Carpenter ants are so named for their skill at constructing their homes from wood. These large ants are excavators, not wood feeders. Still, an established colony can do structural damage to your home if left unchecked, so it’s a good idea to learn to recognize carpenter ants when you see them. Carpenter ants belong to the genus Camponotus. Click here to see Carpenter Ant Damage
Odorous House Ants
Odorous house ants may develop huge colonies containing thousands of workers and numerous queens. This species may be difficult to control. The keys to control are finding the colonies and sub colonies and treating them directly. This species is common in California north to Washington and is the most common pest ant in the mid-west states. These ants nest outdoors under items on the ground, within landscape, mulch, under ground cover, in potted plants, and within piles of items. Nest may readily be stabilized inside homes in walls, beneath carpeting, and in other suitable voids or spaces.
When the pavement ants’ colony is located outdoors, it can be easily found by the mound of soil over top the nest. This ant builds its colony beneath pavement, rocks, driveways, sidewalks, and logs. As it tunnels into the soil to excavate its colony, it pushes the soil debris up through the top of its nest, forming visible mounds of sandy-looking soil. These mounds are often seen between cracks of pavement, beneath which the ants have built their nest, thus the common name of “pavement” ant. A typical colony will have 3,000 to 5,000 ants, but colonies have been known to grow as large as 30,000 ants at a single site. This is due, in part, to this ant’s ability to have multiple queens in a single colony, whereas most ant species have only one queen per colony.
Very small; light yellow to red, with black markings on abdomen; about one-sixteenth inch long. Depends on artificial heating in human dwellings to survive; infestations commonly occur in food service areas; will nest in any well-protected and hidden areas throughout a structure; can nest outdoors in lawns or gardens.