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Photo: Florida Carpenter Ant (Camponotus floridanus) © 2012 Bob Peterson

Photo: Florida Carpenter Ant (Camponotus floridanus) © 2012 Bob Peterson

Carpenter ants are one of the pests you, a homeowner, could have to deal with from time to time. However, before you can know the best Carpenter ant pest control methods to use to rid yourself of the pests you must be sure that you know how to identify these ants. Sometimes they do get confused with termites.

Identifying Carpenter Ants

Look for a waist on the carpenter ants, as this is a major difference between them and termites. The termite’s body is about the same size front to back where these ants have an indented waist. Another big difference is the termites eat wood and destroy structures, and the carpenter ants just nest inside wood. These ants will live in dry or wet wood, but have a preference for wet wood. They do not eat the wood. The ants range in size from 3.4mm to 13mm in length, which makes them one of the largest species of ants living in the United States. Termites are typically 3.175mm to about 25.4mm in length depending on whether they are workers or the queens or kings.

How to Get Rid of Carpenter Ants

You must first locate the nests of these ants before you can rid yourself of them using any Carpenter ants pest control technique. These ants could have their nest in your walls or outside the home. Since they can live in even tree stumps, you may need to do some investigation to find out where the ants are originating. This is best done at night using a flashlight, as these creatures are nocturnal in nature. Once you have located the source of them, then you can start treating to get rid of them.

Photo: Carpenter Ants on Hibisucs Furcellatus © 2011 Bob Peterson

Photo: Carpenter Ants on Hibisucs Furcellatus © 2011 Bob Peterson

There are 4 main Carpenter ants pest control methods, which are:

  • Insecticides
  • Prevent moisture from accumulating
  • Use baits
  • Limit access to home

Insecticides can be turned to, if you are not going to use baits, as these will kill the ants faster than desired with the baits. Check with your local nursery though, to make sure you use ones with low toxicity levels. These could include things such as products containing pyrethrum, silica aerogel, diatomaceous earth or boric acid products. Follow the directions for how these products are applied to eradicate the ants.

Keep moisture from accumulating in your walls and house by fixing any leaks from pipes for part of your Carpenter ants extermination plans. You may also have roof repairs that need to be done to prevent rainwater from coming into the house and attracting these ants with the resulting dampness in the wood.

[threecol_two]Baits are often effective at eradicating the carpenter ants. The substances in these are carried back to the nests by the ants themselves. No other pesticides need to be used with these for these to be effective. This method may take about two months to work completely, but soon you will see no more ants appear and you will know that the baits have done their jobs. Some good baits which have worked for us are Combat Ant Killing Gel, this one can be used outside along with inside. You can use another good bait which is Terro PreFilled Liquid Ant Killer but this one is mainly used inside to help stop the ants getting into your home.

Trim all trees that overhang the house that provide easy access to your house for the ants. You may need to trim other types of plants as well. Examine the perimeter of your house to analyze this. If you find the ants in a tree stump, you may want to remove said stump to prevent a re-infestation.

If none of these methods is successful, you may need to call out a professional exterminator. However, if you have done your research and found the actual nest the carpenter ants have originated from, you should attain favorable results using one or more or the 4 Carpenter ants pest control methods above.[[/threecol_two] [threecol_one_last]
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