What is this Environmental Assessment about?
The U.S. Forest Service at Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area is asking for public input on an Environmental Assessment for the Treatment of Imported Fire Ants.
The proposed project, Treatment of Imported Fire Ants on Land Between the Lakes, is available at http://data.ecosystem-management.org/nepaweb/nepa_project_exp.php?project=45540.
The environmental assessment and supporting documentation is also available for review at the Land Between the Lakes administration office.
Comments must be received by July 31, 2017. See “How to Comment” below.
Imported fire ants are an invasive species that occur throughout much of the southeastern United States. In recent years, they have been found in Land Between the Lakes. They are a hazard to human health and safety, and can threaten native plants and wildlife.
In 2015 we completed a categorical exclusion to treat fire ants in developed areas. This environmental assessment evaluates the potential effects of treating imported fire ants area-wide in Land Between the Lakes.
- Chapter 1 presents the need for action and a description of the proposed action.
- Chapter 2 presents the two project alternatives:
- Alternative 1 to treat imported fire ants with insecticides area-wide, and
- Alternative 2 to treat in developed areas only.
- Chapter 3 compares the environmental effects of the two alternatives.
The decision maker will consider the results of this analysis to make an informed decision for the appropriate alternative.
The proposed action is to treat imported fire ants with approved insecticides wherever they occur at Land Between the Lakes. The proposed insecticides have been registered for use by the Environmental Protection Agency. The registration process includes rigorous standards for human and environmental safety.
The main method for treating imported fire ants involves placing a few tablespoons of bait granules containing insecticide around the base of individual fire ant mounds. Fire ants quickly pick up the bait granules and bring them inside the mound.
If the proposed action is implemented, we would follow Area Plan standards and project design criteria to avoid adverse impacts to natural resources. The proposed action would benefit many of the analyzed resources in the long term. The proposed action also includes an environmental education component to educate visitors, employees, and the general public about safety and treatment of imported fire ants.
The no action alternative would be no treatment of imported fire ants area-wide. The no action alternative would result in negative effects to many resources as imported fire ants become widely established at Land Between the Lakes.
Treating imported fire ants area-wide will have a positive effect on the area and help us meet Area Plan goals. The actual treatments would be on a very small number of acres. Treating them area-wide now could prevent or delay the need for more widespread treatment in the future.
How to Comment
Comments should be specific, within the scope of the proposed action, have a direct relationship to the proposed action, and must include supporting reasons for the responsible official to consider.
Written comments must be received by July 31, 2017:
- Tina R. Tilley, Area Supervisor
Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area
100 Van Morgan Drive, Golden Pond, KY, 42211
- Tina R. Tilley, Area Supervisor
- [email protected]
- Submit electronic comments in a format such as an email message, plain text (.txt), rich text format (.rtf), or Microsoft Word (.doc, .docx).
- Hand Deliver
- Land Between the Lakes administrative office from 8:00 am to 4:30 pm Monday through Friday, excluding holidays.
Please state “Treatment of Imported Fire Ants” in the subject line when providing electronic comments or on the envelope when replying by mail.
For More Information
For questions regarding this project, please contact Steven Bloemer, Wildlife Program Manager, by phone at 270.924.2069 or by email at [email protected].
We encourage you to learn more about our project planning.
Visit http://data.ecosystem-management.org/nepaweb/project_list.php?forest=110860 for more project information at Land Between the Lakes.