[leps-talk] Cut Off, LA - 4/24/02

Jim Taylor drivingiron at earthlink.net
Tue Apr 30 05:54:41 EDT 2002

Anne, Leroy, et. al.

I'm sure you know fire ants sting, not bite. How God got a whole jigger of
formic acid in a critter about a quarter of an inch long I'll never
understand. Love the name: Solenopsis invicta - just sounds evil. A year or
so ago I dropped my golf towel on a nest I didn't see, hit the shot, and
wiped my face on the towel. Not one sting.

Jim Taylor
----- Original Message -----
From: "Anne Kilmer" <viceroy at gate.net>
To: <Leptraps at aol.com>
Cc: <legitintellexit at earthlink.net>; <MWalker at gensym.com>;
<agrkovich at tmpeng.com>; <leps-l at lists.yale.edu>;
<TILS-leps-talk at yahoogroups.com>
Sent: Tuesday, April 30, 2002 12:47 AM
Subject: Re: [leps-talk] Cut Off, LA - 4/24/02

Leptraps at aol.com wrote:

> Back in the early 1980s, a fine fellow by the name of Vince Lucas joined
on a
> late November trip to south Florida. During a stop at the I.F.A.S. Station
> Homestead, Vince and I were working the Loquat trees for Chlorostrymon
> Maesites and C. simaethis when Vince stopped to paper his catch. He sat on
> fire ant mound. Fire ants can be sexy buggers!
> As a result, Vince still holds the world record for removing ones pants,
> is even faster than the great Bill Clinton!
> Cheers,
> Leroy C. Koehn
> 202 Redding Road
> Georgetown, Kentucky
> USA          40324-2622
> Tele.: 502-570-9123
> Cell: 502-803-5422
> E-mail: Leptraps at aol.com
> "Let's get among them"

Leroy, some of these folks have not encountered fire ants. I suspect
they will meet some, when they go down to the Keys with you to check out
the Blues.
So ... what fire ants do is very quietly tiptoe up your legs, inside
your trousers ... hundreds of them, tiptoe, tiptoe. Then somebody yells
"Fire!!!!" and they all bite at once.
And they keep biting, and some of them are on your shoes, and many of
them are in places some of us don't have, and the pain is exquisite, and
it will keep on hurting for weeks and weeks.
I am told that the lesions heal up faster if you don't scratch those
little white blisters. I wouldn't know.

I haven't encountered fire ants in many years, since they moved out of
my yard when the white-footed ants, Technomyrmex albipes, moved in.
Those ants tend insects, and I'd sure like to know whether they tend
blue butterflies. If they do, we may have a solution to the
bethunebakeri/ant problem.
"Let's get among them" indeed.

Anne Kilmer

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