Flying ants: Weather radar mistakes flying ant SWARMS for rain as insects descend on UK


Parts of southern and eastern England were inundated with flying ants over the weekend, with Sunday deemed Flying Ant Day due to the sheer number of sightings. Every year flyings ant swarms are caused by the weather reaching optimum temperatures, which prompts flying ants to leave their nests in search of a mate from another ant colony.

On Monday the talk on morning TV was still very much centred on the phenomena of Flying Ant Day yesterday.

Good Morning Britain meteorologist Laura Tobin explained this morning how millions of flying ants were picked up on the weather radar.

Ms Tobin explained how weather radars send signals out, and when it hits a raindrop it indicates there is rainfall in the affected area.

However, on Sunday, the radar signals hit a flurry of flying ants in different regions across the UK, mistaking the ants for rainfall.

READ MORE: Flying Ant Day: What is Flying Ant Day?

Good Morning Britain tweeted: “Did you see millions of flying ants yesterday?

“There were so many insects in the sky, the weather radars could even pick up their presence, mistaking them for raindrops.”

BBC meteorologist Matt Taylor also showed viewers on Monday a similar picture of flying ants also cropping up on the weather radar.

Mr Taylor explained how flying ants tend to appear every year at some point in July or August.

However, a male ant dies as soon as it has successfully mated, after which the female ant will then chew off her own wings before nesting.

While flying ants can be irritating when they descend in their masses, the creatures do not pose much danger to people in the UK.

The ants are actually good for the environment, helping to aerate soil and provide food resources for birds such as seagulls.

But for those hoping for a nice picnic or barbecue this week, the good news is flying ants will start to disappear within the next few days.


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