Types of Ants in Georgia

Almost 20 to 25 types of ants are native to Georgia, while a few are imported to this region of South America, having distinct appearances and behavioral characteristics.

Types of ants in Georgia include Florida carpenter ants, black carpenter ants, fire ants, pharaoh ants, argentine ants, pavement ants, longhorn crazy ants, thief ants, dark rover ants, acrobat ants, sugar ants, and odorous house ants.

Some ants found in Georgia are not considered harmful pests, but a few are responsible for structural damage to your homes.

Ants in Georgia Average colony size Nest Locations
Florida carpenter ants 10,000 to 15,000 Attic, wooden pillars, frames
Black carpenter ants 30,000 to 40,000 Bath traps, wall voids, sinks
Fire ants 200,000 to 300,000 Lawns, golf courses, meadows
Pharaoh ants 1000 to 100,000 Trash piles, bedding, appliances
Argentine ants 10,000 to 100,000 Sidewalk, stones, boards
Pavement ants 8,000 to 10,000 Cracks in roads, floors, wall voids
Longhorn crazy ants 1000 to 2000 Litter, tree logs, decaying wood
Thief ants 500 to 3,000 Cabinet voids, curbs, rocks
Dark rover ants 100 to 1000 Mulch, leaf litter, bricks
Acrobat ants 1000 to 10,000 Wood galleries, window frames
Sugar ants 50 to 50,000 Rocks, vegetation, landscape
Odorous house ants 200 to 10,000 Rotten logs, sidewalks, brick piles

Florida carpenter ants 

Camponotus floridanus build larger colonies comprising 10,000 to 15,000 members that a ring of hair close to the anal region can distinguish.

You can find their colonies in the wooden frames, pillars, and attics, as these areas have lesser foot traffic and are less frequently cleaned. Dirty or decaying surfaces allow them to live inside.

They prefer foraging at night to avoid the risk of dehydration or death because hot rays of sun falling on their bodies can lead to evaporation of moisture.

These organisms require carbohydrates and protein-rich food to perform activities and grow in size, as these muscular structures need amino acids.

Furthermore, their colonies are polymorphic, containing many workers of varying size and color, but produce pheromones of the same chemical nature and odor.

Black carpenter ants

Black carpenter ants create bigger mounds to accommodate massive colonies based on 10,000 to 20,000 workers at minimum.

Colonies possess only one queen but a large number of drones. These growing colonies allow the production of swarming insects after almost 2 years.

However, their population can increase from 40,000 to 50,000 when the mating period is at its peak, allowing the production of a larger number of larvae.

They prefer to live in moist wood having narrow tunnels that can get larger in diameter with continuous chewing effort. Decaying windows, bath traps, and door frames also have insects.

Fire ants

Fire ant colonies possess thousands of members with hundreds of queens and expand on a larger surface area. They contain almost 200,000 to 300,000 workers, with 100 to 200 winged females.

However, drones are fewer than workers but are almost twice for winged females. These deadly ants are common in lawns, meadows, and golf courses.

They can cause painful bites and stings, and the pain lasts for almost several hours. They are named for causing a burning sensation after the entry of poison into the skin.

Most commonly, you can find them living in open areas having direct sunlight, like pastures, lawns, and even agricultural lands, and are responsible for crop loss.

Pharaoh ants

Trash piles provide a suitable place for crawling insects like pharaoh ants to live inside and get sufficient nutrition to live and multiply in number.

These notorious insects appear transparent and reach inside buildings for moisture and food as they like to eat sugary and greasy foods. These are not dangerous insects due to the absence of a stinger.

They can also reach appliances and bed linen in search of warmth and become annoying pests as they can bite on the skin. Their colonies are not smaller and range between moderate to large.

In addition, these insects also get attracted to appliances as an electric field seizes their bodies, and the one caught in the electric field releases chemicals to call other fellows.

Moreover, these winged females in this species do not leave their nests to mate like others, but the drones come inside nests to mate with the queen.

Argentine ants

This species of ants form larger colonies and bigger nests that are around 7 to 8 inches deep. You can find their mounds in open habitats and wet environments.

Most colony members are equal in size, and their colonies are monomorphic, but the queens are almost twice the workers’ body size.

More than one queens are present with a hundred thousand workers in a single colony, with an average colony size of almost 10,000 to 100,000.

They form nests, usually on the sidewalks and close to the plant’s roots, where they find plenty of food sources and a moist environment that are essential for survival.

