Ants

Ants are a very successful insect group with over 1200 species occurring in Australia. All species can be beneficial to the environment. Some eat insect pests such as termites, their nests improve the soil, they quickly recycle nutrients back into the soil and they are food for a wide range of native birds, reptiles and other small animals.

Ants are social insects which live in nests. The nests vary in size depending on their age and the species of ant. They are generally found in the ground, in wood or under rocks, although ants can also nest in walls, fireplaces, under paths and in buildings.

Ant treatments vary according to the species and may include the placement of specific ant baits, the use of pesticide sprays along trails and application of dusts in crevices and weep-holes.

Do I need professional ant pest control assistance?

While a wide range of do it yourself products are available for ants, many times effective control requires a professional pest control service to gain control and prevent recurrence.

Why call in a professional for your ant problem?

Correct identification of the ant species is vital to implement the correct control program. Aerobeam Professional Pest Management licensed technicians have the necessary knowledge and experience to recommend and implement an effective ant control program.

Argentine Ant

Ant identification

The worker of the Argentine ant is approximately 1.6mm in length - body is light to dark brown in colour.

Description

Argentine ants will follow food trails for long distances, this makes finding the nest difficult. They bite but no not sting.

The Argentine ant prefers sweet foods but will also eat live and dead insects, meats, cereals and damaged fruit.

Worker ants are produced in spring and increase in numbers until autumn. Winged ants, reproductive kings and queens, are produced in spring and mature within three months. Argentine ants mate in their nest so no swarming is seen.

Argentine ants drive out other ant species from an area.

Distribution
Australia-wide.
  • Argentine Ant
    Argentine Ant
  • Argentine Ant
    Argentine Ant
  • Argentine Ant
    Argentine Ant
  • Argentine Ant
    Argentine Ant
  • Argentine Ant
    Argentine Ant
  • Argentine Ant
    Argentine Ant

Black House Ant

Ant identification
The worker of the Black House ant is approximately 2.5mm to 3mm in length - body is shiny and black.
Description

These ants are regarded as a nuisance and scavenge in kitchens, garbage and also dog excrement, therefore potentially spreading diseases such as salmonella.

Infesting home and buildings in search of food and water, black house ants are especially attracted to sweet foods but also eat honeydew which is excreted from sap-sucking insects, as a result they are known to tent to aphids and bugs on domestic plants. Black house ants can be aggressive towards other species of ant if disturbed. They are omnivorous, feeding on insects and worms, as well as vegetation, such as small seeds.

Black house ants usually nest under stones or dry logs. The species can commonly be found in gardens.

Black House Ants live in coexistent relationships with other common suburban ants, like the Green-headed ant. The most effective control measure is to find the colony and treat it.

Distribution
Australia-wide.
  • Black House Ant
    Black House Ant
  • Black House Ant
    Black House Ant
  • Black House Ant
    Black House Ant
  • Black House Ant
    Black House Ant
  • Black House Ant
    Black House Ant

Bulldog Ant

Ant identification
The worker of the Bulldog ant is approximately 18mm to 20mm in length - they tend to be red or black.
Description

Bull ants can be very aggressive (if a nest is disturbed, there will be a massive outpouring attack). Bulldog Ants typically nests outdoor in soil and under logs and rocks. They are located mostly in bushy areas (they seldom enter buildings).

They can inflict a very painful sting to humans. The stinger does not remain in the victim, so the Bull Ant can sting repeatedly.

They feed on other insects and things such as honeydew from scale insects or plant nectar.

Each ant belongs to a specific caste and has a specific job to do (there are worker ants, soldier ants, the Queen and the Male – who mates with the Queen).

Bull ant colonies are relatively small, with numbers of individuals in the low hundreds rather than thousands like many other ant species. They have a fertile queen whose sole role is to lay eggs, and infertile female workers who carry out all the work required to keep the colony alive. Seasonally, fertile male and female (new queen) bull ants are produced. These have wings and leave the nest to start new colonies.

Distribution
Australia-wide.
  • Bulldog Ant (Mymecia brevinoda)
    Bulldog Ant (Mymecia brevinoda)
  • Bulldog Ant (Mymecia brevinoda)
    Bulldog Ant (Mymecia brevinoda)
  • Bulldog Ant (Mymecia forticata)
    Bulldog Ant (Mymecia forticata)
  • Bulldog Ant (Mymecia forticata)
    Bulldog Ant (Mymecia forticata)
  • Bulldog Ant (Mymecia gulosa)
    Bulldog Ant (Mymecia gulosa)
  • Bulldog Ant (Mymecia nigriceps)
    Bulldog Ant (Mymecia nigriceps)
  • Bulldog Ant  (Mymecia pilosula)
    Bulldog Ant (Mymecia pilosula)

Coastal Brown Ant

Ant identification

The worker of the Bulldog ant is approximately 1.5mm to 2.5mm in length - they tend to be yellow brown to brown.

