Argentine Ant

Category:

Actual Size: 2.2 to 2.8 mm

Characteristics: Light to very dark brown.

Legs: 6

Antennae: Yes

Wings: The reproductive males and females have wings.

Habitat: Builds nests near water sources. Outdoors, nests are located beneath boards, stones, or at the base of shrubs. Indoors, will build nests in wall voids and insulation.

Habits: 

  • A single colony of Argentine ants can contain up to several hundred thousand workers.
  • These ants are attracted to wet environments near food sources.
  • Argentine ants contaminate food and spread bacteria wherever they forage.

Argentine Ants in Central Florida

Argentine ants are considered a major household and garden pest in Florida. A single colony of Argentine ants can contain up to several hundred thousand workers. They reproduce quickly, creating supercolonies that displace native ants. Because they are attracted to water sources, Argentine ants build nests near homes in soil and under shrubs. A single colony of Argentine ants can contain up to several hundred thousand workers, making their elimination very difficult.

 Argentine Ant Habitats

Argentine ants will set up quarters anywhere close to food. Their nests are located in the ground, between boards and timber, in concrete wall cracks, and even in human belongings around the house. In temperate weather, Argentine ants are usually found outdoors next to sidewalks, around plants, or underneath stones or boards. When the weather gets too dry or too wet, Argentine ants may find their way into your home. Once inside, these ants will forage for food, feeding on meat, eggs, oils, fats, and sweet items like fruit.

Argentine Ant Behaviors, Threats or Dangers

Argentine ants are very aggressive and will bite, although their bite is not poisonous. They are well organized socially and particularly aggressive toward other native insect populations. When foraging, they leave trails of food behind to avoid revisiting the same food source twice. Argentine ants can cause damage to homes and structures as they invade homes in large numbers. If you suspect an Argentine ant infestation, it is recommended to contact a licensed ant exterminator.