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While it does have the word carpenter in its name, don’t expect it to show up with a hammer and nails. It will, however, show up ready to go to work on your wooden structures. Unfortunately, it will be looking to cause damage rather than make repairs. All this being said, the carpenter ant is without a doubt one of the more unique species of the ant. And it all starts with their looks.
What Do Carpenter Ants Look Like?
With a size range of 1/4 inch to ¾ inches, the carpenter ant is one of the largest ant species. Depending on the colony species, these creepy crawlers can range anywhere from black to orange, yellow, brown, red, and a mixture of the colors mentioned. What’s even more interesting is that some of these ants can have wings.
These would be the carpenter ant swarmers and they will be the ones found hovering around your doors and windows, likely looking for a wooden structure they can burrow into and start a new colony. If you spot one of these flying nuisances it is certainly time to get our office on the phone
Despite their name, carpenter ants typically build their initial colonies underground and about 300 feet away from the home. When this colony reaches maximum potential size, they will send out swarmers to seek space in wooden structures for new colonies. This means you are about to have even more problems on your hands.
Learning To Identify Carpenter Ant Damage
Just for what little you’ve read thus far; you can likely see the potential damage the carpenter ant poses. As a result, you’ll want to learn to spot and identify an infestation as early as possible. The earlier you catch the infestation, the less costly and easier it’ll be to eliminate. Here are some things you’ll want to keep an eye on.
Clean, hollowed-out wood – While termites and carpenter ants both like wood, they go about consuming and utilizing it differently. Ants like to keep the wood polished and cleaned, while termites oftentimes like to bring dirt into the hollowed-out tunnels.
Wood Shavings – Carpenter ants like to tunnel into wooden structures. This is a process that creates wood shavings. Interestingly enough, the ants do not eat these excess shavings. Therefore, you’ll oftentimes find them piled up in the corner or near where the work took place.
Noises – Tunneling through wood takes immense work. Believe it or not, if you are quiet and diligent enough, you can hear the process. It won’t be anything like a drill drilling into wood, but you might catch slight crunching noises.
Damaged Food Containers – Carpenter ants can thrive inside human habitats, surviving on nonperishable food and household waste. This is one of the largest ant species, with powerful mandibles that can gnaw through manufacturing paperboard and plastic.
Carpenter Ant Mentality
Carpenter ants are more attracted to moist softwoods. During the spring and summer months, you might catch these creepy crawlers emerging from the vents, windows, and baseboards of the home. They are also drawn to damp areas, as it’ll make burrowing into the wood in the areas much less of a task. If you keep a close eye on these areas and the above-mentioned symptoms, you might be able to catch a carpenter ant infestation before it grows too large.
Either way, we are here for you. Whether you suspect your home has been invaded or you have a confirmation, you can give our office a call.