Florida Carpenter Ant

Florida Carpenter Ant

The Florida carpenter ant is a long-legged, swift-moving ant that will occasionally forage into homes or buildings looking for food and nesting sites. These ants are very large, reddish-brown to black, and are typically about ¼ – ½ inch in length. The workers range in size from 4 – 9 mm. They are capable of inflicting a painful bite, but are typically not very aggressive.

Florida carpenter ants prefer to nest in wood that has been damaged by termites or decay, but can also tunnel through sound wood. These ants do not eat the wood but excavate galleries in it to rear their young. They remove the wood in the form of a coarse sawdust. This ant species can establish nesting sites in a variety of locations such as rotten stumps, dead limbs of trees, and underneath logs.

Carpenter ants feed on a variety of plant and animal materials, small insects, and honeydew from aphids and scale. They are well known for being able to forage up to 100 yards in search of food and usually begin this process around dusk. Dusk or shortly after is the best time to search for their nests, and following their trails is the best approach.