Welcome to another episode of the Faith Pest Control podcast. My name is Mike Stewart, I’m your host. And today we’ve got a great subject for you residents of Jasper, Georgia; Blue Ridge, Georgia; Big Canoe and Ball Ground, Georgia and always the folks in Ellijay, Georgia. You know, there are those things called carpenter ants, you know, that makes me think they must do something to wood. Now, I don’t know the bug business, but I do know I don’t like ants. So Fred, tell me what is the problem with carpenter ants? What kind of problems do they cause? What kind of damage do they do? Where do they come from? And what can I do as a homeowner to protect myself from this pesky carpenter ants?
So Mike, if you have carpenter ants in your home, they are generally an indication of a another problem, which is moisture laden, rotten wood. carpenter ants do not attack so to speak, a dry wood or wood that is intact, not rotten. But what they do is, if you have rotten wood around your house, in or around your house, they will galley out the little trails inside the woods, so to speak, and they will nest in in these areas. So your carpenter ants are kind of a dull black, sometimes you can see some little yellowish hairs on their stomachs. But, you know, maybe a half inch to five-eighths of an inch long so they’re the large black ants that you generally see. Most of us here in North Georgia live in the woods. So it’s not uncommon to see them on our decks, you know, walking around the decks, the floor, the handrails coming up the steps. But like I said, they’re, they’re an indication of a problem that you have that you may or may not even realize. Their abundance and size are the major nuisance due to their foraging tendencies. When they’re foraging, they’re out hunting for food, but when they are nesting is when they are doing the damage to your house. Now, carpenter ants, some states recognize carpenter ants grants is a wood destroying organism, but the state of Georgia does not because carpenter ants do not consume cellulose material.
They merely galley it out and nest in it, you can see little, what we would call frass. We might remind you of soil to us to an extent. You know, if you see little piles of that in your home, that could be an indication of carpenter ants. They’re most active here in North Georgia in the late spring, say May to June through early fall, which would be September or October. They’re generally more active at night, they if they are nesting outside your home, but trying to create a nest in your home or if they’re out foraging for food. The best time to see them actively working their trails is about 15 minutes after sundown. They will have massive trails that they create and maintain actually, and they use over and over again the same trails. There’s their natural habitat they’re nesting in a like in the hollow of a tree or not of a tree that is rotted out. There will be massive amounts of them. If you have an infestation inside your home, it’s critical to locate the nest in order to be able to come up with a plan to eliminate them. Locating a nest outside, like I said, is significantly easier at night because you can see them trailing you can follow the trail you’ll go generally speaking right to their nest. One problem can be that their nest is not on your property they travel they can travel several hundred yards from their nest to a food source or a water source if need be. Some things that you can do to prevent issues with carpenter ants, not unlike other types of ants, eliminating excess moisture around your home to make it a less desirable nesting site, standing water and flowerpots, birdbaths, grill covers where they have a little concave hole in them and water will accumulate and set there. Those are some sources of water. If you have rotten or damaged wood at your house, replace that with new wood and trim trees that hang over the house and have a limb that may be touching the siding or the roof or shrubs that may have a limb that’s touching the siding – these are easy entry points for carpenter ants. They will capitalize on these areas of access and can be virtually unnoticed. Especially a homeowner wouldn’t even think about looking at the trunk of a tree to see if carpenter ants are going up and down it and you know, an untrained technician wouldn’t know to look there. But if you’re having a persistent infestation of carpenter ants, you should reach out to your pest control professional to assist you in getting rid of this problem. If you think you might have a problem with carpenter ants, or any past for that matter, call, even if you just have a question, call us at Faith Pest Control. It’s 770-823-9202 and ask to speak to me, Fred Talley, I’ll be more than happy to try to answer all your questions and to help you any way I can.