Friday, August 27, 2010

Flying Ant Day

Apparently, it's not just me that calls it that, according to Wikipedia, it's actually the informal name given to what I witnessed today - the day that the queen ants emerge and take to the skies, with some male counterparts, to mate with members from other colonies, and found a new one.

I saw many of them resting in the sparse grasses above their colony in our backyard, trying to figure out how to use these wing-thingies on their backs. Many crawled on the ground occasionally taking off for short hops in the sky, only to fall back down, or fluttering their wings, shaking them out without taking off. Some hovered in small swarms over nearby treetops. It's very interesting to watch.

No less interesting was the larger-than-normal number of our friends in the sky, dragonflies. Always glad to see them as they eat mosquitoes and the like, but today they were doing amazing aerial acrobatics as they attempted to feast on the new flying snacks that had appeared. I had two flying side by side, heading right for my face, and like some sort of air show, they both diverged at the last second in a sweeping arc, over and up. Beautiful, really!

I'm no big fan of ants, but still, I gotta give them a salute and a "good luck" in their crazy journey - imagine, a being that lives almost exclusively underground, growing wings and taking to the skies to find a new place to live!

No comments: