Today was the first day for a mass emergence of flying ants: that’s about three weeks later than it ‘usually’ happens here.
For a couple of weeks, the smaller male winged ants have been creeping out of cracks and crevices, only to be dragged back in by the regular worker ants. Today, the time was right and the boys got their freedom.
The ants are ‘supposed’ to mate in the air, but they’re quite happy to do it anywhere…
Once mated, the new queen sheds her wings and scurries around looking for a new place to start her own colony.
Happily, thanks to the birds and the spiders, not all the flying ants make it to start new colonies.
The Society of Biology have an interesting pdf factsheet about flying ants available to download here.