Carpenter Ant Problem?
You are probably reading this because you believe to have a carpenter
ant problem. Most of our customers identify their problem correctly by
themselves. However, sometimes it is a different pest that creates the
problem. For example, many different holes in a log house construction
are a problem usually caused by carpenter bees and require a different
Identifying Carpenter Ants
Carpenter Ants have a narrow waist like wasps and an elbow bend in the
middle of their antennae. Their colour is often black, sometimes mixed
with red or all red. They look like regular ants, just bigger. They can
range in size from ¼ inch to ½ inch for workers and up to
1 inch for queens and males. During mating, which takes place during the
hot summer month, the queen and males have two wings. If your critters
do not have a narrow waist and no elbow bend in their antennae they are
not ants but could be termites. You will want to take action quickly.
of Carpenter Ant Infestation
- You see large ants (up to ½ inch) in your home in consistently
- You hear a crackling, chewing noise from behind the walls, most likely
in the middle of the night. That noise is not that loud. If it is and
you are camping, you'd probably wish it were just ants, but it is more
likely to be a bear.
- You see large (1 inch) ants with wings flying around in your house.
Those are young ant queens or males trying to establish a colony.
- You have ants inside your home even so it's cold outside and vegetation
and critters are hibernating outdoors.
- You see little piles of sawdust ('frass') in your home; these are
remnants from the excavation activities of the ant, as they do not eat
- Many different holes in a wood beam could be caused by carpenter bees
or powder post beetles and require a different
Mold and Carpenter Ants - What you need to know
Did you know that many homes with carpenter ants also have a
mold problem? Because the ants find water damaged wood attractive, as
it makes their job of chewing the wood for nesting purposes easier. If
the wood stayed damp long enough for the ants to be attracted, there is
often mold growth in the building materials as well. Some molds affect
human health detrimentally, esp. the black molds. learn
|Carpenter Ants at Work
Carpenter Ants are a beneficial insect species in nature. They become a
problem when they build a nest in the house and can cause damage to a wood
structure over time. They are not as destructive as termites as they excavate
the wood for nesting purposes, but do not eat it. One indicator of a carpenter
ant presence is "frass", little mounds of small wood particles
somewhere in or around the house.
Pesticides Don't Work
Carpenter ants are difficult to eradicate with pesticides.
Only a small percentage is out foraging at any given time, they are strong
and fairly intelligent and there can be lots of them. These ants are nocturnal
and you will see more in the evening. Their activity depends a lot on
temperature, so you see many during the hot summer and less during cooler
If you hear a chewing, crackling noise in the middle of the night that
might be the ants putting on the addition to their nest. They will not
damage a house as quickly as termites, but can do substantial damage to
a wood structure over a number of years. While you do not need to panic,
you do not want to ignore them either. And probably can't. If the nest
is in the house, they will not go away by themselves, unless it's a cottage
and the structure freezes in the wintertime. In this case they usually
cannot proliferate. It's not recommended to do this with a house as water
pipes can burst and frost damage can happen. There are better ways of
dealing with ants.
A Nest Inside?
How do you know if you have a nest inside? If you see a lot of carpenter
ants inside, chances are their nest is inside, too. If you see just one
or two ants and outside it's snowing, then you have a nest, too. If you
see big ants with wings flying around in your home chances are that they
came from a nest inside the house. However, if you see just a few ants
in your home during the summer, they might be just looking around for
Carpenter Ants need moisture to develop their young in a nest. There is
always some initial water damage
if carpenter ants move in. That damage can be minimal (like escaping steam
from a dishwasher over years) or more extensive (like water backing up
through the roof shingles). Watch out for mould build up if the moisture
stays trapped and the building materials can't dry out. That can be a
health danger to inhabitants. Once the ants have moved in, they will also
use dry wood for their nesting needs.
Identifying Carpenter Ants |
Signs of Carpenter Ant Infestation | Carpenter
Ants at Work
Why Pesticide Don't Work | Nocturnal
Construction | A Nest Inside? | Water
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