Information for Alabama Residents

Imported Fire Ants October 11, 2017 Print Friendly and PDF
phorid flies found in Alabama 2014
Decapitating fly distribution in Alabama, November, 2014

Since 1998, the Alabama Fire Ant Management Program has been releasing decapitating flies, natural enemies of imported fire ants. Thus far, five species of decapitating flies have been released in Alabama: Pseudacteon tricuspis, Pseudacteon curvatus, Pseudacteon litoralis, Pseudacteon obtusus, and Pseudacteon cultellatus. These flies, originally from Brazil and Argentina, were imported by the USDA Agricultural Research Service. Extensive testing in South America and in quarantine facilities at the USDA-ARS, CMAVE lab in Florida has shown that the decapitating flies are not harmful to humans, mammals, or other groups of insects. It is hoped that these organisms will provide a natural, biological control of fire ants.

To see the decapitating flies in action:


Imported Fire Ant species in Alabama, October 2009

Red Imported Fire ant species and Black Imported Fire Ant species can hybridize. This map displays where each species or hybrid has been collected in Alabama.

For more information on imported fire ants in Alabama please see:


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This work is supported by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, New Technologies for Ag Extension project.