Have you seen big black ants in your house? If so, you probably have carpenter ants.
Unlike most species of ants, which are often considered nuisance pests at their worst, carpenter ants can do real damage to your home. Carpenter ants excavate through the wood, creating smooth tunnels, to build their nests. Over time, this can compromise the structural soundness of your home.
How can you tell if your home has been infested with these destructive pests? Here are four signs you have carpenter ants in your home.
Sign #1: Big Black Ants
Carpenter ants don’t actually eat the wood, they just tunnel through it. Because they need to look for other food sources, you may find one or more of these quarter-inch to half-inch worker ants marching across your kitchen floor. Keep in mind: while the most common species of carpenter ants in the U.S. are black, they can vary in color; some are even red.
During spring and early summer months, you might run across winged carpenter ants searching for new nesting sites. Another wood-loving pest, the termite, is also winged. Termites typically have straight antennae, a broad waist, and wings in equal size, while the ant will have bent antennae, a slender waist, and a second pair of smaller wings.
Whether it’s a carpenter ant or a termite (or you don’t really care to inspect closely to figure it out yourself), run across them inside your house, it’s time to call in a pest expert to exterminate.
Sign #2: Piles of Sawdust
When carpenter ants excavate through wood, they kick out a sawdust-like material, known as frass. Crawl spaces, corners, and dark areas are the areas where you are most likely to run across small piles of frass.
Sign #3: Rustling Sounds
Especially in heavier infestations, you may hear faint rustling noises coming from the walls. This noise – which sounds like rustling cellophane – happens as the carpenter ants move around or chew through the wood.
Sign #4: Wood Damage
If you’ve seen frass or heard rustling sounds, you can look for damaged wood in the area where these carpenter ant infestation signs occurred. Damaged wood will have small rectangular window holes, which are the beginnings of tunnels that run deeper into the wood.
Carpenter ants can be difficult to evict from your home. If you’ve seen signs of these destructive pests, your next step is to call in a trusted pest professional.
Have you seen the signs of carpenter ants around your home? Call us at (800) 235-3093 to get rid of carpenter ants now!