The Weather Channel provides information on severe weather, storms, floods, earthquakes and other natural phenomena that may disrupt daily life. They have added a new warning: Fire Ants. Tropical Storm Cindy left flooding in its wake including many areas containing fire ant nests.
Fire ants are native to South America where flooding is common. Fire ants have adapted to flooding by linking legs and forming a raft. Not only do fire ant colonies survive, but they can disperse to new areas in this manner.
Fire ant rafts pose a hazard to those who contact them. If a raft is contacted, fire ants may move onto the person and begin biting and stinging. People moving through flood waters cannot retreat rapidly from the raft. Fire ant colonies may also drift into flooded homes or colonize furniture or other household items. Homeowners are warned to be careful when handling these items.