Whenever we think about ants, we think about a minor inconvenience. They just scurry around the kitchen looking for food every now and then. However, this is not true for carpenter ants. Carpenter ants are a species that will build their colonies inside wood, and they can cause a tremendous amount of damage to the home if they are left unchecked.
How Much Damage Do Carpenter Ants Do Compared to Termites?
Carpenter ants do not do as much damage as subterranean termites, but they are on par with drywood termites. This is because they build their colonies directly in the wood, which means that it takes a long time for the colony to reach the number of members required to do massive damage. Subterranean termites on the other hand have a colony already built underground, and they can deploy as many termites as needed to fully exploit the wood. However, as carpenter ants and drywood termite colonies grow, the rate of damage that they cause accelerates.
Do Carpenter Ants Pose a Threat to the Inhabitants of a Building?
Carpenter ants do not pose much of a threat to the inhabitants of the building that they infest. They do not have a venomous sting, and they do not usually cause enough damage to affect the structural integrity of the building. However, they may transmit salmonella if they come into contact with contaminated food while foraging. This is a threat posed by all ant species.
How Are Carpenter Ant Infestations Controlled?
Carpenter ant infestations can be controlled either by using baits, or direct applications of insecticide. The control process is best left to professionals, who will be able to ensure that the colony is removed completely. An incomplete removal will result in re-infestation, with the colony rebuilding and continuing to grow.
Baits are the slower control option, but they are appropriate in situations where there is no access to the colony. If the colony can be accessed, dust insecticide can be placed on and near the infested wood. As ants travel in and out of the colony, they will be poisoned by the insecticide and they will die. Soon enough, the food supply starts to dwindle, and the colony will die out due to starvation.
If you would like to know more about the threat posed by carpenter ants, or if you have a carpenter ant infestation that has to be removed, contact us today.