Fire Ants

One of the things I want to do now that I have consolidated blogs is to talk more about my home. I love living in North Carolina, and while I haven’t been to a plethora of places, I have been to several. I’ve never found a place that suits me better than here, not even across the ocean. When I was away, I only wanted to get back. And now that I’m here, I’m still loving it, and I can’t imagine ever leaving again, aside from vacations. Which I also like a whole bunch, but that is not today’s topic.

Today’s topic is Fire Ants!

What a title for a first post celebrating North Carolina, eh? Well, I have a friend and I mentioned the wee buggers to her one day, and she was enthralled. See, she lives where there are no fire ants, and so since “she’s not from here, bless her heart”, I’m gonna humor her a bit. Kinda like Crazy Aunt Fanny, ykwim?

fireantcloseupNow, fire ants are tiny things. This picture was taken with my macro function and yes, those are actual grains of sand, and the actual ants swarming in them. You can click the picture to see it bigger. Now, fire ants bite to get a grip, and then they sting repeatedly. People usually encounter them when they disturb a “bed” without realizing where they are going. That’s one good reason to wear shoes year-round, now isn’t it? One would think so, but the truth is the nasty things can get inside your shoes before you can back out of the bed. People have died from fire ant bites, because the venom can cause anaphylactic shock. You can read more about them at Wikipedia

I was asked how big a fire ant mound gets, so I have taken this picture with a 3×5 card for scale. Bear in mind that all the dirt you see on top of the ground came from under it, so this is just a part of the colony. It goes at least that deep underground, and probably much deeper. I don’t plan to dig in there to find exact measurements if it’s all the same to you.