No doubt, at some point most people have spotted a carpenter ant either on the sidewalk, on the porch, or even in the kitchen. The carpenter ant is that black or reddish-black colored ant that is enormous compared to a regular little back ant that we see scurrying around all summer long. This ant can grow to be around a half inch long, with the queen herself being even larger than that. Frequently, homeowners will tend to ignore seeing an ant or two in the kitchen, after all, they may have accidentally come in and one move with a well-placed sneaker usually does the trick. It is a bit different with a carpenter ant though as these guys, unlike their smaller cousins, are much more than a nuisance to have around. Repeatedly seeing these ants in the home can lead to nothing but trouble.
Every spring carpenter ants emerge from their nests which have become distinctly overcrowded. The workers that emerge after the weather warms are winged and are called swarmers. Their main job at this point is to lead a whole new group of ants to find a new nesting site. When they find the perfect spot, their wings drop off, a new queen is crowned, and the workers begin their work making a nest fit for her. That means that hundreds of workers will be chewing their way through the wood that they chose to nest in, making more space and tunnels to get them from point A to point B quickly. That wood could be a fallen log, a nearby tree, or all too frequently, a building that they find a way into.
The carpenter ant has done thousands and thousands of dollars’ worth of damage to homes across the country. They don’t eat the wood like termites, but the end result for a homeowner is the same. A severely weakened structure over time. Another thing that makes the carpenter ant different than termites is that the carpenter ant does not nest is dry wood. They will always look for wood that has been exposed to the elements and suffering water damage. Any home that has had prolonged problems like ice dams under the shingles, missing or broken siding, or gaps around windows and doors have the potential to have water damage under the surface; an ideal spot for carpenter ants to set up shop without anyone even realizing it.
If you suspect that carpenter ants have moved in, don’t hesitate to give us a call at Parkway Pest Services. So many people put off taking care of ant infestations. Waiting until a better time can do nothing but increase the ant population within the walls, as well as the damage to the home. Our team is ready to give your home a full inspection to find the source of the ants and to eliminate them.