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DIFFERENCE BETWEEN CARPENTER ANT AND TERMITE AND SIGNS OF CARPENTER ANT INFESTATION

Difference Between Carpenter Ants and Termites
To the average homeowner, it can be a challenge to determine whether those small, dark, swarming insects inside the home are Carpenter Ants or Termites. Here are a few key indicators that can help you tell the difference:


TERMITE CARPENTER ANT
   
WINGS
1  Has four wings that are of equal size and shape. Its wings are also longer than its body.
2. Carpenter Ants often have a black dot on   the tip of the front wings, and their dark wing veins will be highly visible
3. Termite wings are paddled-shaped

4.Termite wings break off very easily, with barely a touch. Carpenter. Sometimes you can see broken wings in areas where swarming Termites have been active
1.has four wings, with the back, hind wings shorter than its front, fore wings.

2.You will not be able to see the veins in a Termite wing with the naked eye.

3.Carpenter Ant wings are pointed.

 4.Carpenter Ant wings do not break easily
   
Antennae
Termites have an almost straight antennae.
The ants antennae are elbowed.
   
Difference in Body Shape
 Termites have a broad waist, with only 2 segments
Carpenter Ants have a thin, narrow waist and have 3distinct segments.
   
Metamorphosis
Termites go through a gradual metamorphosis.Termites go through the egg, nymph and adult stages
Ants will go from a egg, to a larvae, then pupa and finally to the adult stage in what is called complete metamorphosis. The adult ant worker is an adult and looks like an adult ant.
   
Termite galleries
Wood galleries caused by Termites are accompanied by piles of small, hard, seed-like fecal pellets that do not resemble frass or contain wood shavings and insect parts.
Carpenter Ant galleries
Galleries hollowed out by Carpenter Ants are smooth and clean, and are accompanied by piles of fine sawdust and insect parts, called "frass".
   
WORKER
 Termite workers are transparent, light or creamy white in color and avoid light. So they are not often seen unless their nest is disturbed.
Ant workers are reddish or dark colored and are frequently seen in the open foraging for food
   
MUD TUBE
A mud tube indicates the definite presence or previous presence of termites. These are tubes built on the outside of walls or between the soil and wood through which the termites travel
 
 


COMMON SIGNS OF CARPENTER ANTS INFESTATION



More often the carpenter ant does its damage without anyone noticing. That's because the "evidence" is often hidden in places such as: behind insulation in basements where there may be dampness from improper flashing of stairs or decks; around or in back of dishwashers that may be harboring moisture and behind siding that is hidden or covered by shrubs that are too close to the home.

 Common Signs of Carpenter Ant Infestations

Ant Sightings




 Keep an eye out for ants in your house. While one ant here and there may be common, you should become concerned if you see 20 or more ants. The ants will most commonly be found congregating near a food supply or carrying food back to the colony. Ants mainly forage at night.
Time of Year
While it is possible for carpenter ants to be active any time of the year, they are busiest during early spring. This is when ant infestations are most likely.

Frass or Sawdust



Carpenter Ants damage a home by chewing out the wood and use the tunnels as shelters in which to breed and raise their colonies. Worker ants gnaw out tunnels to house the colony.
They don't use the wood as food, the way termites do. Sometimes homeowners will discover piles of coarse sawdust either inside or beside their house. The piles often look like a cone-shaped pile accumulating just below the nest entrance or hole. This pile may include, in addition to the wood fragments, other debris from the nest, including bits of soil, dead ants, and parts of insects and remnants of eaten food.
Small windows or Damaged Wood
Wood damaged by carpenter ants contains galleries that are very clean and smooth. The wood will have many small, rectangular “window” holes in it, with tunnels that run through the deeper parts of the wood. These windows are actually "garbage chutes" which are used to dispose of frass or unwanted materials.




Water Supply or Moisture problem
In order for a colony to survive, carpenter ants need a ready supply of water. Begin looking for ants in areas of your home that provide this: under the kitchen sink, near the plumbing in a bathroom, around the water heater or in a damp basement. While ants may set up a colony anywhere, these areas are the most likely.




Swarmers
 The winged reproductive’s that take flight in the spring.  Look for them trapped in spider webs, on window ledges or in light fixtures.




Worker carpenter ants
These are active mostly at night, so you may not see any activity during normal working hours.  Even if you do, it does not mean that the nest is nearby.  Worker ants can travel up to the length of a football field booking food.



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Clicking or rustling sounds 
Clicking or rustling sounds can sometimes be heard coming from carpenter ant nests.  If you identify a potential nest site, try tapping against it with a screwdriver.  You may hear a response -- the clicking of alarmed ants.  The use of a stethoscope makes listening easy.
Below are measures you can take to prevent Carpenter Ant infestation:
Minimize moisture conditions
Avoid wood in contact with the ground.
Separate wood from concrete or masonry with a waterproofing compound.
Provide adequate ventilation in damp areas
Keep gutters and downspouts clear of debris
Inspect periodically to detect leaks in roofing and siding, and around chimneys and gables.
Firewood should not be stored in the house or attached garage.
Do not pile wood or firewood against the house.
Trim all trees and bushes so branches do not touch the house.
Trim all shrubs so that they are not in contact with the home and so that you can periodically inspect behind them.
If you suspect your home is infested with carpenter Ants. you should call a pest control company,Remember, a homeowner must follow up treatment with the elimination of moisture and food source, or implementation of preventative measures mentioned above and recommended by pest control.



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