulation 2016. Easy-to-follow guidelines are available online
  • or
  • move the material directly to a waste facility, as follows:
    • material from zone 1 can be moved to a waste facility in zone 1 or 2
    • material from zone 2 can be moved to a waste facility in zone 2 only
  • move the material within 24 hours of it being at the original place.

If you are unable to fulfil the above conditions then you must request a biosecurity instrument permit.

Fire ant biosecurity zone maps and information

Moving materials that may carry fire ants interstate

Other states and territories place conditions on the movement of materials that may carry fire ants from Queensland, and these conditions may differ from Queensland's movement controls. If you are moving materials that may carry fire ants interstate, contact the entry state to confirm the entry conditions.

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