Ants are found nearly everywhere in the world, where some species are specific to different areas, most people know an ant when they see one. Though they have many similarities in appearance and habits, the various species also have distinct differences as well. Today, we at Rentokil would like to relate the fundamentals of pavement ants that are fairly common to Northern Utah and Southern Idaho.
Pavement Ant Identification
Pavement ants vary in color from light brown to black and their appendages are generally lighter than the rest of the body. They feature parallel lines on the head that lead to the thorax. Pavement ants can reach up to 1/8” long and their antennae are 12-segmented with a 3-segmented club. Generally, pavement ants are more of a nuisance, and are typically docile but will sting if they are provoked. These ants prefer to avoid confrontation and will typically choose flight as opposed to fighting. Pavement ants are omnivorous, though they prefer the sweets and meats as previously mentioned, they will eat nearly anything. They will feast on living or dead insects, grease, and the honeydew from aphids.
Where Do Pavement Ants Live?
Ideal habitats for pavement ants include underneath sidewalks, patios, and driveways. Since they prefer such places, they easily make their way into homes and businesses, typically in search of food; favoring sweets, proteins, and dead insects. Pavement ants often find entry through cracks in foundations, basement floors, and walls as well as the concrete slabs where they forage the crumbs, trash, and open containers of food. With a convenient food source, they are encouraged to stay close by. Additionally, pavement ants will also feed on pet food they can find either outside or inside. These ants will also nest under logs, boards, bricks, patio blocks, and stones. In close proximity to buildings, pavement ants have been found nesting in mulching materials as well. If they opt to stay indoors, they are known to nest within the wall’s insulation and under floors. Pavement ants can be a challenge when it comes to pinpointing their nest if you suspect pavement ants, professional expertise is recommended for effective removal. Many times, you can see piled up dirt in a mound above the pavement where they are nesting outside, and inside people frequently see them foraging for food.
Swarming Pavement Ant Colonies
Pavement ant colonies consist of multiple queens and thousands of workers. A new colony is established when the queen lays her eggs. Worker ants will tend to the queen’s brood until they have developed into adulthood. Broods are transferred from location to location, during development, to protect them from fluctuations in moisture and temperature. Pavement ants are hatched from the eggs as larval, evolve into pupal stages until they become mature adults, undergoing complete metamorphosis. Frequently during June and July, the swarmers, which are the winged males and females, are the reproducers will mate. The females will search for new nesting areas and become the queen of a new colony after mating.
How to Get Rid of Swarming Pavement Ants in Sidewalk Cracks, Driveway Pavers & More in Salt Lake County and Northern Utah
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