The carpenter ant is no typical ant. They aren’t out to invade your summer picnic, or marching in to enjoy the drips of ice cream left on the patio. Carpenter ants are a destructive ant species that tunnel through wood to create a nest. If you spot carpenter ants in or near your home, it is crucial to call a Fort Worth ant control professional ASAP to prevent costly repairs later.
How Do You Know Which Ants Are Carpenters?
How do you know if you are seeing carpenter ants? Usually, they are black and somewhat long. They have a single, barbed node between the abdomen and the thorax. Their antennae are elbowed. The most common carpenter ants measure 1/4-1” but can get longer, making it easy to differentiate from smaller ant species. When a carpenter ant is spotted, it is usually alone or only with a few others. Some have wings, others do not.
Signs Your Fort Worth Home Has Carpenter Ants
The evidence of carpenter ants in your Fort Worth home can be seen as smooth, shallow trenches running along moist wood surfaces. Often, the evidence cannot be seen because it is below ground or close to the ground. More visible areas could be at the base of a door or windows. Carpenter ants do not eat the wood like termites do, so the wood dust or “frass” may be apparent from a carpenter ant hole in the wood. The wood will look chipped away, but smooth as if sandpaper was used. Termites typically do much more damage than carpenter ants, but left to nest and breed in your home, they can grow to large and destructive populations. The more ants, the harder it is to rid your home of these pests.
What Are These “Pests” Doing For Us?
Do carpenter ants have any value at all in the ecosystem? Absolutely yes! They chew up tons of wood and turn it into frass which is compost for new growth. In the forest, the carpenter ant is a hero. Decomposing trees break down faster because the carpenter ant is doing its job. However, when they come into our homes or businesses, they are considered pests.
How To Prevent Carpenter Ants
The best defense from carpenter ants is to be preventative. Caulk any cracks or holes, including around electrical and water lines that come into the structure. Having 12-15” of gravel around the perimeter of the home will deter the pests. Always check firewood before bringing it into the house, and be sure to store it away from the home. Be sure to repair any soft wood, clogged gutters and remove any decaying stumps in your yard. Lastly, repair deck wood, porches and roofs to avoid tempting the carpenter ants with moist wood.
Buzz Kill Pest Control Can Help Rid Your Home Of Carpenter Ants
If you suspect that you have carpenter ants, contact you pest control professional. Employing a licensed pest management company, like Buzz Kill Pest Control, will help you locate the nests and destroy them. Although some DIYers have claimed success in eliminating carpenter ants in their structure, there is no guarantee that the pests are gone. By using a professional pest control company, you get a guarantee that if you see more, that professional will come back to inspect and treat again. Catching a carpenter ant infestation early may save you a lot of money down the road.