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Red fire ants have also arrived in Europe

Red fire ants have also arrived in Europe

Invasive insects cause significant damage to their new habitats.

new Stady Red fire ants also appeared in Sicily (Solenopsis invicta) – writes A Science Alert. This is the first time this species has been discovered in Europe, although several contaminated products have previously been discovered at the border.

These insects are originally native to South America, but are now also found in Australia, New Zealand, several countries in Asia, the Caribbean, and the United States. Red fire ants cause significant damage to native species in their new habitats.

The animals are currently the fifth most expensive invasive species on the planet, and insects cause billions of dollars in environmental damage worldwide.

Experts fear it will spread in Europe as well as other parts of the world.

“It was a big surprise to find this species in Italy, but we knew this day would come,” he said. Mattia Menchettia fellow of the Spanish Institute of Evolutionary Biology and a member of the team.

The ant’s sting is extremely painful, and one of their distinctive features is that they can kill larger prey by forming huge groups of up to half a million. As colonies spread, they destroy plants and animals, and they also harm people.

These species can invade mainly those sites that have already been disturbed by humans. According to researchers, the spread of insects is practically unstoppable.

Menchitti and his colleagues discovered specimens near Syracuse, finding a total of 88 nests. It is not clear how these species arrived in the area, but afforestation and agricultural projects in recent years are likely behind it. There is a major port nearby, and insects may have been brought from there. By the way, residents of the area have been reporting bites since 2019.

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Researchers estimate that about 7% of Europe’s land area has a climate suitable for invaders, including half of Europe’s urban areas.

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