A swarm of flying insects hits Cardiff as Taylor Swift fans start arriving

The swarm spotted near Cardiff Castle
-Credit: (Image: WalesOnline/ Rob Browne)

The sun has finally come out in Cardiff but it has brought a swarm of flying insects with it. Just as a flood of Taylor Swift fans from across the world arrive in the city centre.

The swarm were filmed outside Cardiff Castle on Monday, June 17, but we are not sure what types of insect they are.

Every summer the moment comes when we are absolutely swarmed by the large winged ants in a phenomenon dubbed Flying Ant Day - but it is a little too early for that.. Many parts of the UK were bombarded by them, but it is usually not until July.

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But contrary to its name, this event happens over several weeks rather than a single day. There are normally swarms when there is a mixture of wet, humid and warm weather. Although to many it might seem like no more than a nuisance, there is a good reason behind Flying Ant Day.

It's all about survival and happens as the queens look for a mate and set up new colonies. Both male and female ants travel away from their nest to find other colonies and settle down in suitable conditions to begin their own.

According to the Natural History Museum, they travel in large groups to keep themselves safe - as well as to mingle with other ants. The website states: "One reason is that this gives them protection from predators. There really is safety in numbers.

"Another reason to swarm is to increase the chance of reproduction - with larger numbers of their species around the ants won't have far to look for a mate. During this brief, once-in-a-lifetime mating period, a queen usually mates with several males."

Once ants have mated, the role of the males is over, the website states. The mated queens then quickly chew off their own wings and begin looking for a suitable site in which to nest and set up a new colony.

Flying ants aren't harmful to humans. According to the RSB, the best thing is to leave them alone if they appear in your garden because they will usually fly off within a few hours. However, flying ants are actually known for biting people. The NHS website says bites and stings are "generally harmless, although you'll probably feel a nip".

If you know more about the ants, get in touch and let us know. The swarm was spotted as thousands of Taylor Swift fans arrive in the city ahead of her Eras Tour gig at the Principality Stadium on Tuesday, June 18.

Rachel Doyle, from New York City was delighted to visit the city. She said: "My friend and I saw Taylor once in New York City and we had so much fun that we wanted to see her again, so we signed up for lots of presale codes in Europe to get more tickets, and Cardiff was the one we managed to get.

“The city has a very specific charm and is very unlike other European cities that I’ve seen. It’s cute, and I like how small it is.”