Twig ants are also known as elongated or Mexican twig ants and migrate from Florida, Hawaii, and other parts of the United States. They have a small size ranging from 8-10 mm, and adult ants look similar to wasps without wings.
Are Twig Ants Aggressive? Twig ants are not aggressive, but they can sting humans and other predators if they try to attack or damage their colony. Their sting can be painful and last for many hours or days, as they inject venom when biting or sting with pinchers into the body. Their venom contains formic acid, which can cause skin irritation and other problems.
They have different colors, which can confuse people about their identification, such as they can have dark brown, black, and orange-brown colors. Their heads are usually dark, and their lower body part has an orange shade.
Why Are Twig Ants Aggressive?
They are the pesky little ant specie that can cause damage to landscaping and indoor wood products. People often think these are aggressive when detecting danger, but they are not as aggressive as fire ants.
They show prompt response when predators attack and try to protect the colony or the young teammates but do not react aggressively as fire ants and bulldog ants to the predators.
They relocate or migrate from the previous location if constantly disturbed by predators or humans because no one wants to have these tiny irritating insects in their homes or backyard.
They often make colonies in trees or from dry plants and dead insects, and you can also find them inside the house, as they make their way inside the house when predators attack or search for food.
They go individually in search of food, and you cannot find a large number of these insects collectively in one place except their colony.
They team up and attack the predators or danger to save the colony in difficult situations; however, they do not attack as the other ants do.
Can twig ants bite humans and pets?
Twig ants do not bite humans or pets but can sting when they detect danger or are disturbed continuously. The sting can be painful and can last for many days but not as painful as the sting from a bullet ant.
They can get into your clothes from the garden or fall from a tree ad sting you when trying to get a way out of your clothes. They only sting when some attack the colony and show normal behavior under normal conditions.
The sting can be more painful if you strike them out from your clothes or body instead of gently brushing them because they sense danger immediately and respond accordingly.
Therefore, it is better to pick them gently from your clothes and throw them away, as the sting can cause discomfort and nuisance.
What does a Twig ant bite look like?
These ants do not bite but sting, which looks like swollen patches on the skin and redness around the area where they sting. The skin area where they bite does not swell immediately but starts swelling after a few hours.
However, you feel the pain immediately after they sting the body, and you can also feel irritation on the body part stung by these little black-orange ants.
It is better to go for immediate treatment when you feel irritation or notice that the stung body area is swelling because it can cause infection if you have sensitive skin, and apply an ointment to reduce the itching.
Some people have sensitive skin, and the ant sting can get worse if they keep on itching the spot where the insect stung, which can leave a red mark on your skin.
Are twig ants poisonous?
The venom of most ants contains formic acid, also called methanoic acid, which can cause different sink problems if they inject this venom is your body.
They inject this venom only when they feel danger, or you disturb their colonies. However, twig ants can be toxic to humans, pets, and insects.
They release a chemical into the body, which can cause different skin problems if not treated immediately and properly.
People often think ants are not poisonous and do not harm pets and humans, but they can cause severe problems.
It does not cause any harm until the ant bite and then spray the venom into the body, which causes more pain. It often feels like the ant is biting or stinging, even when you remove it from your clothes or body.
What do twig ants eat?
Twig ants eat insects, such as lepidopteran larvae and sweet flower and leaves nectar. They also eat honeydew from other insects, and the presence of these ants in your garden shows that butterflies, aphids, and moths are present because they are attracted to these insects.
They eat fungus spores, which are grown on the food sources, and store them for later use when no food is available for the young larvae.
They can eat the sugar secretions from different insects and prey on these insects to get food and survive. Therefore, they build colonies to easily prey on these insects and take food to the nest.
They build colonies in trees, and their small bodies are perfect for entering small and narrow places. They do not get out from their nest together, as they prey and get food to the colony individually.
Why are Twig ants coming into my house?
They can take a ride on humans and enter the house. They seek suitable places to build colonies and are mostly found inside wooden doorframes.
They can get into the house if the house owners have planted different plants inside the house, which attract aphids, butterflies, and other insects.
They enter this place searching for food and build colonies near the food source. They can also make small colonies in dead foliage, and plants stem in your backyard.
The infestation inside the house is rare; however, you can get twig ants infestation in your backyard due to dead plants, leaves, and rotted wood.
They prefer to build colonies outdoors to prey on different insects and switch their living place when they detect danger from predators. Therefore, they are most likely to get caught and exterminated by the house owners if found inside this place.
I found a colony of twig ants in my backyard and put on an insecticide to get rid of them, but they returned after a few days. I searched for their constant presence and concluded they were attracted to the aphids and butterflies on the flower plants.
Are Twig ants helpful in the garden?
People often think that twig ants are not good to be found in the house or backyard, but they have some advantages inside the house.
They can prey on other insects that can cause damage to plants, trees, and flowers, such as aphids and moths. However, they can offer natural insect control instead of spending money and hard work to remove these insects.
However, the severe infestation of these ants can make their way inside the house and damage the wooden property or the food inside the kitchen through cracks in the wall or other openings.
Therefore, it is better to take action or call the ant exterminator if you observe severe infestation in your backyard or inside the house.