Survival Skills of the Fire Ant
- Everything… that’s what’s for dinner. Fire ants are not picky. If there is food to find, they will eat it. Since they are omnivorous, they will eat other insects, spiders, mice, rats, turtles, snakes, lizards, sapling trees, seedlings, seeds, plant bulbs, fruit and grass. Pretty much, if it is alive, they will try to eat it. Because they have such a diverse appetite, they can survive anywhere there is food.
- The work of a queen is never done. While a normal fire ant will only live two to six months, a queen can last anywhere from two to seven years. A queen can lay 1,500 to 1,700 eggs every day. Unlike common American ants, fire ant colonies can have multiple queens. That means their colonies can be huge, and any workers that are killed will be replaced quickly.
- Let’s build a body boat. When the rains come down, and flood waters strike fire ants cling together and form a floating raft with their bodies. They keep the queens protected while the rest of the ants lock legs. They can survive a few weeks on the water. When the flood waters recede, they start a new home. Torrential rains are not a problem for this critter.
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