Please wait a minute...
Journal of Integrative Agriculture  2022, Vol. 21 Issue (6): 1825-1829    DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(22)63903-0
Short Communication Advanced Online Publication | Current Issue | Archive | Adv Search |
First record of the little fire ant, Wasmannia auropunctata (Hymenoptera: Formicidae), in Chinese mainland
CHEN Si-qi, ZHAO Yi, LU Yong-yue, RAN Hao, XU Yi-juan
Red Imported Fire Ant Research Center, South China Agricultural University, Guangzhou 510642, P.R.China
Download:  PDF in ScienceDirect  
Export:  BibTeX | EndNote (RIS)      
Abstract  In January 2022, we received ant specimens collected from three field colonies from Shantou City, Guangdong Province, China.  They were identified as the little fire ant, Wasmannia auropunctata, through morphological and molecular analyses.  Wasmannia auropunctata is listed as one of the 100 most dangerous invasive species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and has spread from its native range in South America to every continent except Antarctica.  DNA analysis of mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI) in nine specimens of W. auropunctata found that they had a close genetic relationship with specimens from Argentina.  This study represents the first formal record of the establishment of W. auropunctata outdoor in Chinese mainland.  However, the invasion stage and occurrence degree of W. auropunctata in China are not clear to date.  The implementation of quarantine measures, investigation of the occurrence and distribution, and development of monitoring and control strategies are needed to actively respond to the threat posed by this highly invasive ant.
Keywords:  little fire ant        morphological identification       mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I  
Received: 01 March 2022   Accepted: 28 March 2022
Fund: This work was funded by the National Key Research and Development Program of China (2021YFC2600404).  
About author:  CHEN Si-qi, E-mail: 719855828@qq.com; Correspondence RAN Hao, E-mail: ranhao.cn@gmail.com; XU Yi-juan, E-mail: xuyijuan@yahoo.com

Cite this article: 

CHEN Si-qi, ZHAO Yi, LU Yong-yue, RAN Hao, XU Yi-juan. 2022. First record of the little fire ant, Wasmannia auropunctata (Hymenoptera: Formicidae), in Chinese mainland. Journal of Integrative Agriculture, 21(6): 1825-1829.

