If you’ve spent any time in the southern United States, you know there is one type of bug that brings a lot of fear among southerners — fire ants. They seem to infest every homeowner’s yard and wreak havoc on their playsets and gardens. They are smart, tough ants that have taken over most of the southern United States within only the last 100 years.
Fire ants are extremely durable, and part of it has to do with their ability to withstand floods in the south. According to Neal Lineback and Mandy Lineback Gritzner of National Geographic Society Newsroom, “[f]ire ants are not native to the United States. They hail from oft-flooded regions of Brazil and Argentina, which likely explains their raft-building abilities” (Linebeck et al. Geography in the News: Fire Ants, Surviving and Thriving). Fire ants are able to link to each other’s appendages forming a raft and float together for months on end to keep from being swept away.
Like most species of ants, each mound contains a queen. A “colony may number 250,000 ants, occasionally including new queens. These new queens can fly to new territories several hundred yards or meters away, where they may lay eggs and establish new colonies” (Linebeck et al. Geography in the News: Fire Ants, Surviving and Thriving). Among those, more queens might arise nurturing hundreds of thousands of more fire ants. That is why their mounds arise so quickly!
But why are they called fire ants? It’s because their sting actually feels like fire! But they aren’t just stinging, but biting and stinging. They bite to keep hold of their victim while they sting making it more painful for their victim.
So, if you’re being overrun by fire ants in middle Tennessee, it’s time to call a pest control professional!
Give our office a call today, and let us keep your home pest free!