Monday 27 June 2011: Preparing for launch
A hot and steamy day round here today. We had to resort to the air conditioning in the office after lunch. Short walk with a friend - too hot to linger in search of a blip.
Part of the ceiling in the office next door came down this morning - the waste pipe from an air conditioning unit was leaking and dripped so much it brought down the tiles. Luckily nobody was underneath and the nearby computer was also spared.
These ants, probably black garden ants (Lasius niger), obviously decided that the time was right to take to the air. We have a nest just outside the back door. There was a huge amount of activity around the nest with winged ants emerging from three or four separate holes. The garden was full of them as they took off and headed upwards. Within about an hour, everything was calm again and all traces of the frantic launches had disappeared.
There's a piece on the BBC website about why ants suddenly decide to reach for the skies ...Flying ants.
At least this year it was outside - one memorable day we came back to find them clinging to the back door having emerged in kitchen!