Por isso, odio as formigas! / This is why I despise fire ants!

Fire ant attacks and my swollen hand, © Wren M. Allen

My poor hand! Fire ants are no joke in Houston!

Last Monday (09/13), I was weeding the front easement space in preparation for a big family visit. Just as I was thinking, “Gosh, I guess the neighbor’s poisoning of his side of the space must have killed all the fire……ANTS!”, between 15 and 20 of the little red demons stung me simultaneously. The fact they sting as one, using the hive mind, makes it even worse. This is definitely one of the major disadvantages of living in Houston!

This photo is from the next day, when the swelling and allergic reaction were at their worst. I could barely pinch thumb and forefinger together at that point. Fortunately, the situation improved rapidly after that, and now, I just have a bunch of ugly, weeping, itchy scabs.

My Brazilian botanical painting friends wondered why I was so cowardly about ants when we went to the Amazon. Bom, é por isso ‘stou gritando com medo dos bichinhos!

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