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To learn more about the different types of ants
found in and around your home or business,
please scroll down.
Ants are the number #1 pest problem in homes today.
Although for the most part, only Carpenter Ants can destroy
our houses. However, the massive number and locations where these other ants are seen make these nuisance ants
a major problem.
The main reason it is difficult to treat these other species of ants is "identification"
or the lack there of. Every specie of ants has different feeding habits. Not knowing which ant you are dealing
with, renders it impossible for anyone to determine the proper treatment. Some ants prefer sweets, some prefer
protein. Some like solid foods while others like liquids. The time of the season also is a key factor since at
certain times, some species change the habits. Therefore, it is imperative that when dealing with ants, "you
get a sample".
Centrals' Urban Entomologist will identify your sample to insure that you receive
the proper treatment for you particular ant problem.
The following are some basic features of the most common ants
that we have encountered in our area.
|Click this link to visit our Carpenter Ants page
Contrary to what most people believe, Carpenter Ants "do not"eat
wood! They carve smooth galleries inside wood for their nests. Their damage can be even more destructive than
termites since they can be attacking your house from many levels at the same time. Whereas termites must live in the
soil. This keeps their damage limited the lower portions of the home.
Odorous House Ants
The pungent "rotten-coconut-like"odor
given off when this ant is crushed, Colonies of these ants can range from several hundred to over a hundred
thousand. Inside, these ants usually construct their nests in wall voids especially around hot water pipes and heaters,
in crevices around sinks, cupboards, etc. These ants prefer sweets, but also eat food with high protein content and
grease such as meats and cheese. Locating their nest is crucial to controlling these ants.
Acrobat Ants are light brown to black
in color. They are approximately 1/8 in in size and can be easily recognized by their destinct shaped abdomen which
is heart shaped when viewed from above. They prefer wood softened by decay, fungi or Styrofoam insulation, but
they may enlarge cavities in wood made by other insects. They will occasionally strip the insulation from electrical
or telephone wires which can cause short circuits. When disturbed, workers are quite aggressive and quick to bite and give off a repulsive odor. Inspection is the key to successful control.
This ant gets it's name
from commonly locating it's nest in or under cracks in sidewalks and driveways and piling dirt removed from the nest in
a mound on top of the pavement. These small brown to black ants can be distinguished by grooved markings on their head
and thorax. Inside, pavement ants will nest in walls, in insulation, and under floors. The most likely place is
in ground level masonry walls of the foundation and especially near some heat source. They often follow pipes which
come through slabs for access to upper floors of buildings. Location of the nest and its treatment with residual is
ideal. Try following the ants back from the food source. Baiting may be necessary.
These ants get their name from their habit of nesting near or even in the nest of
other ants, which they rob of food and brood (larvae and pupae). These ants are pale yellow to dark brown and closely
resemble Pharaoh ants. The main difference is the segments and club on the antennae. These ants have been found
feeding on dead rats and mice and, therefore, they might possibly carry disease-inducing organisms to human food. Inside,
these ants nest in small crevices and in woodwork and masonry. They prefer proteins but will readily feed on sweets.
Location is crucial in treating these ants. Baiting may be necessary.
Pharaoh Ants have been strongly implicated in the spread of
various disease pathogens. They are very small (approx. 1/16 inch) with a pale, yellowish body. The
colonies tend to be large with workers numbering in the thousands to hundred-thousands. Pharaoh Ants are common problems
in commercial food handling establishments such as hotels, grocery stores, hospitals and in apartment complexes. They
are of particular importance in hospitals where they will enter wounds, enter in-use IV bottles, seek moisture from sleeping
infants, etc. They commonly use electrical and telephone wires as a highway system to travel through walls and between
floors. They have a wide preference in food, ranging from syrups to fruits, pies, meats and dead insects. Be cautioned
that typical use of liquid pesticides actually make the situation worse by causing the colony to fracture/bud in to several
colonies. Baiting is usually the only method of effective control. If the Pharaoh Ant infestation is in a multifamily
building, the only way such an infestation can be eliminated is to treat the entire building.
Little Black Ant
The little black ant, not surprisingly, is a very small,
black ant about 1/16 inch. It is closely related to the Pharaoh ant and look like it except for its black coloration.
This ant is common in wooded areas and can be a frequent invader of homes and other buildings. The colonies of little
black ants are small and contain many queens which are considerably larger than the workers. Inside buildings, little
black ant colonies are found in wall voids,cabinet voids, under edges of carpets and in the voids of masonry, such as brick
or stone veneer on the outside of the structure. Most infestations originate from the outside. Indoors, trails
occur along baseboards and under the edge of carpets. The natural food of little black ants is the honeydew. Indoors
the little black ants feed on sweets, meats, grease, bread, oils, cornmeal and fruit juices. Management of little black
ants is best accomplished by locating and eliminating the colonies found in or around the structure. A thorough inspection
must be made inside and outside. If the colony cannot be located, a bait insecticide can be effective.
This ant's name comes
from the workers habit of running haphazardly about a room/building in search for food. This small (1/16 - 1/8 inch)
dark brown to black ant has a very distinguishing feature; it's antenna and legs are very long in comparison to the body
size. Inside, these ants usually nest underneath floors and in wall voids, especially near hot water pipes and heaters.
The workers visit food sources following regular trails, foraging up to 100 feet or more. The preferred foods are insects
and sweets, but they will feed on almost any household food. Location of the nest is crucial to gaining control of the
crazy ant infestation. Outside barrier treatments are effective, as is baiting.
For a FREE Inspection
with your FREE gift
Contact Central Exterminating
all of Middlesex, Monmouth, Somerset, Union Counties
|Be sure to save us a sample for identifying your pest!
44 West Ferris St.
East Brunswick, NJ
Members of New Jersey and National
Pest Management Associations
License - #90464A