Colony of Carpenter Ants

Carpenter ants cause more damage to homes and business in Canada than any other pest. That’s why you need to know the signs of carpenter ant activity:

 

Sawdust – Carpenter ants create sawdust, called frass, while tunneling through wood. If you see tiny piles of sawdust along baseboards or windowsills and you have not used a saw recently, you likely have carpenter ants.

 

Strange holes – As the ants excavate wood, holes or ‘window’ openings may suddenly appear in wood timbers, trim or walls. You also may notice soft spots, such as where wood appears thin and fragile.

 

Actual ants – If you see carpenter ants indoors, the ants are either from a nest nearby or they have a nest somewhere in the house. Ask all family members to report ant sightings. Children are especially observant when it comes to noticing ants and pests in general.

 

Where are carpenter ants found?

Carpenter ants commonly are found near wet, water or fungus-damaged wood.

 

Indoors, carpenter ants most often are found where water leaks occur, such as

  • under sinks and bathtubs
  • around windows and door frames
  • in crawl spaces
  • near downspout elbows (even up high at the second storey level)
  • under the roof where shingles are missing or damaged
  • near a chimney with poor flashing

 

In late spring, you also may find winged carpenter ants swarming to bright windows. This occurs during mating season (or nuptial flights) and the ants are trying to get outdoors to establish new colonies.

 

Outdoors, carpenter ants are found in wet, rotting wood, such as

  • trees and tree stumps
  • fence posts
  • landscaping timbers
  • firewood
  • buried wood and wood that touches soil
  • piles of wood, brush or leaf litter

 

You’ll also find carpenter ants foraging in landscaping plants where aphid, mealybug and scale insects are making honeydew, in garbage and recycling bins, and in garages where pet food is stored.

 

How many nests do carpenter ants have?

Carpenter ants often have more than one nest on a property. Typically, the main colony will be found outdoors, and a satellite nest will be located indoors.

 

Also read:

How to Identify Carpenter Ants

How to Get Rid of Carpenter Ants

How to use Ant Traps

How to Keep Ants Out

How to Get Rid of Ants Outside

How to Inspect for Ants

How to Follow an Ant Trail

Why Do I Have Ants?

5 Steps to Get Rid of Ants for Good

The Best DIY Ant Killers in Canada

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