By using The Spruce, you accept our, What to Do About Flying Ants in Your Home, Termite Fast Facts: What You Need To Know, 6 Tips for Eliminating and Preventing Ant Infestations in the House, Identifying and Controlling Pavement Ants, Control Carpenter Ants Without Pesticides, Why Some Ants Have Wings and Other Questions Answered, Using Orange Oil to Treat Dry Wood Termites, How to Control the Wood-Destroying Carpenter Ant, Cornfield Ants: Identification and Control, 9 Types of Ants (And How to Get Rid of Them), Slate Shingle Roof Basics: What to Know Before You Buy. Ant alates, or flying ants, often have the same characteristics as flying termites. […], Termites A Consequence Of Water Damage By Cindy Trillo, The majority of homes in the US are vulnerable to the possibility of flooding. When trying to determine if what you are seeing are flying ants with wings or termites, there are two things you need to consider: their appearance and their behavior. Termites have two pair of wings (front and back) and are of almost equal length. Both can be damaging to your home, but if you want to get rid of the problem, correct identification is the key. So, if what you see is a crawling white insect, you may have a termite problem! Founder and Chief editor of Termite MD, Pest MD.net, Columbus Georgia Online, Visit Historic Columbus and Stock Car Racer.net. The body segments are clearly separated between the head and the back region, also known as the head, thorax, and abdomen. So we don’t usually get a good look at a termite. However, a closer inspection will show significant differences between the two. 2 Ways Termite Damage Can Cost you Big Money, Termites Swarm in Orlando in September after Hurricane Irma. Differences in Termite vs Carpenter Ant Damage. Termites feed on cellulose in wood and consume timber from the inside out. If you can not identify the bug you catch show it to your Exterminator. However, if you find such a hill, ants are the most likely culprit. Do you think you have a home invader chomping through your home's wood frame in the form of a carpenter ant or termite? Ant VS Termite It is often difficult to determine the difference between termites and ants. Termites can cause a lot of damage to your client’s property, so there’s a legitimate reason to be concerned […], Copyright © 2020 | MH Magazine WordPress Theme by MH Themes. It’s important to know which pest you are treating. These swarmers have a specific job in the colony. Front wings longer than hind wings, tinted brown. These termites may look somewhat like ants but as the image above illustrates, termites have wings that are more or less equal in size, a thicker waist and straighter antennas. In contrast, the ant’s body is constricted/pinched in behind where the wings are attached. You should know these things about termites. If you’re looking at a creature with two wings, the top being longer than the bottom, then you’re looking at a flying ant. – The ant colonies have only one queen, and sometimes two queens. Termite vs. Carpenter Ant Damage. Ant is a small insect closely related to bees and wasps; ants are known to be in existence for around 100 million years ago. Repairing structural essentials like wood supports or subflooring joists can be both expensive and time-consuming. – Both ants and termites are a social animal groups of the Class: Insecta. Get daily tips and tricks for making your best home. When comparing ants vs termites, the first thing to do is to look at their antennae. When termite and ant colonies get big enough, the reproductives will develop wings and become swarmers. Hemera/Thinkstock. Because carpenter ants and termites are so different, effective control measures are also different for each. Lastly, termite bait stations have a deficiency when compared to liquid termite treatments in that they can provide an ideal home for ants and other pests. Myth #2: I Won’t Get Termites If I Have Ants Termites and Home Safety Concerns of Infestations. Both the termite and carpenter ant swarm in the springtime to mate, so they’re often confused for one another by frustrated homeowners. Carpenter ants can often be controlled through the elimination of the conditions which attracted them, but a termite infestation will generally require professional control. Termites also often have heads that would appear built for combat. Certified WDO Georgia and Alabama 1985-2013. The pests can go undetected for years and cause widespread damage. Subterranean Termites can cost you both in money and in your homes equity resale value. In ant species, the male partners typic… The wood will appear to have galleries chewed through with a finely sanded texture. Ants vs. Termites. Termites antennae are almost straight where the ant’s antennae is elbowed. Termite Hill vs Ant Hill. Once These tunnels are more rough-looking than an ant tunnel. Ants and termites – you'd never like to see two animals in your house. Not being able to tell the difference