A study was conducted in northeastern Mississippi to examine temporal foraging activity of imported fire ants (Solenopsis spp.) and other common ant species that inhabit pasture and meadow. Baited vials were placed horizontally on the ground along straight-line transects (n = 21) every 3 h for 24 h periods during June–August. Vials remained on the ground for 30 min, then were quickly plugged with cotton and collected. Principal species captured in baited vials included Solenopsis spp. (black and hybrid imported fire ant) (90.6%), Solenopsis molesta (Say) (5.9%), Monomorium minumum (Buckley) (2.5%), Tapinoma sessile (Say) (0.7%), and Paratrechina vividula (Nylander) (0.3%). Imported fire ants foraged during all time periods, as did S. molesta and P. vividula. Tapinoma sessile and M. minimum slowed or ceased foraging at night. Forelius pruinosus (Roger) was captured on a single date while sampling at 1800 h. Implications for timing of bait applications against imported fire ants are discussed.

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Author notes

1Mention of trade names or commercial products in this publication is solely for the purpose of providing specific information and does not imply recommendation or endorsement by the U. S. Department of Agriculture or Mississippi State University.

3Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology, Mississippi State University, Mississippi State, Mississippi 39762.