Ants 101: Three Common Types of Ants Setting Up Shop Inside the Home

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The unfortunate thing about finding a single ant in your kitchen, bathroom, or bedroom is knowing that where there is one, there are many sure to follow. As any colonies grow, their food intake grows as well, and lone ant scouts are sent to find new sources of food. If a scout finds a potential food source, it will take a piece of it back to the colony and leave behind a chemical trail for other ants to follow.

Ants 101: Three Common Types of Ants Setting Up Shop Inside the Home

Ants are highly social creatures, and one single ant, not particularly menacing on its own, can spur an infestation that can become overwhelming. Ants, in addition to carrying bacteria on their bodies that can be transferred over to your food and surfaces, often bite and sting their perceived threats. Ant attacks aren’t only painful; they can induce an allergic reaction in some people.

It’s no wonder why these insects are always unwanted houseguests. The specific ant species you encounter indoors largely depends on where you live, but here are three kinds of ants often found in homes.

  1. Carpenter Ants. On the larger side of ants, Carpenter ants can be a variety of colors including black, red and black, reddish-orange, or even yellow. In the wild, carpenter ants usually nest in decaying wood, such as tree stumps or fallen logs. However, these pests can easily be lured inside your living space. Areas in your home, like old studs, that have moist and or decaying wood are a prime target for these ants. Carpenter ants, unlike termites, don’t actually eat the wood they chew on, but they can cause structural damage to a home in their quest to find a new spot for their colony to inhabit.
  2. Crazy Ants. Ants are known to be orderly and eager to follow a straight line, but as their name implies, the behavior of crazy ants tends to be very fast and erratic. Crazy ants are usually reddish-brown and can be distinguished from other ants by their long legs and antennae. Like many ants, crazy ants are extremely attracted to sweet and protein-rich foods.
  3. Fire Ants. Fire ants can be reddish-brown or almost black and are characterized by their two-segmented “waist” between their thorax and abdomen. Up close, you might also notice bristles of fine hair on their head, abdomen, and legs. Fire ants have a fearsome reputation due to a willingness to defend themselves against a potential threat. Fire ant are venomous, and their stings and bites often result in painful and itchy welts.

If you’ve encountered any of these ants, or you suspect that another kind of ant is settling into your home, don’t hesitate to contact us today to learn more about our extermination expertise.