The Mighty Carpenter Ant!

The Mighty Carpenter Ant!

23 February, 2017

Our brackets are fixed directly to the foundation with a clearance within plus or minus 1 inch of your exterior cladding. This is one of the main reasons that can help avoid situations like the one you are going to read about right now!

No matter how perfect your house seems to be, come renovation time the truth can be an entirely different matter.

A contractor was hired to replace a patio door, but when he pulled it from its frame, he noticed that the wood underneath was blackened and he came to the conclusion that it was rotten. Trying to ascertain the extent of the damage, he lightly scraped the wood away and discovered the presence of a tiny, but highly destructive insect; the mighty carpenter ant.

Their nests are built, and they are hard at work; the tunnels they have dug are visible to the naked eye and seem to stretch across the entire length of the floor structure. Small piles of discarded sawdust between the wooden beams show where the ants have been excavating.

The contractor wastes no time calling an exterminator, but the job suddenly became a lot larger than anticipated.

To rid the house of its ant infestation, simply spraying an insecticide would not be sufficient. All the rotten wood from the house frame would have to be removed before undertaking any repair.
This picture clearly illustrates the weakened state of the frame after the wood has been removed.

Once finished, the frame is barely holding up and the kitchen floor could easily have collapsed had the carpenter ants not been stopped…

The exterminator manages to follow the tunnels to get rid of all the ants. On this picture, you can see the damage to the frame caused by their presence.
It’s a common misconception that this kind of problem only occurs in older structures. Unfortunately, what happened to this homeowner could have happened to anyone. The home mentioned above was only a decade old!
In order to act quickly, it’s worth knowing the warning signs of a carpenter ant infestation in your home.

How do you detect a Carpenter Ant Infestation?

– Regularly inspect damp areas of your home, especially where the wooden frame is exposed to it, such as doors, windows, wood in contact with the ground, under sinks and washbasins etc.
– Constant vigilance! The presence of ants in your home may indicate an infestation! Following their path is often the best way to find their colony.
– As they dig, they often make a dry rustling sound and as they are much more active at night; it will be easier for you to hear it.
(inspiration, source : Gouvernement du Canada)

How to Recognize Carpenter Ants

Here in Canada there are mainly two species of carpenter ants: often mistaken for termites. The red- and the black carpenter ants are two species that can damage your home. The red carpenter ant has a thin waist, arched antennae and is black with red hues, whereas the black carpenter can be recognized by the dull black color of the head and body and by whitish or yellowish hairs on the abdomen.

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