Ants

Proactive and preventative measures get the best results.

Carpenter Ants

OVERVIEW:

Carpenter ants get their name from the smooth galleys they make inside wood timbers to build their nests. They are an amazing critter, and ant species around the world play a vital role in maintaining healthy ecosystems.

HABITS:

In Massachusetts, carpenter ants tend to become active in early spring and remain active until well into autumn. While carpenter ants prefer a moist and punky wood - because it's easier to break off and move around - they will go after dry timbers. They also nest in naturally occurring cavities and voids, and identifying these overlooked areas is an important part of the inspection process.

THREATS:

Taken care of in a timely manner, these pests do very little damage if any at all. Treatment for carpenter ants can be tricky when an infestation is well established, so it is best to take preventative and proactive measures if you start to see medium to large sized ants wandering around your home or business.

PREVENTION TIPS:

There are some measures you can take to get to protect your home - before you spend any money on a chemical treatment

  1. Address any leaks or wood rot – carpenter ants are especially good at detecting these conditions.
  2. Trim back any branches hanging over your roof line. Carpenter ants drop off tree limbs and come in from above. If you are seeing activity upstairs – let us know so we can take a look in the attic! Often overlooked!
  3. Prune back bushes growing against the side of your structure. Letting daylight penetrate to the foundation of your home not only keeps things dry, which reduces pest activity across the board, but pruning away from the building removes a potential ladder for bugs to avoid your foundation treatment.
  4. Don’t stack firewood against your home. Stored wood should be as far away as possible from the structure, and kept on a rack up off the ground to reduce the chances of moist, rotting wood. 
  5. Seal obvious mechanical penetrations into your structure. We will seal openings with semi-permanent fill fabric as part of our Annual Home System program.

If you suspect a carpenter ant infestation, call us right away!  (617) 332-3344

08_carpenter-ant

QUICK STATS

Color icon carp ant-1Color:

Black, red or a combination

 

hourglassShape:

Segmented; Broad head, slim thorax, oblong abdomen

 

Size icon-1Size:

1/4 - 3/4 inch long

 

Region iconRegion:

Found throughout the U.S., especially in the North

 

Odorous Ants

OVERVIEW:

This ant gets its name from the strong, rotten coconut-like smell it gives off when crushed. These ants are one of the most common pests in the United States!

HABITS:

Odorous house ants like to eat sweets, especially honeydew. Indoors, they are likely to nest near moisture sources, such as in wall voids near hot water pipes, in heaters, beneath leaky fixtures in bathrooms, under kitchen or bathroom sinks and also in wood damaged by termites. Outside, they are often found in exposed soil or under stacks of firewood, lumber or bricks.

THREATS:

These ants do not pose a public health risk, but they can contaminate food and should be avoided.

PREVENTION:

  • Clean up spills and crumbs on counter tops and kitchen floors.
  • Eliminate standing water. Pests, such as odorous house ants, are attracted to moisture.
  • Keep tree branches and other plants cut back from the house. Sometimes pests use these branches to get into your home.
  • Make sure that there are no cracks or little openings around the bottom of your house. Ants commonly use these to get into your home.
  • Make sure that firewood and building materials are not stored next to your home.

If you suspect an infestation, give us a call. (617) 332-3344

odorous-house-ant-1

QUICK STATS

Color icon norway ratColor:

Dark brown to blackish

 

hourglassShape:

Segmented

 

Size icon-1Size:

1/16 - 1/8 inch long

 

Region iconRegion:

Found throughout the U.S.

 

Pavement Ants

OVERVIEW:

Pavement ants get their name because they make their nests in or under cracks in pavement. However, they can also infest structures. Pavement ant colonies are moderately large, averaging around 4,000 workers with several queens.

HABITS:

These ants will eat almost anything, including other insects, seeds, honeydew, honey, bread, meats, nuts and cheese. In buildings, they are most likely to be found in ground-level masonry walls of foundations, but they will occasionally nest in walls, insulation and under floors, and near heat sources in the winter. They enter buildings through cracks in the slab and walls, as well as through natural openings. Outside, these ants typically nest under stones, pavement cracks and next to buildings.

THREATS:

These ants do not pose a public health risk, but they can contaminate food and should be avoided.

PREVENTION:

  • Keep kitchens and other dining areas clean and free of crumbs and spills.
  • Eliminate standing water. Pests, such as odorous house ants, are attracted to moisture.
  • Keep tree branches and other plants cut back from the house. Sometimes pests use these branches to get into your home.
  • Seal any cracks or openings around the exterior of your house, especially where utility pipes and lines enter.
  • Make sure that firewood and building materials are not stored next to your home.

If you suspect an infestation, give us a call. (617) 332-3344

pavement-ant

QUICK STATS

Color icon norway ratColor:

Brown with scattered black hairs; gray to white underside

 

hourglassShape:

Segmented

 

Size icon-1Size:

1/16 - 1/8 inch long

 

Region iconRegion:

Found throughout the eastern half of the U.S.

 

Crazy Ants

OVERVIEW:

Crazy ants get their common name from the workers' habit of running in an erratic, jerky manner when searching for food.

HABITS:

Roof Crazy ants feed primarily on live and dead insects, seeds, fruits and honeydew. They enter homes in the autumn or after rainfall because both conditions reduce their supply of honeydew. Inside, crazy ants usually nest underneath floors or carpeting, in potted plants and in wall voids. Outdoors, their nests are shallow and commonly found in soil under objects or next to foundations. Crazy ants are highly adaptable, nesting in both dry and moist habitats.

THREATS:

Crazy ants do not pose a health threat, but if they gain entry to a structure they can become a nuisance.

PREVENTION:

  • Trim vegetation away from your home to prevent pathways inside.
  • Seal all cracks and crevices around the outside of your home, including around doors and windows.
  • Food spills and other potential attractants should be cleaned up as soon as possible.
  • If you suspect you have a crazy ant infestation, contact a licensed pest professional.

If you suspect a roof rat infestation, contact us right away. (617) 332-3344

CrazyAnt

QUICK STATS

Color icon norway ratColor:

Dark brown to black with a gray sheen

 

hourglassShape:

Segmented; extremely long legs and antennae

 

Size icon-1Size:

1/16 - 1/8 inch long

 

Region iconRegion:

Found throughout the U.S.