The Differences Between Carpenter Ants & Termites

 In In The Media, Pest Control, Pest Control Tips, Pest Prevention

With spring on the horizon, it’s about to be swarming insect season! There are two insects in particular to be wary of this time of year: carpenter ants and termites. These wood-destroying insects are responsible for some of the worst residential pest infestations for homeowners every year. They’re also commonly mistaken for each other in the swarmer stage of their life. Although they both attack wood, termites are infamous for being much more destructive than flying ants. To identify the differences between carpenter ants & termites, keep reading for expert info from the exterminators at Isotech Pest Management.

What do Carpenter Ants & Termites Look Like?

To the untrained eye, it’s very easy to mix up carpenter ant and termite swarmers. The best way to differentiate the two is to look at the size of their wings in proportion to their bodies. Flying carpenter ants are black in color, but can have a slight red hue as well. The most telling feature of carpenter ants is that they measure 1/2″–5/8″ with antennae bent at a 45-degree angle. Carpenter ant swarmers are larger than termites, which is a good way to tell them apart.

Meanwhile, termite swarmers are dark brown to black in color and measure 3/8″ long including the wings. Their wings are a translucent to slightly milky or smoky color, may overlap, and are typically as long as or slightly longer than the body. This is the best way to differentiate them from carpenter ants.

Winged ant vs. termite in Los Angeles CA - Isotech Pest Management

Wood-Destroying Insect Habits & Damage

In the same amount of time, termites cause much more damage than carpenter ants. Some of the things to know about these wood-destroying insects include:

  1. Termites: Make their way into a structure around basement windows, doorways, under siding, porches, or any structure in contact with the soil. Established colonies can range from 60,000 to over a million workers and can consume nearly 5 grams of wood per day.
  2. Carpenter ants: Establish nests in wood that is already in decay, and later expand into normal wood, insulation, or wall voids. The galleries they excavate appear to have been sanded. For the most part, carpenter ants do not create the extensive damage termites do.

Termite & Carpenter Ant Control Services

Bottom line: Both termites and carpenter ants can cause a lot of property damage in your property. If you think you’ve seen signs of a flying ant or termite, it’s best to call the termite exterminators at Isotech. Our team will conduct a thorough inspection on your Los Angeles commercial property to determine whether you’re dealing with carpenter ants or termites. From there, we will work to exterminate these wood-boring insects with the most effective, fast-acting treatments.

The Differences Between Carpenter Ants & Termites in Los Angeles

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