Pavement ants

These reddish-brown insects crawling on the sidewalk can reach inside the kitchen if their smell receptors receive pleasing odor molecules of food.

They like greasy food, cheese, butter, and sweet items.

In addition, their colonies are of moderate size comprising a few thousand members ranging between 8000 and 10,000, but it can get slightly higher than this range sometimes.

Worker ants are a significant proportion of the nest population, while queens and drones are only 8 to 10%. Additionally, the population of swarming insects gets increases during mating season, and you see many of these if you live in Georgia.

They can be seen on roads and floors with narrow or bigger cracks and wall voids to hide from predators and enjoy warmth in the narrow spaces.

Longhorn crazy ants

Paratrechina longicornis are greyish ants having 3 to 4 mm body length containing numerous hair covering a large proportion of their bodies and larger legs.

Moreover, they have antennae divided into 12 segments but lack segmented clubs. As a result, they form moderate-sized colonies containing thousands of members ranging between 1000 and 2000.

Their colonies contain multiple queens that can quickly replace dying workers with a new brood as their lifespan is only 2 to 3 months.

Accordingly, the absence of workers can affect colony survival, so it needs to be well-populated to enjoy plenty of food and active nests.

If you have seen a few crawling ants inside your home, you can look for their colonies in outdoor areas, like under leaf litter or within a decaying wood.

Thief ants

This specie has a smaller body and tiny eyes that do not support good vision due to a smaller number of ommatidia within their compound eyes.

Similarly, their stinger is smaller enough to avoid the risk of stinging as it cannot pierce through the skin to enter deep into the tissues. These insects prefer protein-rich food over carbohydrates.

In addition, they form smaller nests as they do not have bigger colonies to create space for thousands of insects because their colonies have only a few hundred to thousand members.

Wooden cabinets, curbs, and rocks are ideal nesting spots for these insects, allowing them to live inside the comfortable habitat by building deep tunnels in wood through a decaying process.

Dead insects, insect larvae, and seeds are more alluring foods for these insects than jam and sweet cake crumbs, as they do not have a sweet tooth.

Dark rover ants

These insects can live within mulch and leaf litter as their colonies are smaller, comprising 100 to 1000 members. These are not considered dangerous pests but are nuisances inside homes.

It appears brown in color and extends from 1 to 2 mm in length.

The foraging workers and swarming members of the colony can get inside the buildings and find a suitable spot to create a new nest.

In addition, it is native South American states, including Georgia and others on the borders of the Gulf of Mexico, and occupies urban areas.

These insects can be easily differentiated from other species by larger eyes and the presence of larger hair on their mesosoma. Their diet includes dead caterpillars, honey, and floral nectar.

Furthermore, it is reported as a structural pest and needs to be stopped from entering inside buildings by sealing the cracks to restrict their undesired entries.

Acrobat ants

These scavenging ants are one of the common ants in Georgia that can feed on dead insects outdoors or inside the house. Their colonies contain 1000 to 10,000 workers and one queen.

It can be differentiated from a carpenter by a lighter, heart-shaped abdomen and darker head and thorax region. These notorious insects can cause damage to electrical wires by chewing insulation.

Additionally, they can be responsible for fire hazards and food contamination.

Moist wood galleries and window frames can draw these insects inside the home as they are ideal nesting spots.

These insects can form longer trails when going out foraging to collect food or locate a suitable spot for shifting their colonies to overcome the problem of depletion of resources.

Sugar ants

You can see a large number of swarming insects in the summer because it is their mating time. Accordingly, the foragers began to move into the surrounding areas for food.

Food requirements for the colony increase with the increased population because the growing larvae need a protein-rich diet to grow well.

They are one of the common pests in homes as these annoying creatures reach uncovered food trays on the kitchen counter and get inside bathrooms for moisture.

These insects are usually fond of sweetness and reach spilled juices, jam, and honey bottles, cake crumbs, and other sweet snacks like chocolates, creamy biscuits, and candies.

They need a high glucose content in their diet to remain active as their body cells need the energy to perform tasks of nests and forage in the territory.

Odorous house ants

These insects smell like rotting coconut and form smaller to moderate colonies comprising 200 to 10,000 members, depending on the environment and diet.

The rotten wood or timber logs and sidewalks’ cracks can become suitable spots for these insects to live inside and propagate their colonies.

The swarming insects reach higher on the ground surface when there is a time for nuptial flight, and a crowd of winged males and females appear on the sidewalks.

Furthermore, their colonies can have more than one queen to support quick reproduction and propagation to make up for the loss if a large number of these insects die accidentally.

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