Ant Control and Identification
Ant identification and termite identification are similar with a few small differences outlined below.
Factors to identifying common household ants
Ants are close relatives of bees and wasps. They are common insects that are effortlessly identified, especially in their common wingless adult forms, identified as workers. However, winged forms of ant, abandon the nest in large numbers in warm conditions to mate and create new colonies. In many cases they are mistaken for winged termites, who also leave the nest to mate.
Ants and termites can be distinguished by the following three primary characteristics:
- An ants body is constricted, therefore giving the appearance of a slim waist. However, the body of a termite is not constricted.
- The ant rear wings are small compared to its front wings; the termites front and hind wings are on the same size. (Soon there after their flights, both ants and termites lose their wings, so wings may well not at all times be present.)
- Winged female and worker ant possess elbowed antennae; the termite’s antennae aren’t elbowed.
Ants go through complete metamorphosis, passing through egg, larval, pupal, and adult phases. Larvae are immobile and wormlike and never look like adults. Ants, like several hymenopterans, are social insects. Queens carry out the reproductive functions of the colony and are bigger than other ant; they lay eggs and at times take part in the feeding and grooming of larvae. Female workers, that happen to be sterile, collect food, feed and look after the larvae, build tunnels, and guard the colony; these workers make up the majority of the colony. Males do not engage in colony activities; their only function is to mate with the queens. Male ants are fed and cared for by worker ants; due to being few in number when compared to the females.