Carpenter Ants: Silent Destroyers

28 November, 2013UncategorizedJames Stevenson

There are around 700 varieties of ants found in the US consisting of nine species of carpenter ants. Ants are one of the nuisance pests in this country. Carpenter ants have got their name by making their nest in wood. They are around 5/8” in size, oval in shape and vary in color from black to red. Like other ants these carpenter ants also stay in colonies established by a queen ant.

How do they infest our house?

You need to check your property from time to time to see whether it has been infested by carpenter ants. Check out for sawdust or small openings on the wooden structures and furniture. These carpenter ants usually prefer damp and moldy wood. Hence they are seen on the trees outside the house. But it is not uncommon for them to dig tunnels in sound wood.

What problems can these ants create for humans?

The carpenter ants are not disease carriers. They can bite when threatened, but their bite is not poisonous and no treatment is required.
But they are considered really problematic because of their nature of digging tunnels in the wood. They can cause severe damage to properties which can prove to be very expensive to repair. Hence they are called silent destroyers. They do not feed on the wood like termites but in the process of expanding their nests they keep digging into the structural beams thus weakening them with time.

How can they be removed from your homes?

There are several ways of getting rid of these carpenter ants from your house few of which are mentioned below;

Locate the nest – Firstly you need to trace the main colony. Usually 70% of the nests are found on the exterior structure of the house where there is a lot of moisture. Also check out for the pipes, wirings etc.

Prevention and control – Following the steps mentioned below can help you prevent the carpenter ants from entering your house;

a) Get rid of the moisture – Repair the weather-damaged and rotten wooden structures.

b) Pile the firewood properly – Firewood piles tend to invite the carpenter ants. Store them at an elevated place away from the house.

c) Trim the shrubs and trees – Proper maintenance of the trees and shrubs is very important so that they don’t touch your house because these act as a bridge for the ants.

If the nests are identified on time and removed properly, wandering ants captured, entry points chalked and all rotten woods removed then chemical treatment is not required.

Are there any pest control measures for carpenter ants?

Using pesticides is one of the last options. But it is always better to opt for the least-toxic chemicals. You can use boric powder which helps to do away with the carpenter ants and is a safe option. The best option is to call upon a licensed pest control expert who uses only safe chemicals.
Carpenter ants are basically destructive ants. The earlier they are treated the lesser are the chances of damage.

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