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The scourge of leaf cutter ants ...

I have a serious love-hate relationship with out leaf cutter ants. Normally I find their entire colony workings utterly intriguing and I am constantly astounded by what they are able to accomplish by working together.

Yet, today was one of those hate days.

I got a call early this morning telling me that our ants were misbehaving. I went in and one of the tubes on the back of the exhibit had fallen off so there was a quarter size hole for all the ants to frolic on through. The back of the exhibit is pretty well contained so the vast majority of the ants that came out were in the work area ... but they weren't to happy with being manhandled back towards their home. These girls can't sting to communicate their displeasure but they have a nasty pair of jaws that can leave quite the imprint. They also don't just bite anywhere but more often then not look for joints or soft points so they can get the most reaction from their ire.

It took about 3 hours but we got the vast majority of the delinquents back into the foraging area. By the end of it I had to go to the bathroom twice because I (literally) had ants in my pants. I was pulling them out of my hair for a few hours after leaving the exhibit. I admit it is times like these that you have to sit back and laugh because if you don't have a sense of humor about it than you are going to have a *VERY* bad day.

Yep ... tomorrow the ants don't get any treats from me! No orange peal - they are only getting tallo until they learn to behave again. :)

Comments

( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
aniaj
Aug. 11th, 2009 04:41 am (UTC)
I have them in my yard - all my rhododendrons have lovely scalloped edges and they pretty much decimated the strawberry patch. They are at the same time one of the two pollinating insects left in this area (the bees are pretty much gone), so I just grit my teeth and bear it.

They really bite?
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )

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