Thief Ants

What do thief ants look like?

many thief ants outside a home in wilmington illinois

Thief ants are one of the smallest types of house-infesting ants. Adults grow to be less than 1/16 of an inch in length. They can be pale yellow, light brown, or dark brown and have a smooth, shiny appearance. Their body segments are unevenly rounded and the thorax lacks spines. They also have a 10-segmented antenna that ends in a 2-segmented club.

Where are thief ants found?

Outside, thief ants are found nesting in open soil or underneath trash, pieces of rotten wood, fallen trees, and in tree cavities. Thief ants tend to create their nests near other ant nests so that they can create very tiny tunnels to connect the nests. The thief ants then enter the other nest and steal their larvae and pupae to use as a food source for their own colony.

Thief ants tend to enter Quad City homes and other structures when the weather outside becomes very hot. They move inside to forage for food. Inside, thief ants use your home’s wires as their own personal highway, moving along them from room to room. If they decide to stay and nest within your home, they can be found in small crevices, underneath floors, and behind baseboards.

What do thief ants eat?

Thief ants prefer to feed on food that is high in protein or greasy. Outside, they can be found feeding on basically anything that is organic, such as other insects, mealybugs, and seeds. Inside homes, they will feed on meats, dairy products, animal fats, oils, bread, nuts, and grease; and while it is not their first choice, they will also eat sweet items like fruit.

DIY thief ant prevention and control tips

Taking the following actions will help you to prevent thief ants from invading your home and property.

  • Remove piles of organic debris and trash from your property.
  • Store woodpiles up off the ground and a distance away from the exterior of your building.
  • Place outdoor trash cans with tight-fitting lids away from the outside of your home until trash pick-up day.
  • Seal cracks and crevices found in your home’s foundation, caulk gaps around windows and doors, seal the spaces found around pipes and wires that enter into your home, and install door sweeps underneath all exterior doors.
  • Wash dirty dishes, and quickly clean up spills and crumbs from floors and counters.
  • Place food in air-tight containers. Don’t leave food out in the open in kitchen or pantry areas.

Professional thief ant control

For help getting rid of thief ants, Quik-Kill Pest Eliminators is the best choice. Our Home Guardian â„  Service targets ants and other household pests that are common to our region. If you’re looking for effective pest control solutions for your home or commercial property, please contact us today!

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