Ant Control

Fire Ants

Ants in Grand Rapids, Michigan

Did you know that there are over 10,000 ant species in the US alone? Ants are regarded as the most hardworking insects. Not only do they reside in colonies supported by a single or multiple queens, but they are known to carry objects 10 times their body weight. When it comes to the identification of an ant species, it can be quite difficult especially if you lack the knowledge.

 

Types of ants commonly found in Grand Rapids, Michigan

  • Carpenter Ant

Also referred to as Camponotus pennysylvanicus, they are commonly confused with termites especially during spring and early summer when they become winged.

How to identify a carpenter ant

The workers measure ¼ an inch long while the Queen measures ½ an inch long. They are blackish in color, have 6 legs and they don’t eat wood unlike termites.

What they eat

They are attracted to sweet substances, fats, grease and meats.

Where do they thrive?

It is important to know that carpenter ants reside in colonies which can live for 3 to 6 years. They love to reside in moist and dry wood but preferably wood dampened by water leaks. These ants avoid contact with people and they don’t sting. They settle around basements, foundations, roofs, porches, windows, doors and sink drains.

 

  • Odorous house ant

Scientific name – Tapinoma sessile.

How to identify an odorous house ant

It is small and characterized by reddish brown or black color. It is grows to between 1/6 and 1/8 inch in length. Its antenna has 12 segments and terminated with a club. They have 6 legs, live for several years with an adult phase development of 34 to 38 days.

What they eat

They feed on sugary food for example candy, fruits like melon and even pet food.

Where do they thrive?

They are attracted to moisture in hot and dry environment. Their nests can be located in house plants and toilet lids and they are known produce a coconut like smell when crushed. The colonies range in size from 100 to 10,000.

 

  • Pharaoh’s ant

Scientific name – Monomorium pharaonis

How to identify a Pharaoh’s ant

The Pharaoh’s worker ant measures 1.5 to 2 mm long. They are yellow brown in color with a brown abdomen. Males measure 3 mm long, are black in color and winged. The Queen measures 3.5 to 6 mm long and its characterized by a dark red color and wings. They all have 2 small segments at the pedicel.

What they eat

They feed indoors on high protein foods for example meat, fats, blood and dead insects among others

Where do they thrive?

Their nests are located deep in heated buildings. They also nest in humid conditions where colonies range from a few dozen to 300,000.

 

  • Slab ants

How to identify slab ants

They are light brown to black in color with appendages lighter than their body. Pavement ants measure 2.5 to 3 mm long with parallel lines around the head and thorax.

What they eat

Just like other ants, they forage for sugary foods, protein and dead insects. To make it easier when it comes to searching for food, they set up trails from their nests. They usually enter a home to forage for food thus becoming a nuisance especially when they infest a kitchen or garden patio.

Where do they thrive?

They build nests under stones, along curbs and cracks found on pavements. On some occasions, they do reside indoors in walls and under floors.

 

  • Acrobatic ants

How to identify acrobatic ants

They are light brown to dark brown in color. With heart shaped abdomens, they measure 1/16 to 1/8 inch in length.

What they eat

They are known to consume protein rich foods like meat and dead insects. These ants also fancy sugar rich foods.

Where do they thrive?

Acrobatic ants get their name from holding their abdomens in an upright position when walking. They do bite occasionally and produce a repulsive odor when disturbed. Unlike termites, acrobatic ants do not cause much structural damage. When they invade a home, they nest in damp areas for example foam sheathing behind siding. They do infest wood damaged by termites or carpenter ants and are known to infest a home during spring and early summer.

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