Carpenter Ants

Camponotus species
Pest Stats
Color: Usually red, black or a combination
Legs: 6
Shape: Segmented; oval
Size: 5/8"
Antennae: Yes
Region: Throughout U.S., most common in the North
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Carpenter ants get their name because they excavate wood in order to build their nests. Their excavation results in smooth tunnels inside the wood. These are large ants ranging in size from one-quarter inch for a worker ant to up to three-quarters inch for a queen.



Habits

All species of carpenter ants mainly attack wood that is or has been wet and damaged by mold. Even though these ants first invade wet, decayed wood, they may soon begin building paths through dry, undamaged wood. They usually come into buildings through cracks around doors, windows, or through holes for wires. They will also crawl along overhead wires, shrubs, or tree limbs that touch the building far above the ground.



Habitat

Carpenter ants build their nests outdoors in various wood sources, including tree stumps, firewood or landscaping. They need a constant water source to survive. Carpenter ants will enter the house through wet, damaged wood.



Threats

Carpenter ants damage wood through their nest building. If they gain entry to a structure, they pose a property threat.