Pictures/sketches of (cowpea) curculios
I don't think I've ever seen one of these insects, but they should be easy to ID, given their unique characteristics -- Cowpea curculio or Chalcodermus aeneus. They are kin to weevils. They feign death and drop to the soil when disturbed. Beetles rarely fly. Adults overwinter in the soil and under leaves and other organic debris.
"....red imported fire ant[s], Solenopsis invicta Buren (Hymenoptera: Formicidae), significantly reduced the rate of successful pupation by cowpea curculio", so if there's anything to praise the fire ant for, I suppose it must be its predation on the cowpea curculio!