The Coastal Brown ants eggs are small in size. The larvae are fed by the adults and after several moults the larvae pupate. Once they are adults, 3 different castes exist:
* Workers are wingless and sterile that lives for approximately a year. Workers are the nest-builders, food suppliers, feed larvae, look after eggs and defend the nest.
* Males are winged and exist to mate with females.
* Females are also winged until after mating and are also the largest in size. Females become the reproductive queen of the colony and live for many years.

Description

The Coastal Brown ant is a very successful invasive species and is considered a danger to native ants in Australia. It has been nominated as one of the hundred "World's worst" invaders.

The Coastal Brown ants nest in soil and build along pathways around the house including gardens and walls. They prefer dry areas for nesting. The Coastal Brown ants excavate leaving mounds along foot paths and other areas that are unsightly.

They feed on meat, sweets, fruit and greasy foods.

Distribution
Eastern Australia
  • Coastal Brown Ant
    Coastal Brown Ant
  • Coastal Brown Ant
    Coastal Brown Ant
  • Coastal Brown Ant
    Coastal Brown Ant
  • Coastal Brown Ant
    Coastal Brown Ant

Fire Ant

Ant identification
Queens 1.59cm long. Workers 3.18mm-6.35mm long. Coppery–brown on the head and body, with a darker abdomen. Fire ants have a very distinctive two–segment antennal club, which is most visible in the front view of the female reproductive ant.
Description

Foraging workers diet consists of dead animals, including insects, earthworms, and vertebrates. Workers also collect honeydew and forage for sweet food, proteins, and fats.

Swarming characteristics – mating between queens and fertile males takes place on the wing mid to late Summer. Males perish after mating. Nest locations can be a mound of up to 40 cm or next to objects found on the ground, e.g. logs.

If aggravated, these react aggressively and can inflict a painful sting, resulting in a pustule some 48 hours later.

These ants are a major agricultural and urban pest, destroying crops and invading residential areas both outdoors and indoors

Strict regulatory requirements apply regarding the identification and treatment of fire ants

  • Fire Ant
    Fire Ant
  • Fire Ant
    Fire Ant
  • Fire Ant
    Fire Ant

Garden Ant

Ant identification
Workers 4-5mm long. Queens 15mm long. Dark brown-black in colour. No sting present.
Description

Foraging worker ants follow well–defined trails around food sources. Sweet foods are preferred but high protein foods will also be taken.

Swarming characteristics – mating between queens and fertile males takes place on the wing mid to late summer. Males perish after mating.

Nest locations – often outdoors in soil and below paving slabs on the sunny side of buildings. Nest locations can be identified by the presence of finely powdered soil around nest exit holes.

Distribution
Eastern Australia
  • Garden Ant
    Garden Ant
  • Garden Ant
    Garden Ant
  • Garden Ant
    Garden Ant
  • Garden Ant
    Garden Ant

Ghost Ant

Ant identification
Workers 1.6mm long. Pale/Translucent legs and abdomen.
Description

Indoors the Ghost ant will eat sweet substances and grease. Outdoors they eat insects that produce honeydew.

Nest locations in indoors are in small spaces and wall voids. Outdoors they will nest on pot plants, under objects on the ground and under loose bark. The Ghost ant is attracted to high moisture areas and can be found in kitchen and bathroom cabinets. The Ghost ant colonies can occupy several different nesting sites.

Distribution
Australia-wide
  • Ghost Ant
    Ghost Ant
  • Ghost Ant
    Ghost Ant

Green Head Ant

Ant identification
Green Head ants are approx 5-6mm in length. They are black with a metallic green head. Green Head ants have a distinctive appearance and odour.
Description

Green Head ants usually nest in small colonies under paths and among rockeries. They live in bushy and urban areas.

They feed mainly on materials of vegetable origin and very rarely enter homes. Can inflict a painful sting to humans.

Distribution
Australia-wide
  • Green Head Ant
    Green Head Ant
  • Green Head Ant
    Green Head Ant

Odorous House Ant

Ant identification
Odorous House ants are 1.59mm to 3.18mm in length. They cab be black or brown. Antennae have 12 segments and are not terminated with a club. Produce a coconut smell when crushed
Description

Odorous House ants eat most household foods, especially sugary food, eg sweets and fruits such as melon. Also eat pet food.

They are attracted to moisture. In hot, dry environments nests can be found in house plants and even lids of toilets. Colonies - range in size from 100-10,000.

Distribution
Australia-wide
  • Odorous House Ant
    Odorous House Ant
  • Odorous House Ant
    Odorous House Ant
  • Odorous House Ant
    Odorous House Ant
  • Odorous House Ant
    Odorous House Ant

Pavement Ant

Ant identification
Dark brown or blackish and 3mm long. Pavement ants gave two spines the back and two nodes on petiole. There are grooves on head and thorax. The thorax is uneven with 1 pair of spines. They have 12-segmented antennae with 3-segmented club. Winged pavement ants are often mistaken for termites.
Description

Pavement ants eat almost anything that humans eat, and also pet food.

They are often seen entering houses looking for food, most often at night. May move through pipes and electrical wires.

Pavement ants nest in lawns or under stones, wood, or boards. Mounds built along sidewalks, baseboards, and near foundations in clusters. Colonies are usually found near water.

