ACROSS MISSISSIPPI — The Mississippi Department of Agriculture and Commerce’s (MDAC) Bureau of Plant Industry is providing assistance to Mississippi hay producers that are transporting baled hay into areas that do not have established populations of fire ants.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has a fire ant quarantine in place that restricts the movement of baled hay from infested areas to non-infested areas. The quarantine requires baled hay to be inspected and certified as apparently free of fire ants.
Due to drought conditions, a large volume of hay is being moved to parts of the Midwest, particularly Missouri and northern Arkansas where fire ants are not established. In order for hay produced in Mississippi to enter these areas, each load of hay will need to be inspected and certified as apparently free of fire ants prior to shipment.