Fire Ants – Never has an animal been more appropriately named.
I grew-up playing baseball on red-ant infested lots & ball fields in North Central Oklahoma. They are beasts which will give you a whale of a sting when you trespass upon their territory. Regular ants will protect themselves; if you are improvident enough to stand on their little conical home and make a few twirls and then reach down and rake them around a bit, some will rise in defence of home & hearth.
But, if you find yourself standing in the middle of nowhere and have even checked for God’s creatures underfoot and found none and you are quietly feeling the soft breeze or smelling the sweet honeysuckle on that breeze; minding your own innocent business completely…AND Suddenly…you feel as if your leg has been engulfed by a wildfire…a back-draft from hell…Then…you look down to per chance see a measly half-dozen tiny ants across your foot…Congratulations!…you have met the infamous Fire Ant!
These beasts are amongst the very few creatures which attack unprovoked. Totally undisturbed they will stalk a human being to the far corners of the earth. A lone Fire Ant can spy a human standing unaware at 50 yards (the rough equivalent of Forest Gump’s run across the breadth of the North American continent). Said Ant will run at fastest pace, burning precious energy, across the US to have even a half-chance as causing intense pain.
Fire Ants are the most inviolably hateful and poison illegal aliens to ever invade North America. I am fully aware that some Native Americans would argue this point. Most of these fellow Americans are the Sioux or Crow or Blackfoot – northern nations who have yet to come into contact with these heathern beasts. I am sure that there were visitors to the Sioux council fires who warned, “the white strangers, barbarians, are coming; you Need To Do Something to prepare!!!”
To the everlasting regret of the tribal leaders, who simply sat eyeing each other wondering at the seeming insanity of these Easterners, did nothing and found themselves with 5 white acres and a stupid-looking mule.
Remember this when you find yourself staring in wonder at the tiny ants who have sunk mandibles into your flesh and buried their stingers ankle-deep and pumped as much poison into you as they possibly can, and you are convinced the earth’s mantle has evaporated and you are sinking into pools of unbelievably blistering-hot magma. There is no need to look at the USDA lists or the Texas Extension Service website…they Are Fire Ants.
I’ve heard that you can see 1,000 common non-venomous snakes but when you see your first rattlesnake you will know, without doubt, as you look into those evil black eyes, that you are in the presence of most-foul death. Fire Ants are much the same. But even the most evil snake will give a human a wide berth.
One more time…I will scream to you – They Are Coming! They have temporarily halted round about my house, but only to become adapted to the cooler weather northwards. They are building their numbers and stock-piling poison for the coming march. But soon they will adapt and survive and bite and sting their way into your yards and fields and fill your breaker boxes and kid’s sandboxes and bring welts and blisters upon YOUR body!
You Have Been Warned!!!