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Invasive creatures are on the march


Invasive creatures are on the march

Residents are being asked to stay vigilant and stamp out fire ants.

The Invasive Species Council is calling on community members to be aware of fire ants across the region and help do their part to report nests.

It comes after confirmation of fire ant nests near Nirimba (Caloundra South) – the first time the invasive species has been spotted on the Coast since 2017.

The National Fire Ant Eradication Program is working to eradicate the nests and has a dedicated site for people to help stop the spread. Invasive Species Council advocacy manager Reece Pianta says
that with many people out enjoying the school holidays, it is important to step up and “join the fire ant fight”.

He suggests keeping a look out for suspicious ants or ant mounds when in the garden, at the park, while walking, camping or at the beach.

“It’s really easy to do your part,” he says.

“Just take a picture of any suspicious ants and report it.

“And don’t worry if you’re not sure what type of ant it is. Every picture that is sent in will be vital information for the eradication program.

“Of course, fire ants are dangerous.

“Don’t put yourself, clothing or belongings in direct contact with ants or their nests.

“If your kids are curious about an ant nest they’ve seen, make sure you go with them and ensure they stay at arm’s length when taking a photo.”

More information can be found at or call 13 25 23.

If fire ants spread across Australia, impacts COULD include:

  • $2 billion per year in economic burden
  • agriculture output being cut by up to 40 per cent
  • 140,000 extra medical visits and 3000 anaphylactic reactions every year
  • about 60 per cent of people being stung every year
  • damage to water and electrical infrastructure
  • a decline in native wildlife population numbers and habitat loss
  • worse numbers than cane toads, rabbits, foxes and feral cats combined.


Two schools in the Sunshine Coast region have been awarded grants to support outdoor learning projects.

Peachester State School and Siena Catholic Primary School are recipients of the $1000 Woolworths Junior Landcare Grants. Each grant will help grow projects that focus on sustainable food production, improving waste management practices or enhancing native habitats.

“It’s great to see local schools from across the Sunshine Coast being awarded grants as part of this year’s program,” Woolworths Sunshine Coast operations manager Rob Kouimanis says.

“There’s lots of creative ideas that’llget students outdoors and hands-on with nature. We’re looking forward to seeing these ideas come to life in the next few months.”

Landcare Australia CEO Dr Shane Norrish says the grants help teach children how to care for their environment. “Hundreds of Queensland schools have been able to further support environmental champions and support Sunshine Coast students to develop hands-on skills that they can take with them when they leave school,” he says.

Sunshine Coast Woolworths store teams visited the local schools to present the grants.

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