Flying ant day: Swarms spotted swarm across the country, from Sheffield to London

The ants come out in the summer to mate

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The Independent Online

The warm weather and balmy evenings have caused flying ants to swarm across the country.

The creatures have been spotted in towns and cities including London, Swadlincote, Cambridge, Bedford, Chessington, Poole, Sheffield, Bristol and Cardiff.

Flying ants are the sexually mature queens and males of the common black ant who have left their respective nests to swarm and find mates.

The winged insects gather in the summer because the warm air and long nights make perfect conditions in which to fly and dig new nests.

It was once believed that ants swarmed simultaneously over a 24-hour period each year. However, a recent study by the Royal Society of Biology showed that flying ant days can stretch over a month. The society has urged people who spot flying ants to contact them, so they can add to their data.

Twitter was awash with people tweeting at the Royal Society, venting their confusing at the sheer number of flying ants in their area, or just taking the opportunity to post jokes.