Gov't Discusses Measures to Prevent Spread of Poisonous Fire Ants

Write : 2017-10-03 13:41:09 Update : 2017-10-03 13:48:43

Gov't Discusses Measures to Prevent Spread of Poisonous Fire Ants

The government has held an emergency meeting to discuss measures to prevent the spread of poisonous stinging fire ants, after they were found in the southern port city Busan last week.

Some 25 fire ants were found in a container storage area at a harbor in Busan last Thursday. Quarantine authorities found one thousand fire ants near what appears to be a nest the following day.

It is the first time that the venomous insects native to South America have been discovered in South Korea.

The Animal and Plant Quarantine Agency on Monday held an emergency meeting with agricultural, environmental and maritime officials to discuss measures to prevent the highly invasive red ant species.

The officials decided to conduct an inspection in the harbor area until next Thursday and enhance monitoring to prevent possible spread of and damages from the ants.
 
Roh Soo-hyun, Head of Plant Quarantine Department, said that quarantine authorities banned the movement of containers within a 100 meter radius of the site where the ants were found and administered pesticides in and around the container yards.
 
Roh Soo-hyun, Head of Plant Quarantine Department:
"We plan to conduct an inspection for the harbor area until next Thursday and check 22 airports and harbors nationwide for possible entry of additional fire ants."
 
Quarantine authorities also launched a probe of the inflow of the invasive foreign species, asking Korea Customs Service to provide documents on all containers to and from the container yards for the past three months.
 
Quarantine authorities advised people to use caution to avoid ant stings and get treatment at hospital when they have unusual symptoms from ant stings.
 

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