Types of Ant That Can Invade Your Home
June 30, 2014
Meet The Odorous House Ant
If you want to know how Odorous House Ants earned their unfortunate name, simply crush a few and your nose will provide the answer. This type of ant comes in various shades of brown, with worker ants of this type reaching approximately one-tenth of an inch in length. The odorous ant is particularly fond of sweets, especially honeydew melon. They also will dine on other insects. If it cannot satisfy its sweet tooth outdoors, the Odorous House Ant will move indoors in search of sweets, meats, and other foods.
Odorous House Ants will nest indoors or outdoors, depending on where an opportunity presents itself. Odorous House Ants can nest indoors beneath floors, near heaters, behind water pipes, under carpets, in wall crevices, and even behind paneling. Odorous House Ants like to build shallow nests in logs, mulch, and debris, under rocks, and beneath the soil. Odorous House Ant infestations are most often detected by observing foraging worker ants, although the winged swarmers are also occasionally discovered.
Meet the Pavement Ant
In the Northeast, one of the most common house-infesting ants is the pavement ant. Pavement ant colonies can be found under building slabs, large rocks, or sidewalks. They enter buildings and houses through interior slabs and cracks in the foundation. The pavement worker ant is dark brown to black in color and approximately .1 inch in length. Pavement ants will eat a variety of foods: fruits, sugars, grease, and even dead insects. Any morsel of food which was dropped would most likely be consumed by pavement ants.
There are multiple queens and numerous workers in a typical colony of pavement ants. A queen pavement ant will lay eggs to establish a new colony. The eggs are tended to by worker pavement ants until they hatch and become adults. Eggs and juveniles are moved around to protect them from temperature and moisture fluctuations.
It can be difficult to locate the nests of pavement ants. If you believe you have a pavement ant infestation, contact a pest control expert to evaluate the area in question.
Meet the Thief Ant
Thief ants are light brown to yellow in color and are extremely small, with the worker ant never longer than one-sixteenth of an inch. Thief ants have a sundry diet, from dead insects and rodents to proteins, grease, and greasy foods, proteins such as nuts and meats, dead insects, and dead rodents. They also will steal food and even ant larva from the nests of other ants. Worker thief ants can be a problem in the kitchen due to their ability to enter small openings in food packaging. Their tendency to eat dead rodents occasionally leads to the transfer of dangerous pathogens to human food.
Thief ants create trails along the baseboards of houses, within cabinets, and in walls. They will also use electrical wires to travel from room to room. For that reason, you can often find thief ants in electrical outlets. While often smaller than the colonies of other species, thief ant colonies can contain several thousand workers and multiple queens.
Thief ants mate from June to September, and they will reproduce both indoors and outdoors in the summer. Trails from the food sources to the thief ant nests are visible signs of an infestation. In addition to nesting in soil and rotting wood, they may also nest in small spaces indoors, including behind baseboards, in cabinet voids, in wall crevices, and under countertops. Thief ants hide their nests well and thus are frequently difficult to locate. If you suspect a thief ant infestation, contact a pest control expert to verify your infestation and recommend appropriate steps for removal.
For all your ant problems, around your home, ants around the house, or in the kitchen, Alliance Pest Services is ready to solve all your ant infestations today. Learn more about our home and commercial pest control services today!