Texas is home to several types of carpenter ants, ranging from 1/4 to 3/8 inch in length. Carpenter ants are typically a reddish-brown color but some winged forms may be black while the worker ants are yellow to black. Their bodies are shaped like an hourglass with their waist being constricted.
Let’s look at some ways of identifying potential carpenter ants:
Carpenter ants are not as destructive as termites but can cause damage to wood. Usually in isolated areas. Their extremely powerful jaws can chew through wood to create tunnels for their nest.
They build their nests in rotted out trees or stumps or in moist wood but can also enter your home and build a nest inside the voids of a wall, window frames or even inside doors.
Queens breed different carpenter ants to perform different tasks. She has worker ants, which are all female, that build the colony while other workers search for food. They prefer sweet sugary foods but will consume human or pet food, other insects and honeydew. Not limited to these items, carpenter ants will eat anything accessible.
Queens also breed males and females just for mating. These ants, when sexually mature, have wings and when the weather is right (hot and humid) in July and August, these ants emerge from the nest to “swarm”. This is their mating process. The females are larger than the males and once mating is complete the males die within a week. The newly fertilized queen then chews off her wings and searches for a new nest to colonize. Colonies can have thousands of workers but typically only one queen who is responsible for laying eggs over her lifetime. Queens can live up to 15 years.
- Keep wood piles away from house
- Dispose of any rotting wood or trees and stumps
- Trim the trees and bushes around the perimeter of house
- Keep trash, pet and human food sources tightly sealed
- Check for leaks – carpenter ants like moist areas
- Check for small piles of wood shavings or sawdust – this is possible evidence of carpenter ants
If you are experiencing any type of ant problem, hiring a professional pest control service can help eliminate your worries. Contact us at 214-321-2847