Ant Eaters

With temperatures on the rise in this morning’s bright sunshine, a nuptial flight of ants (Formicidae) streamed from a nest alongside the headquarters pond.  They marched en masse from their underground shelter to climb a dead tree and fly away in an ascending cloud.

A nuptial flight of ants taking to the wing.
A nuptial flight of ants taking to the wing at the headquarters pond.

As the swarm climbed skyward, it immediately attracted the attention of some recently-arrived migratory birds…

Barn Swallows and Chimney Swifts Attack an Ant Swarm
Barn Swallows and Chimney Swifts seized the opportunity to devour an easy meal…hundreds of flying ants.  Their timing was perfect.  The first Barn swallows of the season arrived here just two days ago, the first appearance of the swifts was concurrent with this morning’s ant swarm.
Barn Swallow and Chimney Swifts
Our squadron of predators quickly devoured the airborne insects.  The entire event was concluded in just five minutes. 

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