common ants il

Most Common Ants in Illinois

Everyone has seen tiny mostly flightless insects marching in their home in search of some sweet substance. Though they are small, they can be a mighty annoyance. They are known as ants and we at Madison County Termite and Pest Control have realized that there are three species that are most common in the Illinois area and they all come out in droves right when spring hits. Read on to find out more about these common ants :

Pavement Ant

common ants illinioisThe most common of the three would be Teramorium caespitum or Pavement Ant. These European natives are dark brown and earn their namesake by digging an underground nest; pushing soil into conical mounds beside rocks, driveways, and sidewalks. This makes their nests easy to locate and are just as easily dealt with by ant pest control. The pavement ant searches for food thirty feet or more from the nest looking for grease, seeds, and sweets in particular. Though these ants nest outside, they will travel indoors in search of food or to send out flying members of the species known as “reproductives” to search for suitable locations for new nests.

These creatures are also highly territorial and invade the nests of rival colonies. They can also bite and sting humans however both are hardly noticeable and are completely harmless. Madison County Termite and Pest Control see these ants as a pest because they can attack crops, eating at the roots of young plants and killing them before reaching maturity.

Odorous House Ant

Another common species we deal with is Tapinoma Sessile or Odorous House Ant. These can grow up to an eighth of an inch in length and are a brownish-black color. They are commonly mistaken for their cousin, the pavement ant, and the mistake is realized by whomever or whatever crushes

The odorous house ant releases a strong scent that smells much like rotting coconut hence their name. Though their name includes the word “house”, they usually form nests outdoors and come inside in search of food. They usually nest beneath debris, rocks, or wood and feed on sweets, plant and fruit juices, and meat and dairy products. These ants are extremely tolerant to heat and cold which can make their removal difficult for pest control. Their smelly defense mechanism does not help matters either.

 Carpenter Ant

The last and largest of the common ants is Camponetus pennsylvanicus or carpenter ant. They are called carpenters because of their knack for burrowing tunnels and nests into logs, tree trunks, and window and door frames. We at Madison County Termite and Pest Control find these ants, unlike the previous two species mentioned, tend to build nests indoors which can make them quite a problem.

They are especially a nuisance because these indoor communities are usually small satellite nests for a large, outdoor parent nest. Destroying one without taking care of the other would only lead to the ants rebuilding somewhere else in the home they previously infested. As a pest control company, we look for areas that show signs of sawdust buildup as this usually indicates an entrance to a carpenter ant nest. Also, piles of insect remains can be a sign as carpenter ants keep their nests clear of sawdust and waste, expelling it just outside their home.

Ant infestations need to be dealt with by professionals and there are none better in the area than Madison County Termite and Pest Control. We will use our efficient ant pest control methods to eliminate infestations swiftly and will do our best to prevent infestations and make sure ants think twice about invading your home once let alone again.


Here is a video of the carpenter ant, one of the common ants discussed in this article:


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