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ODOROUS HOUSE ANTS

INTRODUCTION: This ant gets its name from the strong, rotten coconut-like odor given off when crushed. This native species is found throughout the United States. 

RECOGNITION: Workers monomorphic, about 1/16-1/8” long. Body is brown to black. Stinger is absent.

HABITS: Inside: these ants usually construct their nest near a moisture source such as in wall voids especially around hot water pipes and heaters, in bath traps, in crevices around sinks, cupboards, etc. Prefer to eat sweets but also eat foods with high protein.

Outside: they are often found in the nest of larger ants, under stacks of wood, bricks and stone. They are extremely fond of honeydew and attend such honeydew-excreting insects as aphids, scale insects mealybugs, etc. They tend to move indoors when their honeydew supply is reduced, such as during rainy weather or in the fall. Like most ants, they follow guidelines or edges.

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Ants_Odorous_02.png BIOLOGY: Colonies are usually about 2,000 to 10,000 ants, but can be up to 100,000 ants. There are many queens in a colony. Development time (egg to adult) is 34-83 days, varying with temperature during the summer months, and up to 6-7 months in the winter. Colonies typically produce 4-5 generations a year and tend to move their nest every three months or so, often in response to rain.

 

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