Carpenter Ants

Identifying carpenter ants (Camponotus spp.) is important, as these ants can cause structural damage to wood and require specific treatment if they infest your home. Here are the key characteristics and features to help you identify carpenter ants:

  • Size:
    • Carpenter ants are among the largest ant species, with workers ranging from about 6 to 13 millimeters (1/4 to 1/2 inch) in length.
    • Queens can be even larger, often exceeding 15 millimeters (1/2 inch) in length.
  • Coloration:
    • The most common carpenter ant species are black, but they can also be dark brown or reddish-brown.
    • Some carpenter ant species have a combination of black and reddish-brown colors.
  • Body Segmentation:
    • Carpenter ants have a distinct three-part body: head, thorax, and abdomen.
    • Their thorax is evenly rounded and lacks spines.
    • The abdomen is smoothly rounded and evenly segmented, with no constrictions between segments.
  • Antennae:
    • Carpenter ants have long, elbowed antennae with 12 segments.
    • The antennal club (the tip of the antenna) typically has three segments.
  • Head Shape:
    • The head of a carpenter ant is typically heart-shaped or oval, with a noticeable constriction (narrowing) at the neck, just behind the head.
  • Behavior:
    • Carpenter ants are primarily wood-destroying insects. They tunnel through wood to create nests, which can weaken structural elements.
    • They are usually most active during the evening and night, making it easier to spot them after dark.
    • Carpenter ants do not consume wood; instead, they excavate it to build galleries for nesting.
  • Nesting Sites:
    • Carpenter ants prefer to nest in moist, decaying wood. However, they can also infest dry, sound wood, especially if it’s located near a moisture source.
    • Common nesting locations include tree stumps, rotting logs, wooden structures, wall voids, and even foam insulation.
  • Foraging:
    • Carpenter ants forage for food both indoors and outdoors.
    • They are omnivorous, feeding on a variety of foods, including insects, nectar, honeydew, and other sweet substances.
    • You may notice trails of foraging worker ants in your home, particularly in the kitchen or near food sources.

If you suspect a carpenter ant infestation in or around your property, it’s crucial to address it promptly to prevent structural damage. Contact a pest control professional for proper identification and to develop an effective eradication and prevention plan, which may include locating and treating the nest(s) and eliminating moisture sources that attract them.

All Pest Identification

Flying Insects

We Remove Pests In St. Augustine: