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Taking the sting out of Little Fire Ant in Hawaii


  • Lee, Donna J.
  • Motoki, Michael
  • Vanderwoude, Casper
  • Nakamoto, Stuart T.
  • Leung, PingSun


In the 1990's, Little Fire Ants (LFAs) found its way to the island of Hawaii, most likely traveling with a shipment of potted plants from Florida. These plants were subsequently sold to consumers along the east coast of the Island, along with Little Fire Ant colonies living in the potting medium. LFA is now thriving and continues to spread. Fifteen years after the initial detection in 1999, LFA has spread to over 4000 locations on the island of Hawaii and has been found in isolated locations on Kauai, Maui, and Oahu Islands. Current efforts are expected to contain the infestations on the other islands but significant additional investment is needed to halt the rapid spread of LFA on the island of Hawaii.

Suggested Citation

  • Lee, Donna J. & Motoki, Michael & Vanderwoude, Casper & Nakamoto, Stuart T. & Leung, PingSun, 2015. "Taking the sting out of Little Fire Ant in Hawaii," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 111(C), pages 100-110.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ecolec:v:111:y:2015:i:c:p:100-110
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2015.01.010

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Olson, Lars J. & Roy, Santanu, 2003. "The Economics Of Controlling A Biological Invasion," Working Papers 28591, University of Maryland, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics.
    2. Olson, Lars J., 2006. "The Economics of Terrestrial Invasive Species: A Review of the Literature," Agricultural and Resource Economics Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 35(01), pages 178-194, April.
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    4. Haight, Robert G. & Polasky, Stephen, 2010. "Optimal control of an invasive species with imperfect information about the level of infestation," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(4), pages 519-533, November.
    5. Burnett, Kimberly & Kaiser, Brooks & Roumasset, James, 2007. "Economic lessons from control efforts for an invasive species: Miconia calvescens in Hawaii," Journal of Forest Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(2-3), pages 151-167, August.
    6. Mark Eiswerth & Wayne Johnson, 2002. "Managing Nonindigenous Invasive Species: Insights from Dynamic Analysis," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 23(3), pages 319-342, November.
    7. Perrings, Charles, 2005. "Mitigation and adaptation strategies for the control of biological invasions," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(3), pages 315-325, February.
    8. Mehta, Shefali V. & Haight, Robert G. & Homans, Frances R. & Polasky, Stephen & Venette, Robert C., 2007. "Optimal detection and control strategies for invasive species management," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(2-3), pages 237-245, March.
    9. Lee, Donna J. & Adams, Damian C. & Rossi, Frederick, 2007. "Optimal Management of a Potential Invader: The Case of Zebra Mussels in Florida," Journal of Agricultural and Applied Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 39(s1), pages 69-81, October.
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