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“Electric” ants could have homeowners blowing a fuse this summer.
Asian Super Ants arrived here in 2009 after being accidentally imported in pot plants.
The pests are attracted to the electricity network and have caused both blackouts and blazes.
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Their interconnected nests can stretch for miles, sometimes covering up to 50 acres in their native Uzbekistan.
Now boffins are worried they could spread across the UK after finding proof the queen ants can fly.
Until one was found in a spider’s web, they had thought they spread slowly by marching to new sites.
Now a report by The University of York has warned that the whole of Great Britain is “climatically suitable” for electric ants.
It is estimated that the ants spread around 13-miles-a-year ‘in all directions’ from an established colony, although the report says it could ‘reach 30m’.
It added: “The whole of Great Britain is thought to be currently climatically suitable for Lasius neglectus, with the potential range increasing under climate change forecasts.
“Lasius neglectus forms supercolonies that can each contain multiple queens.”
Paul Bates, boss of Cleankill Pest Control, said: “Electric ants can be very disruptive.
“Colonies gather around cables or junction boxes and can cause them to short out – this can result in blackouts and, in the worst cases, fires.”
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