FMC, Trad’s Pest Control rid school of fire ants

August 7, 2013 -  By

In northern Florida, this summer’s excessive rains have caused fire ant populations to explode. At one school, the fire ant problem was so bad that Trad’s Pest Control, a Jacksonville-based pest control and lawn care firm, stepped up to help for free.

The company donated a fast-acting fire ant treatment to the grounds of San Juan del Rio Church and School in St. Johns County. The school’s fire ant problem had grown significantly over the summer, when turf was untreated and heavy rains caused the red imported fire ant population to boom.

“We first learned about the problem at San Juan from an employee and decided to do something to help,” said Denise Wartan, general manager, Trad’s Pest Control. “We can’t have little kids, some of whom might be allergic to fire ant venom, coming in contact with ants. People talk a lot about bed bugs, crazy ants and mosquitoes, but fire ants are by far the worst pest we have here in north Florida.”

Because the company is certified in “integrated pest management” for schools, it uses approved, low-impact products and treats in a manner to limit children’s exposure, according to Wartan.

Trad’s Pest Control donated the manpower whereas FMC Professional Solutions provided Talstar XTRA granular insecticide with Verge technology. The product controls fire ant mounds in as little as 15 minutes while generating virtually no dust or odor when applied, according to FMC.

“Verge technology is based on the same technology as kitty litter,” Wartan said. “It’s a clay-based granule that breaks down and disappears into to the soil quickly and stays there. This is great for schools that need help fast, but also need a solution that lasts.”

Red imported fire ants live in mounds in all types of turf, along driveways and sidewalks and just about anywhere there is ample soil and moisture. When disturbed, fire ants will attack intruders, stinging multiple times. Each year, fire ants cost Florida more than $1 billion in property and agricultural damage, medical treatments and control expenses.

“We are so appreciative to Trad’s for taking action,” said a representative of San Juan del Rio. “Now our children and their families are safe from fire ant stings.”

 

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