Tags: floating | fire ant | colonies | harvey

Floating Fire Ant Colonies Accompany Harvey Flooding

(Video via Twitter/@Mike_Hixenbaugh)

By    |   Monday, 28 August 2017 03:00 PM

At least one floating fire ant colony has appeared in the floodwaters of Harvey, prompting concerns that residents fleeing their homes may be stung by the creatures if they touch the mound.

The colony was spotted in Houston with photos posted online being retweeted more than 5,000 thousands of times. Touching a fire ant colony, even with another object like a boat oar, could lead to being stung since the ants will likely climb across the object seeking sensitive flesh, Fox News said.

The Texas A&M Agrilife Extension service warned people not to have any contact with the floating nests, and cautioned that the ant islands are occasionally even found inside flooded buildings, Fox reported.

Extension specialist Paul Nester recommended that people wear cuffed gloves, rain gear and rubber boots to protect themselves from the ants, and said that if ants do get onto the skin, they should be brushed off immediately. Spraying them with diluted dishwashing liquid may work to immobilize and drown them, Nester said. People can also rub them off, but if underwater, they may cling tightly and not wash off at all.

Alligators and a bat colony also have been displaced by the floods, but an image of a shark on the Houston freeway is fake and has been circulating since 2011 during Hurricane Irene.

Houstonia advised staying off the flooded streets to avoid coming in contact with any dangerous animals or insects.

This tweet poked fun at those who were expecting the sneaky insects to drown in the water.

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At least one floating fire ant colony has appeared in the floodwaters of Harvey, prompting concerns that residents fleeing their homes may be stung by the creatures if they touch the mound.
floating, fire ant, colonies, harvey
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2017-00-28
Monday, 28 August 2017 03:00 PM
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