This ant gets its name from commonly locating its nest in
or under cracks in pavement. Pavement ants were introduced
from Europe by the early colonists. They are found in most
of the eastern half of the United States and in California
Workers monomorphic, about 1/16-1/8" (2.5-4 mm) long;
queens about 3/8" (8 mm) long. Body light brown to black
with paler legs and antennae. Head and thorax furrowed/grooved
with parallel lines. Antenna 12-segmented, with 3-segmented
club. Thorax with pair of small spines on upper back part,
profile unevenly rounded. Pedicel 2-segmented Stinger present.
can be distinguished from other ant swarmers by the presence
of fine furrows/grooves on their head and thorax, similar
to those of the workers.
(1) Harvester ants (Pogonomyrmex spp.) have underside of head
with a brush of long bristles (coarse hairs/setae). (2) Acrobat
ants (Crematogaster spp.) with pedicel attached to upper surface
of abdomen (gaster), gaster heart-shaped. (3) Other small
dark ants with only 1 node/segment in pedicel or if with 2
nodes, then thorax lacks spines on upper surface.
Very little work has been done on this ant. Colonies are moderately
large to large, averaging 3-4,000 ants and several queens.
Developmental time varies from 36 to 63 days. Winged reproductives
appear outside primarily in June and July, but may emerge
anytime inside including during the winter months. Workers
have been shown to be an intermediate host of the poultry
tapeworms Raillietina tetragona (Molin) and R. echinobothrida
Inside, pavement ants will occasionally nest in walls, in
insulation, and under floors. The most likely place is in
ground-level masonry walls of the foundation and especially
near some heat source in the winter. They often follow pipes
which come through slabs for access to upper floors of buildings.
these ants typically nest under stones, in cracks in pavement,
and next to buildings. They enter buildings through cracks
in the slab and walls, slab expansion joints, and the natural
openings of buildings. Although not aggressive, workers can
bite and sting.
ants feed on almost anything including insects, honeydew,
seeds, plant sap, and household foods such as meats, nuts,
cheese, honey, and bread, but show a preference for meats
and grease. They forage in trails, and for distances of up
to 30 feet (9 m).
Location of the nest(s) and its treatment with a residual
is ideal; try following ants back from the food source. Dust
in the voids of outside ground-floor walls, treatment of cracks
in the slab with a residual, and barrier treatment is the
control. The direct injection with an appropriately labeled
high-pressure aerosol (160 psi) into the entrance/exit opening
in the crack or expansion joint of a concrete floor is extremely
effective. Baiting may be necessary.