Flying Ant Day(s) 2011

Flying Ants - 1

Sooo… I don’t know what’s happening this year but the (flying) ants are going crazy. The above pic is on Green Lane, Rose spotted the ants as we were on our way to another supreme Thai Boran feast. And that photo is from July 3rd!

Flying Ants - 1

Then there’s the above pic. As I came back to my car (parked in Allestree), I noticed flying ants on it. That was just last week, July 27th.

Flying Ant

Then the last pic, above, is from today, August 1st. As Tracey, Amy, Nat and I were walking back from town, we noticed flying ants. I say “noticed” – they were everywhere on Sadler Gate. Kept landing on our arms and hair, itchy hell.

So, what’s going on? I missed last year’s FAD but normally the little critters are pretty synchronised. This year… some have been coming out nearly a month in advance of others. I thought the whole point of mass beastie movements like this was to cut the impact of predation? Indeed, says this ant expert:

“They monitor the day length, humidity and temperature to pick just one day a year to mate.”
(Source: BBC News)

Well, maybe in Scotland, pal, but down here, they’re all over the shop!

What is going on with you, flying ants? I am concerned. I hope it’s not some kind of eco-doom ant confusion.

Because I do love flying ants. Yes, they can be a bit of nuisance but their life cycle is a little miracle: the winged females taking to the air, trying to establish new colonies. Shedding their wings, most of them dying. I’m glad they have a day all of their own. I’m a little worried if that’s becoming a month due to ant confusion.

SO: Don’t tread on an ant, she’s done nothing to you. There might come a day when she’s treading on you…