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Ant pests are hard to eliminate from the houses that they infest, and before a pest control treatment is performed on an ant-infested property, the species of ant pest must first be identified, as methods of ant pest control differ depending on the species. Making note of the particular areas where ant pests prefer to establish nests, and determining what they like to eat can be tremendously helpful when attempting to identify a particular species of ant pest found indoors. Some ant pests build nests within the soil in residential yards where worker ants may repeatedly invade the closest house in search of food sources. Other ant pests establish indoor nests within wall voids, attic spaces, beneath floorboards and other concealed indoor areas, but many ant pest species are capable of establishing both indoor and outdoor nests.

The types of human food sources preferred by ant pests varies by species, but indoor ant pests may feed on foods and materials containing starches, meats, fats and sweets. Some  of the most commonly encountered ant pests in homes in the northeast include cornfield ants, carpenter ants, and larger yellow ants. Each of these three species demonstrate different infestation behaviors and no one single pest control method will eradicate all ant pest species from infested houses.

A few carpenter ant species can be found in the northeast, but the black carpenter ant is the most destructive and commonly encountered species in the region. Carpenter ants are well known for tunneling through natural and finished wood sources that have a high moisture content. These pests generally establish nests within structural wood sources that have become waterlogged or decayed due to plumbing leaks, rainwater runoff, floods, or heavy bouts of rain. However, most carpenter ant infestations see workers emerge from either concealed indoor nests or outdoor nests located in order to forage for human food sources within homes. Carpenter ants eat sweets, meats, and syrup within homes, and their relatively large body size and jet black appearance makes them easy to recognize. Pest control professionals eliminate carpenter ant infestations by injecting insecticidal dusts into nests located in wall voids, and some baits have proven effective at controlling these ant pests.

Unlike carpenter ants, cornfield ants establish nests on lawns, and almost never within homes. These ants create numerous unsightly crater-like impressions on lawn grass while building their subterranean nests. Cornfield ant infestations should be prevented with residual insecticide soil barriers around properties. Larger yellow ants do not nest within homes, and workers do not invade homes to secure human food, but they establish nests immediately next to or beneath foundations and concrete slabs where they often gain access into wall voids and swarm into homes. Luckily, these ants can often be eliminated from homes by hand or within a vacuum. Aerosol pyrethrin-based insecticides.

Have you ever found dead winged ant species around your home’s door frames or window sills?