‘Hairy Crazy Ants’ Invade Florida, Texas, Mississippi and Louisiana [VIDEO]
If ants creep you out, this particular breed will truly give you nightmares.
Dubbed "hairy crazy ants," they move at warp speed and little deters them. In fact, if one is killed, it releases a chemical cue for the others to attack the threat -- making standard pesticides nearly useless.
"The other ants rush in. Before long, you have a ball of ants," said Roger Gold, an entomology professor at Texas A&M.
They've already driven one Mississippi resident out of his home, and while that infestation is rare, they've invaded houses, industrial complexes, and urban and rural areas in Florida, Texas, Mississippi and Louisiana, even shorting out electrical equipment along the way.
One particular computer system that controls pipeline valves in Texas shorted out twice in about a month, but exterminator Tom Rasberry says treatments there have helped. "If that shuts down, they could literally shut down an entire chemical plant that costs millions of dollars," he said.
The ants, which are probably native to South America, eat just about anything and travel in cargo containers, hay bales, potted plants, motorcycles and moving vans.
And while they do have one upside -- they wipe out fire ant colonies -- Joe MacGown, curator of the ant, mosquito and scarab collections at the Mississippi State Entomological Museum at Mississippi State University, said, "I prefer fire ants to these. I can avoid a fire ant colony."
Watch MacGown's video of the insects below.