Le Breton J, Chazeau J, Jourdan H. 2003. Immediate impacts of invasion by Wasmannia auropunctata (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) on native litter ant fauna in a New Caledonian rainforest. Austral Ecology, 28, 204–209.
Bolton B. 2003. Synopsis and classification of Formicidae. Memoirs of the American Entomological Institute, 71, 1–370. 
Chen N Z, Wang Y P, Chen H J, Chen Y, Liu Z L. 2007. Prediction of potential distribution area of Wasmannia auropunctata in China. Chinese Bulletin of Entomology, 44, 855–858. (in Chinese)
Chifflet L, Guzman N V, Rey O, Confalonieri V A, Calcaterra L A. 2018. Southern expansion of the invasive ant Wasmannia auropunctata within its native range and its relation with clonality and human activity. PLoS ONE, 13, e0206602.
Fisher B L, Cover S P. 2007. Ants of North America. University of California Press, Oakland. 
Folmer O, Black M, Hoeh W, Lutz R, Vrijenhoek R. 1994. DNA primers for amplification of mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I from diverse metazoan invertebrates. Molecular Marine Biology and Biotechnology, 3, 294–299.
Hillis D M, Bull J J. 1993. An empirical test of bootstrapping as a method for assessing confidence in phylogenetic analysis. Systematic Biology, 42, 182–192.
Holway D A, Lach L, Suarez A V, Tsutsui N D, Case T J. 2002. The causes and consequences of ant invasions. Annual Review of Ecology and Systematics, 33, 181–233.
Jourdan H, Sadlier R A, Bauer A M. 2001. Little fire ant invasion (Wasmannia auropunctata) as a threat to New Caledonian lizards: Evidence from a sclerophyll forest (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Sociobiology, 38, 283–299.
Krushelnycky P D, Loope L L, Reimer N J. 2005. The ecology, policy, and management of ants in Hawaii. Proceedings of the Hawaiian Entomological Society, 37, 1–25.
Kumar S, Stecher G, Li M, Knyaz C, Tamura K. 2018. MEGA X: Molecular evolutionary genetics analysis across computing platforms. Molecular Biology and Evolution, 35, 1547.
Lee C C, Hsu P W, Hsu F C, Shih C H, Hsiao Y C, Yang C C S, Lin C C. 2021. First Record of the Invasive little fire ant (Wasmannia auropunctata) (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in Taiwan: Invasion status, colony structure, and potential threats. Formosan Entomologist, 41, 172–181. (in Chinese)
Longino J T, Fernández F. 2007. Taxonomic review of the genus Wasmannia. Memoirs of the American Entomological Institute, 80, 271–289.
Lowe S, Browne M, Boudjelas S, De Poorter M. 2000. 100 of the World’s Worst Invasive Alien: A Selection from the Global Invasive Species Database. Invasive Species Specialist Group, Auckland, New Zealand.
Romanski A. 2001. Introduced Species Summary Project: Little Fire Ant (Wasmannia Auropunctata). Columbia University, New York.
Rosselli D, Wetterer J K. 2017. Stings of the ant Wasmannia auropunctata (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) as cause of punctate corneal lesions in humans and other animals. Journal of Medical Entomology, 54, 1783–1785.
De Souza A, Delabie J, Fowler H. 1998. Wasmannia spp. (Hym., Formicidae) and insect damages to cocoa in Brazilian farms. Journal of Applied Entomology, 122, 339–341.
Vonshak M, Dayan T, Foucaud J, Estoup A, Hefetz A. 2009. The interplay between genetic and environmental effects on colony insularity in the clonal invasive little fire ant Wasmannia auropunctata. Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology, 63, 1667–1677.
Walker K L. 2006. Impact of the little fire ant, Wasmannia auropunctata, on native forest ants in Gabon. Biotropica, 38, 666–673.
Walsh P D, Henschel P, Abernethy K A, Tutin C E, Telfer P, Lahm S A. 2004. Logging speeds little red fire ant invasion of Africa. Biotropica, 36, 637–641.
Wetterer J, Walsh, P D, White L. 1999. Wasmannia auropunctata (Roger)(Hymenoptera: Formicidae), a destructive tramp-ant, in wildlife refuges of Gabon. African Entomology, 7, 292–294.
Wetterer J K, Porter S D. 2003. The little fire ant, Wasmannia auropunctata: Distribution, impact, and control. Sociobiology, 42, 1–41.
Xu Y, Vargo E L, Tsuji K, Wylie R. 2021. Exotic ants of the Asia-pacific: Invasion, national response, and ongoing needs. Annual Review of Entomology, 67, 27–42.
Zhao G, Jiang Y, Sui S, Kun G. 2018. Pests intercepted at several ports across the country. [2022-02-15]. http://www.customs.gov.cn/customs/xwfb34/302425/1840619/index.html (in Chinese)

[1] CHANG Jia-ying, LIU Shu-sen, SHI Jie, GUO Ning, ZHANG Hai-jian, CHEN Jie .
A new Curvularia lunata variety discovered in Huanghuaihai Region in China
[J]. >Journal of Integrative Agriculture, 2020, 19(2): 551-560.
[2] Daniel Bravo-Pérez, Ma. Teresa Santillán-Galicia, Roberto M. Johansen-Naime, Héctor González- Hernández, Obdulia L. Segura-León, Daniel L. Ochoa-Martínez, Stephanie Guzman-Valencia. Species diversity of thrips (Thysanoptera) in selected avocado orchards from Mexico based on morphology and molecular data[J]. >Journal of Integrative Agriculture, 2018, 17(11): 2509-2517.
No Suggested Reading articles found!