Some insects like bees and fire ants can be extremely dangerous by themselves, but when they get together in swarms is when you can really see some trouble. Just ask the National Weather Service Forecast Office in Oklahoma that recently picked up what appeared to be rain clouds over western North Texas.
This didn’t seem unusual until the forecasters realized that the clouds weren’t rain…the radar was picking up thousands of grasshoppers and beetles, very common in the agricultural area of Texas. Grasshoppers and beetles were flying between the ground and 2,500 feet, covering an area of about 50 miles. Even when the swarm isn’t raining down on you it is important to keep in mind that South Florida swarms can be just as problematic.
The term “swarm” can quickly bring buzzing bees to mind. Swarming is the process by which a new bee colony is formed when the queen bee leaves the colony with a large group of worker bees. Typically bees swarm in the spring as they search for an ideal spot to establish a new colony. The swarm can contain 5,000 to 20,000 bees and may be as small as a softball or larger than a basketball. In the prime swarm, about 60% of the worker bees leave the original hive location with the old queen.
Seeing a large cloud of flying bees that seems to drift along through the air can be somewhat frightening for those that are unfamiliar. But the swarm experts at Hulett know that swarming bees are carrying honey from their old hive and are much less likely to sting than they would be if they were protecting the old hive. Large bee swarms in a nearby tree or around your home can be unnerving but don’t worry, Hulett has you covered and can safely manage any bee swarm.
If you ask anyone who has been bitten, fire ants can be some seriously wretched creatures. A single fire ant bite is painful and can leave a red welt on your skin for days. But if you’ve disturbed one it’s almost certain that more are on the way. Fire ants get their name for their sting when the ant latches on with its jaws and injects a venom that causes pain which some have described as a burning pain. Although extremely rare, for those that are severely allergic, bites from a swarm of fire ants can cause death.
An ant swarm is one of the most efficient eating machines in existence as they attack en masse. Pretty much anything that they come across is ripped apart piece by tiny piece with their small but powerful jaws. Their cooperative nature means they can overcome almost any obstacle. In an interesting side note, effects resulting from climate change seem to be helping fire ants thrive like never before. Longer summers and warmer winters are allowing these ants to move farther and farther north without returning to the south for winter. Pretty soon even northerners may have to deal with fire ants in their pants.
If swarms are taking over your South Florida yard call the pest control professionals at Hulett today. We can get the swarm under control for you!