Do Acrobat Ants Inflict Damage To Structural Wood? And Where In A Home Are Nests Usually Found?
Ants belonging to the Crematogaster genus can be found all over the United States. Crematogaster ants are more commonly known as “acrobat ants,” and many species are considered nuisance pests within homes. Acrobat ant pests are also known for behaving aggressively toward humans and other insects, and bites are not uncommon. These bites see small amounts of venom released into the bloodstream, which may cause local irritation, but acrobat ants are not considered dangerous to humans. Acrobat ant workers demonstrate aggression by raising their abdomen over their head and thorax, and this show of flexibility earned these ants their common name. When disturbed or threatened, workers will emit an odor that most reports describe as tremendously foul, and those who have experienced acrobat ant infestations claim that the ant pests emit repulsive odors frequently.
Acrobat ants are also considered economically significant insect pests due to their habit of nesting within structural wood inside of homes. However, unlike termites, acrobat ants only nest within wood that is exceedingly moist, waterlogged and/or decayed. Infestations are often found in the damp wood surrounding windows and door frames. Plumbing leaks and improper outdoor drainage systems often cause structural wood in wall voids and below floorboards to become damp, which creates ideal living conditions for acrobat ants. Naturally, a heavy presence of indoor acrobat ants may indicate that an area of structural wood has become compromised by water leaks or unusually high moisture levels. Acrobat ants also excavate nesting galleries within foam board insulation and sheathing.
Crematogaster lineolata is the most common acrobat ant pest species encountered within homes, and these ants are abundant in the northeast. Other acrobat species found infesting homes in the east include Crematogaster ashmeadi, crematogaster cerasi, and Crematogaster clara. When acrobat ants are found to be nesting within obscured areas within a home, such as wall voids and beneath floorboards, the pests can be eradicated by drilling holes into a wall in order to inject insecticidal dusts. This eradication method will kill every acrobat ant within a nest, but acrobat ants can establish several satellite nests indoors, making thorough inspection important. Colonies found in yards and other outdoor areas are treated by directly exposing subterranean nests to a minimal amount of liquid insecticide. In most cases, eliminating moisture sources from a home will prevent acrobat ant infestations.
Have you ever sustained an ant bite? What kind of ant bit you?
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