Evansville has a new invasive species to be on the lookout for now.

Indiana has several invasive species that we have covered in the past. Some of these include the dreaded stink bug, the spotted lanternflyspider crickets, wheel bugs, and even invasive weeds like poison hemlock. Now, we can add one more invasive species to the list here in Indiana, and more specifically, the Evansville area.

Asian Needle Ant Found In Evansville

The Asian Needle Ant is an invasive insect that is typically found in southern states. However last week, it was discovered the furthest north the Asian needle ant has ventured...in Evansville, Indiana.

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In an article from Indy Star, Timothy Gibb, an entomologist at Purdue University, says:

It's the first ant in Indiana that has a stinger and venom sac. For many years, experts have assured Hoosiers there aren't any ants with stingers in the area, but that's not the case anymore.

Of all places for this ant to pop up in Indiana, it decides to visit Evansville?! That's comforting.

How Harmful Are Asian Needle Ants To Humans?

As previously mentioned, these ants have a stinger and a venom sac. That means there's a good chance that you could get stung by one if in very close proximity. According to NC State Entomology:

The Asian needle ant poses a triple threat to humans. First, its venomous sting is painful, and on average, somewhat more likely to cause an allergic reaction than the venom in a honey bee’s sting. As a result, people allergic to insect stings should take special care to avoid stings when in an Asian needle ant-infested area.

The second threat that the Asian Needle Ant poses to humans is its ability to infest homes. It is typically spotted in kitchens near food. This leads to the possibility of one stinging you. Finally, the third threat "is its potential to devastate a natural environment by excluding native ant species and termites, " according to NC State Entomology. These invasive insects have the ability to eliminate other native species that play essential roles in maintaining the status quo of the forest ecosystem.

Credit: April Nobile / © AntWeb.org / CC-BY-SA-3.0
Credit: April Nobile / © AntWeb.org / CC-BY-SA-3.0

How To Remove Asian Needle Ants From Your Property

If you spot an Asian Needle Ant in your home, you can simply remove them by sucking them up with a  vacuum cleaner. This will help prevent getting stung. Also, make sure that you close up any food containers, as they have been known to be found in kitchens near food. You can also make your home less appealing to these ants by sealing up cracks and crevices, keeping your grass mowed, eliminating standing water areas, and removing dead trees from your property. According to The University of Kentucky, you can also use granular baits and target their nesting sites and other areas with high ant activity.

Asian Needle Ant photo by April Nobile / © AntWeb.org / CC-BY-SA-3.0 [No Changes Made]

15 Animals that Could Attack You in Evansville

Evil squirrels, killer bunnies, terrifying geese, and more are featured in this gallery of real-life animal stories.

25 Hidden Evansville Secrets That May Blow Your Mind

An Evansville resident recently posted a question in the "I Grew Up in Evansville, Indiana" Facebook group asking other members to share any hidden or little-known facts about our city not many residents would know. The answers were wide-ranging, covering everything from our manufacturing history to our place in Civil War, to a couple of popular landmarks still standing today that were the first in the entire state of Indiana. No matter how long you've lived here, chances are there will be a few things on this list you didn't know about the city we call home.

SEE: 15 Animals You Cannot Own in Evansville

I got the idea for this after seeing an article by Michelle Heart with our Townsquare Media sister-station, 107.9 Lite-FM in Boise, Idaho. She had discovered several animals residents in that city can't own based on city codes she found online which got me thinking about whether Evansville had any regulations that were similar. Obviously, they did or this article wouldn't exist. Chapter 14, Article 3, section 42 and 43 spell out a lengthy list of exotic animals you can get in trouble owning if local officials find out. You can see the entire list on the city's website. These are the 15 I found to be the most interesting.



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