No one, except entomologists, is ever happy to see ants in their homes. Unfortunately, as one of the “big three” home invader pests (ants, spiders, roaches), we see much more of them than any of us would ever like! But, not every ant species under the sun is eager to make a nest in your home. Curious about which you need to worry about? Follow along and learn about the ant species in Florida that would love to come in and hang out in your home.
Many compare carpenter ants to termites, and while there are some similarities, there are also clear differences. Carpenter ants love to burrow into wood, including your furniture, baseboards, insulation, crawlspaces, and other areas. Carpenter ants don’t actually eat wood—cellulose is of no interest to them. This helps you identify which of these two pests you’re dealing with, as carpenter ants will burrow out hollows in wood, but will leave piles of the stuff near where they entered.
Carpenter ants are an exceptionally common ant species and come in a wide range of sizes and colors including tan, black, and red.
These dark to bright brown ants feature an odd, heart-shaped abdominal section. Acrobat ants will not burrow like carpenter ants, but they will take advantage of old carpenter ant nests and other pre-hollowed structures. Much of the time they wind up in homes late-season while searching for sources of food.
Also known as sugar ants, this ant species is dark brown to black and features a small but wicked looking stinger. They aren’t as dangerous as fire ants, but their bite is certainly uncomfortable and they have been known to swarm when their nest is in danger. This species also features a stinger but it is usually too small to penetrate the skin. Pavement ants rarely nest indoors, but food-seeking swarms trail travel very far from the home nest and frequently find their way into Tampa and Clearwater homes. They have been known to get into homes in massive numbers, and they often get in via plumbing pipes under or around concrete structures.
As the name of this ant species suggests, Big-headed ants have a much larger head than other ant species—to the point of being unmistakable. Big-headed ants are not dangerous and are nearly never a cause of structural damage to a home. They tend to do more harm to other insects (they are even hostile to other ant species). However, they do occasionally find themselves happily snuggled into carpets and baseboards.
These famously fiery-red ants are potentially quite dangerous, and they feature a nasty stinger that can cause quite a bit of pain. There are over 200 ant species that are called fire ants, and while the ones we find here in Tampa aren’t nearly the most dangerous of them, fire ants should still be avoided when possible. It isn’t common to find fire ants indoors—they prefer open-air—but home ingress isn’t unheard of if they’re short on sources of food. Should you suspect a fire ant infestation, we strongly recommend that you move any pets to a safer area and call on a professional as soon as possible.
Is your home infested by one of Florida’s most common ant species? Don’t stress! McDonald Pest Control has your ant species eradication needs sorted. For years, our locally-owned and -managed pest control company in Pinellas County has been offering superior, comprehensive pest control services.
Contact us today at 727-734-0963 to have one of our pest control experts identify and remove the ant species in your home.