July 15 (UPI) -- Fire ants in Louisiana were caught on camera saving themselves from Tropical Storm Barry's floodwaters by banding together to form a raft.
Jonathan Petralama, a weather reporter for Accuweather.com, was monitoring floodwaters from an overtopped levee in Plaquemines Parish when he captured video of "fire ant balls" floating in the water.
"One of my biggest worry ever covering flooding in the south is this...fire ant balls ready to crawl into my boots," he tweeted.
Researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology said in a 2013 study that fire ants use their jaws, small claws and adhesive pads on their legs to form into floating structures.
The researchers said the "ant rafts" are strong enough to withstand waves and are able to break apart and re-link in different formations.