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Ant ID - large furry red ant (Red-haired Velvet Ant)

There is an insect, looks like a big hairy ant, all black, with black wings, and ORANGE antennae. I have seen it both crawling on the ground and flying through the air. Looks something like a cow killer, but isn't red at all.

Your "ant" is really a kind of wasp which looks so much like an enormous ant that is is popularly known as a Velvet Ant. Velvet Ants are relatively common in the southern states. The females are wingless but in every other respect are wasps and need to be treated with all due respect, since they can really sting. You can see pictures of them on our online insect field guide.

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