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Carpenter Ant or Termite? Know What They Look Like

Ants and termites – two similar pests with very similar characteristics. These crawling insects prefer to live outdoors but oftentimes find their way indoors to search for food and shelter. Though they're similar in size and anatomy, they differ with their dietary habits. Ants like sweets, and termites enjoy wood.

The Main Difference Between Ants and Termites

Some ant species, such as carpenter ants, are most like termites as they build their nests in wood. The key difference is that carpenter ants don't consume the wood as they chew and build tunnels. They only want to burrow deep into the wood so that they can have a secure place in which to raise their young.

Termites also build their nests in wood. However, they devour the wood as they expand into the structure. Whereas carpenter ants only leave behind small holes and tunnels, termites leave nothing behind. They feed on the cellulose in the wood, using it as a food source not only for the adults but also for the developing young.

Carpenter Ant and Termite Damage

Whether it's carpenter ants or termites, both species damage timbers such as residential homes and other wooden buildings. Fortunately, carpenter ant damage is merely cosmetic. The holes can be plugged and covered, and the sawdust can be swept away after eliminating the pests. Termite damage is more severe as it compromises the internal structural integrity, leading to collapses and other damage such as wood rot.

In fact, termites cause billions of dollars in damages in a single year. In that time, a colony can consume almost 10 pounds of wood. If multiple colonies attack the same structure, it won't take long for the damage to reach dangerous levels.

The Importance of Inspections

Early detection is the key to stopping termite damage before it reaches costly proportions. Termagon has the tools and the experience to detect and to eliminate termite colonies in homes and businesses. Knowing the difference between termites and carpenter ants can help prevent misidentification and using incorrect treatments. Our professionals can identify the pests and use the appropriate treatments to stop the ants or the termites from invading and destroying your property, so contact us today!

We proudly serve a number of Arizona locations, including Sahuarita, so be sure to check out our service area today to see where we can make it!

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