can cost you extra money when you treat. Ants vs Termites – Both ants and termites are a social animal groups of the Class: Insecta. Flying Ant vs Termite Food Sources. These are tubes built on the outside of walls or between the soil and wood and serve as the passageways through which the termites travel. Termites in your home causes Billions in damage repairs. The ant’s life cycle constitutes four stages while the termite’s life cycle has only three stages. For both insects, control will include a multi-pronged approach using different chemicals to kill existing insects and to repel further infestation. There’s three distinct ways to determine between a termite and an ant. Another thing with termites is that their wings are not as durable as ants. By comparison, the termite makes galleries that are rough and filled with layers of mud and soil. How are ants able to carry such large crumbs? You have body segment, you have wings, and then you have antennae. Lisa Jo Lupo has 25 years of experience working in and writing about pest control. For example, termites eat the wood in which they nest. About Termites Termites. Another potentially distinguishing physical characteristic that may help you distinguish flying termites versus flying ants is their color. Termites vs Ants. If you discover termites in your home that happen to be living near an ant colony, there is certainly nothing wrong with letting nature take its course. These termites are often mistaken for ants, as they have very similar looks. Termites are roughly the same size as the many species of large ants that fall into the carpenter ant group; and like carpenter ants, termites burrow into wood, making them the enemy of your home's wood frame. One way to differentiate an ant’s nest and a termite’s mud tube is in the appearance: Ant nests look like a pile of mud called “anthill”, while a termite’s mud tunnel is a straight line that run along structures. They show up nearly everywhere outside. Termite Nests vs. Ant Nests. In set one, you can see that flying termites have 4 wings all of equal length, while flying ants have 2 sets of wings (front and back) that are different lengths. A professional, reputable termite and pest control company with professional, licensed and tenured termite control specialists can inspect your home or business and protect your structure from wood destroying insects like termites and carpenter ants. Ant vs. Termite Myths. Antennae/feelers on the head. In their relentless search, ants will pass through the smallest nooks and maneuvers to get their tasty snacks and food on the table. The way that the two insects interact with wood is different. Much like termite swarms, ant swarms can be seen throughout distinct periods during the year depending on species as reproductive ants seek to establish new colonies. It just so happens that swarmers (termites and Carpenter Ants with wings that are released from the colony when the colony matures) are triggered around the same time of year, commonly by the same conditions. That's a termite. Once you have a basic idea of how ants and termites are different, identifying which one you have will be much easier. Not only could this increase insect activity around a structure, but the presence of an ant colony inside of a bait station will deter termites from entering. Winged Ant swarmers and winged Subterranean Termites swarmers look similar but are completely different. Don’t touch it! Antenna for Ants are elbowed, verses termites who have a straight antenna. […], Hurricane Triggers Late Termites Swarm by Envirosafe Pest Control Orlando staff ORLANDO, FLORIDA — After the flood waters receded in greater Orlando, we were left with a plethora of Water Bugs (American Cockroaches) which were forced out of […], by Guest Author in About Termites Much like termite swarms, ant swarms can be seen throughout distinct periods during the year depending on species as reproductive ants seek to establish new colonies. Flying ants may be distinguished from termites by the following: Ants: Elbowed antennae. Carpenter ants will make galleries and tunnels that are smooth and finished. You may have heard the popular term “white ants” to describe termites. With ants you focus on the body segments. Each has four wings, two pairs, all four termite wings are the same shape and size, verse the ant who ha two pair with each pair of ant wings being a different length. Ants go through four stages of development: egg, larva, pupa, and adult. This article explains how and why. Each has four wings, two pairs, all four termite wings are the same shape and size, verse the ant who ha two pair with each pair of ant wings being a different length. Some ants, like carpenter ants, may find a home in wood, but they don't eat away like a termite in the wood structure. So take a good look at the graphic, not the differences. Termites and ants are two kinds of pests that you definitely don't want in your house. Carpenter