Distribution
Australia-wide
  • Pavement Ant
    Pavement Ant
  • Pavement Ant
    Pavement Ant
  • Pavement Ant
    Pavement Ant
  • Pavement Ant
    Pavement Ant
  • Pavement Ant
    Pavement Ant

Pharaoh's Ant

Ant identification
Workers 1.5-2mm long, yellow-brown with brown abdomen. Males 3mm long, black, winged. Queens 3.5-6mm long, dark red in colour with wings. Black eyes, 2 small segments at the pedicel.
Description

Well–defined trails are laid which are often associated with heating systems. Feeds indoors on high protein foods — meat, fats, blood, dead insects, etc.

New colonies are often formed through nests that have been disturbed e.g., as a result of insecticide spray treatments.

Multi-queen colonies. Each queen produces up to 3,500 eggs in its lifetime. Colonies can range from a few dozen to 300,000 individuals.

Nests are deep seated in cavities in heated buildings. Often found in hospitals. Associated with humid conditions.

Distribution
Australia-wide
  • Pharaoh's Ant
    Pharaoh's Ant

Singapore Ant

Ant identification
Singapore ants are 2-3mm in length. They are light brown with a darker posterior abdomen.
Description

The Singapore ant eats a variety of food materials, including protein and sugar-type materials.

Typically nests in and around buildings, in cracks, crevices, wall cavities, behind skirting, under paths etc. The most problematic feature of this pest is its attraction to plastics in electrical, irrigation and other equipment.

The Singapore ant has a fairly painful sting.

Distribution
Australia-wide
  • Singapore Ant
    Singapore Ant
  • Singapore Ant
    Singapore Ant
  • Singapore Ant
    Singapore Ant
  • Singapore Ant
    Singapore Ant

Sugar Ant

Ant identification
This species vary greatly in shape, size and colour. Range from 2.5 to 15 mm, and are some of the most often seen ants due to their size and often bright colouring.
Description

Sugar ants often nest in a variety of sites ranging from holes in wood to the roots of plants, twigs of trees and shrubs, between rocks or in the soil. They can also be seen during the day however, they are most active at night.

They are unable to sting, but they do possess strong mandibles which can bite. In self-defense these ants are also able to spray acid from their abdomens to deter predators.

Sugar ants feed on dead and lives insects, household waste and are attracted by sweet food. They rarely enter houses.

Distribution
Australia-wide
  • Sugar Ant (Camponotus aeneopilosus)
    Sugar Ant (Camponotus aeneopilosus)
  • Sugar Ant (Camponotus aeneopilosus)
    Sugar Ant (Camponotus aeneopilosus)
  • Sugar Ant (Camponotus consobrinus)
    Sugar Ant (Camponotus consobrinus)
  • Sugar Ant (Camponotus consobrinus)
    Sugar Ant (Camponotus consobrinus)
  • Sugar Ant (Camponotus nigriceps)
    Sugar Ant (Camponotus nigriceps)
  • Sugar Ant (Camponotus nigriceps)
    Sugar Ant (Camponotus nigriceps)
  • Sugar Ant (Camponotus nigriceps)
    Sugar Ant (Camponotus nigriceps)

White-Footed House Ant

Ant identification
The worker of the White-footed house ant is approximately 2.7mm in length - body is dark brown/black in colour - yellow-white feet.
Description

Feeds on plant nectar and honeydew. Does not bite or sting, nor does it cause structural damage; considered to be a nuisance pest because they are frequently observed foraging in kitchens, bathrooms, and the exterior of buildings.

Technomyrmex species are general scavengers, form long foraging trails and often enter houses in search of food and water. Workers can be recognised by their habit of raising the abdomen while in motion.

The White-footed House ant is very invasive. A colony can contain up to a million ants and tend to spread out into satellite colonies which nest in different locations. Nests are often in dry sites off the ground outdoors (e.g. in rotten wood, under loose bark on trees) and in wall cavities of buildings.

Nearly half the colony is made up of fertile females, these are winged and larger than wingless females. Winged males mate once before they die, wingless males are capable of multiple mating. The colonies reproductive capabilities are huge making the White-Footed House ant difficult to eradicate.

Adult workers are wingless females and are the ones seen looking for food.

Distribution
Australia-wide.
  • White-Footed House Ant
    White-Footed House Ant
  • White-Footed House Ant
    White-Footed House Ant
  • White-Footed House Ant
    White-Footed House Ant
  • White-Footed House Ant
    White-Footed House Ant
  • White-Footed House Ant
    White-Footed House Ant

Having trouble with ants?

Depending on the species of ant, our licensed technicians can assist you with a flexible, tailored pest control solution to meet your needs in your home or workplace.

Why Choose Aerobeam Professional Pest Management?

We offer a complete pest control and management service.
  • Obligation free quote
  • Over 25 years experience
  • Licensed Technicians
  • HACCP certified company
  • Thorough inspections
  • Professional prevention advice
  • Safe, targeted treatments
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Fast response
  • Regular inspections
  • Convenient treatment times
  • Ongoing support