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Ghost Ant

Commonly referred to as "sugar ant"
(Tapinoma melanocephalum)

Appearance

Ghost ants have a dark head and thorax, with a pale abdomen and legs.

Size

Less than 1/16-inch long.

Behavior

Ghost ants have the habit of running rapidly and erratically around when disturbed. They will trail in a line, and can often be seen carrying their offspring to a new nesting location. They are small enough to enter homes through the tiniest holes in caulking, or cracks in foundations. Once inside your home, they can be seen in kitchens and bathrooms trailing to and from the sinks (searching for moisture). Ghost ants prefer to feed on honeydew and other insects, but once inside they will eat anything sweet (hence the commonly referred to name of “sugar ant”).

Habitat

The Ghost ant is a nuisance ant that is common in central and southern South Florida. Known as a "tramp" ant, it easily nests in potted plants and other moist areas. It is particularly fond of nesting inside the aluminum supports around screen porches. Once inside your home, it will nest in wall voids or spaces between cabinetry and baseboards. Nests contain multiple queens and multiple subcolonies.

Interesting Facts

Ghost ants are known as "ghosts" because when they run around on light surfaces their transparent abdomens and legs seem to vanish; leaving just the dark head and thorax visible. On darker surfaces, all you see are pale patches moving about.

Control

Do you live in South Florida and think that this ant may be invading your home? Hulett Environmental Services offers specialty pest control treatments designed to control and eliminate this pest!

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