ants merely dig into the wood to excavate their nests; they do not eat the wood but simply push it out through openings of the galleries of their colonies. Termites feed on cellulose in wood and consume timber from the inside out. While both species have four wings, termite wings are uniform in size. Termites are harder to spot than ants for this reason. Additional signs include shelter tubes or tunnels that are composed of mud and can usually be found on walls, chimneys, joists, piers, plumbing and additional fixtures. Termites are worse than flying ants. Carpenter ants (Camponotus) and termites (Isoptera) share several similarities, not the least of which, is that they both are notorious for causing wood damage in homes. It is often difficult to determine the difference between termites and ants. Is there anything I can do to prevent a termite infestation? A termite’s wings are generally longer than its body and are rounded on the ends. Ants have long viewed termites as a food source, so termites have adapted to make themselves more difficult to eat. But Subterranean termites are subterranean creatures and when on the surface of the ground they are susceptible to the sun’s ultraviolet rays so they almost never expose themselves to view. Carpenter ants create tunnels and galleries that are very neat, smooth and have a finished appearance. With flying ants, you may only see a few here or there. The termite has 4 wings of equal length. The final instalment of Ant Attack sees the colony take on a 100,000,000 year old enemy - the winged termite. It is important to understand, however, that ants may not be an effective substitute for alternative termite controls. Ant alates, or flying ants, often have the same characteristics as flying termites. Ant and termite problems require different types of treatment, so it's important to know which one you're dealing with. In contrast, the ant’s body is constricted/pinched in behind where the wings are attached. […], How you use Mulch can help prevent Termite Infestation! Termites will eat at wooden structures, which can make them a much bigger problem than ants. Trapping it in a jar is best. The physical characteristics of termites vs. flying ants are noticeable to someone who knows what to look for. A quality termite treatment is all you need to do that. Repairing structural essentials like wood supports or subflooring joists can be both expensive and time-consuming. Termites have two pairs of translucent wings of the same length. On the surface, you would probably think that termites would be the easy victors. Identify termite or ant damage to find the best pest control method. Ants have 2 castes: the worker and the reproductive. Where do fruit flies come from? White ants are not the same as general ants and the treatment is very different. Ant Infestation vs. Termite Infestation No one in their right mind would want either an ant infestation or a termite infestation in their home. At the first sight, even a professional entomologist would be confused before taking a close examination of the features. Color: Ant workers are reddish or dark-colored and are frequently seen in the open foraging for food. 4 Termite Prevention Strategies for your HVAC, Kitchen Termite Damage – Termites in my Kitchen Cabinets, 4 Things You Need to Know about Termites and Mulch, Crawl space Moisture Control stops damage to your floor and framing. […], Here’s a list of 6 different ways I’ve found sub-termites entering home constructed on a cement slab. August 25, 2012 Termites, however, eat the wood in which they nest.Another difference is the wood tunnel they make. Past posts have touched upon how to tell the difference between ants and termites. However, the physical characteristics of these pests can help determine which you are dealing with. What are some signs of a termite infestation? After all, termites are substantially larger than ants – usually by 2-3x, if not even bigger. The sample can be used to compare with online photos and graphics, or you can show it to an entomologist or a pest control professional for identification and recommended treatment. Their appetite for cellulose results in unimaginable damage to wooden materials, including furniture, roofing frames, attics, ceiling boards, and so on. Ants also have 4 wings but the hind wings are much shorter/smaller and the wings have only a few veins that are dark in color. If you discover a swarm of bugs with wings inside your home you’ll want to know which pest you are dealing with, ants vs termites? Though termites can be similar in size to certain species of ants, when observed up close, they have very distinguishable characteristics. Termite Hill vs Ant Hill. Pinched or "wasp-waist". They are generally the same size, have 6 legs each and two antenna and four wings, but study the picture closely and you will see differences. Your email address will not be published. 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