Moisture ants are special species of ants, just as the name implies, moisture ants are mostly found in moist areas. This ant establishes their colony in waterlog areas as they require lots of water for survival. In this article, the facts, identification, and how to get rid of this ant are discussed.
Moisture ants might be considered as a nuisance but they are still some amazing facts about these ants. This ant is also known as Lasius, the moisture consist of 133 species which are classified into:
These ants are attracted to a moist environment, they can survive both indoors and outdoors.
Just as any other type of ants, this pest has certain things it gets attracted to, they are easily found in damp wood at times they bear the wood-eating behavior of termites. When these ants are infesting, there’s every possibility that they can eat any wooden furniture they come across, this sometimes makes people consider them as termites.
In cases of damp floors, wet walls, leaking taps, moist furniture, and leaking roofs, these cases constitute favorably breeding conditions for this pest. However, habitat is established and the rate of reproduction increases, this could severely cause damages to the infested home.
Also, they are related to the carpenter ants with the behavior of establishing a colony in the infested wood.
What do Moisture Ants Eat?
These ants will feed on anything sweet especially honeydew from aphids. However, they also eat little insects like planthoppers, mealybugs, and whiteflies. One very strange thing about this ant is that it extends care to young aphids in order to obtain the honeydew they collect. Also, measures have to be taken if you spot these ants in your home as they also feed on food items in the kitchen.
How do Moisture Ants Reproduce?
During summer the females and winged males fly out of the colony in large masses. During this period mating occurs and pregnant females form new colonies. Every colony has a single queen who generates the rest members of the colony.
Not all members of the colony have wings to fly. The female ants and winged males have the ability to fly and, tend to swarm away from their colonies to mate and form new colonies. So point stated is: Yes they fly, but not all fly (some males).
Where do Moisture Ants Build their Habitats?
From their names, it is certain where these ants inhabit. They build nests outdoor under rocks and rotten logs. They also often build habitats underneath these rotten logs. But indoors these ants build nests under your thick, flat concrete floor and push out soil through these concrete cracks. You may see this soil in your home and mistake it for termites, well you’re wrong as its the work of moisture ants.
How to Identify Moisture Ants
Most people do mistake these ants for carpenter ants and sugar ants because of its looks. However, there are lots of features that you can use to identify these ants and differentiate them from the carpenter ant. Below are differences between moisture ants and carpenter ants:
Color: Moisture ants are usually yellow or light brown in color while Carpenter ants are black or dark brown in color.
Moisture Dependence: Of course they are reliant on moisture while carpenter ants are not dependent on moisture but will still feed on a rotten log.
Wings: They have black wings while carpenter ants have white translucent wings.
Finally, when trying to get rid of these pests the same method used to chase carpenter ants cannot be used to treat the problem.
Moisture ants are usually yellow or light brown in color and workers are 4.0 mm to 4.5 mm in length.
How do Moisture Ants Get into My Home?
These harmless pests are often mistaken for carpenter ants and people tend to squash them when they spot them. They are not in any way harmful or dangerous as they will not bite or cause you any harm in your home. They instead serve beneficial purposes as they help in the identification of rotten wood in your home.
You obviously want to know how these harmless creatures got into your home and what attracts them. They tend to survive more in damp areas and are certainly attracted to rotten/decayed wood in your building. The most popular nesting site for moisture ants is mostly your bathroom as water tends to damage wood near bathtubs, etc. If you live in a home with crawl spaces and access to attics your home is definitely at risk as the workers go out in search of honey in such places.
What are the Possible Signs that Moisture Ants are in My Home?
Although these ants are not in any way serious pests, their increase in colony members in an infested area may lead to damage of already decayed wood unless you notice these signs early. Below are signs of infestation:
Accumulation of soil in floors and concrete cracks. These signs are usually said to be caused by termites but are the main signs of a moisture ant infestation.
If excreted wood is visibly seen this is a sign of an infestation.
Spotting moisture ants in your home is a visible sign of an infestation.
If you notice any of these signs in your home do not rush into conclusion but contact an expert for better identification.
How do I Get Rid Of Moisture Ants?
It is more difficult to get rid of these harmless creatures, as these ants are already aware of the source of moisture and will keep coming unless the affected area is dissolved. Below are ways of getting rid of these ants in your home:
Fix areas damaged by moisture and remove any source of leakage in your building.
Get rid of rotten furniture anywhere in your home even outside in gardens, attics, etc.
Use special chemicals to terminate moisture ants and stop an infestation.
If the problem seems out of hand, contact experts to help identify the source and get rid of the problem.
If these pests are not gotten rid of early enough, the situation becomes more serious and intense as it leads to an even more serious infestation by carpenter ants and termites.
Now you certainly know everything about these harmless but yet disturbing creatures. Just as humans, they also love honey I mean who wouldn’t. For contribution or suggestion, feel free to contact us.
Hi, Am Will David, a graduate of Agricultural Engineering, University of Uyo currently an author at Pestclue. With my four years of experience studying agriculture, pest, and pet, I am fit to assist you with solutions related to pests and pets.