The natural nesting site for carpenter ants is in trees, but they will come into our homes as well. Carpenter ants are more active in late fall and early spring, but they can be a nuisance at any time of the year. Carpenter ants are larger ants. The most common ones you’ll find are ¼-3/8 inch-long with a black abdomen and reddish-brown head and thorax. They may be totally black in winged form. Queens are slightly bigger than workers, with workers varying in size. These ants also have a pinched waist and antennae that are elbowed.
Carpenter Ant Damage
Carpenter ants do not eat wood but will hollow out sections of wood to create “galleries” that they will move through. This makes them less destructive than termites, but they can cause minor damage to isolated pieces of wood. They prefer wood that is dead and damp and can easily infest wooden infrastructure. When left untreated carpenter ant infestations can become very severe. They will even build additional nests causing more damage. Because they are classified as wood-destroying insects, they can be reported on real estate transactions and can have an impact on the resale value of a home.
Signs of Carpenter Ants in House
There are tell-tale signs to alert you that you’re dealing with carpenter ants. The inner walls and wood that is already damaged are prime targets. Remember that carpenter ants don’t eat the wood, but you will notice small piles of wood shavings in areas that are infested with carpenter ants. It looks like sawdust and is also called frass. If you find frass in your home, you most likely have carpenter ants. Another indication you have carpenter ants is if you can hear them. Tap the wall where you suspect a nest may be located. The tapping will disturb them, and you might hear a faint, rustling sound. Walls near door or window frames are favored by carpenter ants along with walls that house plumbing like kitchens or bathrooms. The easiest way to realize you have a problem is to spot worker ants. This will also make it easier to locate the nest, but it’s not always a sure bet. You might just have found some of them looking for food and water. Carpenter ants are more active when it’s dark so use a flashlight in the morning or evening to find them and try to find the nest. All ants will travel from far to look for food, this means it may take you some time to track them back to their nest. An ant in your kitchen could have come from the attic or farther. Positive identification is important when it comes to ants. This is the best way to get rid of them as quickly as possible otherwise you’ll be spending money on baits and insecticides that aren’t effective.
Ant Infestation Control
Just like any other household pest, carpenter ants can make a homeowner crazy. It’s bad enough to find them trailing through your kitchen, the last thing you need is a nest in your home. Carpenter ants need to be dealt with as quickly as possible. Contact Rentokil today to begin an effective, customized treatment plan!
Most Carpenter Ant Infestations Happen in Spring & Late Fall; How to Get Rid of Ants in Smithfield, UT in Salt Lake County and Northern Utah
Serving Northern Utah and Southern Idaho since 1999