When spring time rolls around, one of the first insects you will start seeing will be carpenter ants. So here is some pest biology on carpenter ants!
Carpenter ants are known as one of the biggest species of ants that are found in the United States which may also give them their other name of “Big Black Ants” although some subspecies of carpenter ants are not limited to a black color. Their size is a huge 1/4 in. – 3/4 in. and are typically black in color (some subspecies are reddish-brown).
They are usually going to be found in damp or moist areas. This may be why you may find them near the kitchen or bathroom area. They are able to forage for food at any time but they will be the most active during the night and are attracted to sweet foods like syrups or juices, and may also be attracted to foods like meats and grease.
The mating season for carpenter ants are typically between March and July, therefore, you will begin to see carpenter ant activity when the spring season begins. Many generations of ants will be found in a given season. Carpenter ants are such a nuisance mainly because of their behavior. When carpenter ants create nests, they will chew into the wood so that they can lay their eggs in wood cavities. This will leave damage to the wood and they will leave behind piles of saw-dust like material. Many times, this damage may not be found until the entire wall or ceiling is open. Although carpenter ants bear nests inside wood, keep in mind that just one straggling ant may not mean that you have an entire nest in your home because carpenter ants are able to travel just about 100 yards to find food. That is the size of a football field. If and when you are seeing continuous activity or numerous ants, you may want to hire a professional to have an inspection done.