Carpenter Ant


Actual Size: ⅝”

Characteristics: Large; red, black or a combination of both.

Legs: 6

Antennae: Yes

Wings: Carpenter ant swarmers have two sets of wings.

Habitat: Prefer moist, damp wood, constructing their nests in hollow trees, logs, posts, landscaping timbers, and wood used in homes and other structures.


  • Do not actually eat wood, but tunnel through to create passages for nesting.
  • Colonies can have 50,000 to 100,000 workers, and they can also produce satellite colonies.
  • Heavy carpenter ant activity in the home may indicate a moisture issue within the structure.

Carpenter Ants in Baton Rouge

Sometimes confused with termites, carpenter ants are wood-destroying insects. In Louisiana, these large ants tunnel through support beams and make their way throughout entire buildings, sometimes causing entire walls to disintegrate. Carpenter ants can reduce solid structures to hollow shells, but unlike termites, they don’t eat and digest wood. They simply tunnel and nest through the wood, excavating cavities to raise their young. Signs of these excavations, such as small sawdust piles at ground level or on window sills, can signal an infestation.

Carpenter Ant Habitat

Outside, carpenter ants prefer moist wood, building nests in rotting tree stumps, firewood, and wood fencing. Indoors, they infest building materials such as wood or foam insulation and can occupy cavities like those found in hollow doors or window frames. Although carpenter ants are often found outdoors, they typically make their way inside a building through cracks in foundations, or even by climbing through plumbing or electrical openings into the home.

Carpenter Ant Behaviors, Threats or Dangers

Carpenter ants rarely bite and are not generally thought of as dangerous. The real threat carpenter ants pose, is their ability to damage and weaken the structural integrity of homes and structures. Carpenter ants nest in large colonies, making their homes inside of wood. When they decide to make your home their home, significant structural damage can result, and all wood types are at risk. While carpenter ants are not as dangerous to your home as termites, over a period of a few years they can cause serious damage, especially if the colony grows in size. If a carpenter ant infestation is suspected, it is best to contact a professional ant exterminator.

Don’t wait until your home is overrun by ants. Contact Dugas Pest Control today!