Odorous House Ants


What are odorous house ants?

To the naked eye, odorous house ants have a very generic appearance. They are a small species with workers growing from between 1/16 and 1/8 of an inch in length and are a black or brown color. Their most distinctive characteristic and how these ants are most often identified is the foul-smelling odor they emit after being crushed. The odor is often compared to a rotting coconut smell. As their name suggests they are common invaders of homes and other structures.

Why do I have a problem with odorous house ants?

Odorous house ants are living in your Washington yard or home because it is providing them with easy access to sources of food and water. These ants will eat a wide variety of foods but prefer foods that are high in sugar. They are very fond of honeydew, a sweet, sticky liquid produced by aphids and other garden pests. Their fondness for sweets is why they are also referred to as “sugar ants.”

Odorous house ants forage for food in flower and vegetable gardens, open containers of trash, compost bins, and outdoor eating areas. These ants often find their way inside homes either while foraging for food or while trying to escape harsh weather, especially during periods of rain.

Where do odorous house ants nest?

In the Pacific Northwest, odorous house ants create nests in both indoor and outdoor locations. Outside, they nest in soil under mulch, fallen trees, woodpiles, or rock piles. Inside, they prefer to create nests near areas with moisture, in wall voids near hot water pipes or sinks, inside heaters, and in crawl spaces. They also like to place their nests in pieces of wood that were previously damaged by termites or other wood-damaging insects.

Are odorous house ants dangerous?

Odorous house ants are considered nuisance ants. They invade in large numbers, are annoying to deal with, and will contaminate food. However, they pose no significant health risks to people or damage to property. It is important to note that their presence in or around your home may be an indicator of a moisture problem that should be addressed.

How do I get rid of odorous house ants?

For homeowners looking to eliminate odorous house ants from their home or property, contact the experienced professionals at Prosite. At Prosite, we offer comprehensive pest control services that include a thorough inspection.

When you contact us, we’ll begin by conducting a thorough inspection of your property. We’ll also locate entry points and determine what conditions in or around your structure are attracting odorous house ants. Upon completion of our inspection, we’ll discuss our findings and recommend a treatment plan to get rid of the odorous house ants.

If you’re interested in learning more about our effective ant control services, please contact Prosite today.

How do I prevent problems with odorous house ants?

At Prosite, we recommend implementing the following ant prevention tips to keep odorous house ants out of your Washington home:

  • Seal cracks and crevices found in your home’s foundation, exterior walls, and spaces found around utilities (pipes, wire, and ducts).
  • Use a dehumidifier to keep basements dry.
  • Fix leaking pipes and fixtures.
  • Maintain gutters and keep them free of clogs.
  • Trim tree branches back away from your home’s exterior walls.
  • If possible, place garden areas a distance from the outside of your home.
  • Place woodpiles up off of the ground and a distance away from your home.
  • Ventilate crawl spaces.
  • Do not leave dirty dishes in the sink overnight or for any length of time.
  • Store food in the refrigerator or in air-tight containers.
  • Empty trash cans often.
  • Vacuum your home’s floors often.
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