New rule for ants: If it's big enough to cast a shadow, keep away!
As I was getting into my car on Wednesday evening, I noticed this creature too close to my sandaled foot for comfort. I moved my foot and grabbed my camera from the car and started a pursuit. She apparently didn't want any part of the paparazzi as she immediately started a rapid retreat across the road. These photos aren't very good because she was moving quickly and I was trying to use the macro setting while keeping my bare toes away from her! Once she crossed the road, she quickly lost herself in the grass of a vacant lot. Saturday I remembered to ask my resident bug expert what I'd seen and was told that it was a"Cow Killer Ant" (also called Velvet Ant) and that it was a good thing I didn't let it sting me. A quick Google this morning turned up the following at "whatsthatbug.com":
This is a Velvet Ant, a flightless female wasp that is commonly called a Cow Killer, and she stings like the dickens. Eric Eaton add: "Velvet ants can 'squeak' by rapidly rubbing their abdominal segments against one another, which might account for the "hissing" sound the submitter mentioned. Between the warning colors and the noise, you'd be foolish to pick one up"
Creep on over to Misty Dawn's to see more Camera Critters!
Sunday, August 10, 2008
Posted by Lake Lady at 7:56 AM