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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Response of Baiomys taylori to changes in density of imported fire ants

Published source details

Killion M.J., Grant W.E. & Vinson S.B. (1995) Response of Baiomys taylori to changes in density of imported fire ants. Journal of Mammalogy, 76, 141-147


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Remove/control non-native invertebrates Terrestrial Mammal Conservation

A replicated, controlled, before-and-after study in 1989–1990 in coastal grassland and shrubland in Texas, USA (Killion et al. 1995) found that after the control of red imported fire ants Solenopsis invicta, capture rates of northern pygmy mice Baiomys taylori increased. Northern pygmy mouse capture rates increased more where red fire ants were controlled (from 6–9/plot during first three months (over winter) of ant control to 19–25/plot nine months later) than in uncontrolled areas (8–9/plot during first three months of ant control to 11–15/plot nine months later). Captures were similar between plots in the summer before treatments began (19–27 mice/plot). In June 1989, two 110 × 130-m plots were established at the Welder Wildlife Foundation refuge. Each plot was divided into a treatment area and an untreated area. In treatment areas, an aerosol insecticide (active ingredient 0.7% pyrethrin) was injected directly into ant mounds while a bait insecticide (active ingredient 0.88% amidinohydrazone) was deployed monthly, from November 1989 to October 1990. Between June 1989 and October 1990, mice were sampled for four days/month using 108 baited Sherman live traps/plot. Animals were marked at first capture, and only included in analysis when caught for a second time.

(Summarised by Ricardo Rocha)