Black ants are one of the most common nuisance pests that you may find wandering in your home. You’ll often see them lined up in a trail as they go in and out of their ant nests in search of food and water. Compared to other household insects, spotting ants aren’t always a cause for concern and they’re usually harmless as long as they don’t view you as a threat to their entire colony.
So how common is it for black house ants to bite people? When black house ants bite, they do it to protect their nests from threats and keep intruders away. They aren’t aggressive and they won’t bite people for no reason. A carpenter ant bite is not as painful and dangerous since they don’t release any poisonous venom. However, they do let out formic acid which can cause slight irritation or a burning sensation to the skin.
Learn More: How To Get Rid of Black Ants Inside The House
Ants may be small but they have a set of strong mandibles that they use to pick up and carry their food, and to create tunnels or galleries in wood to build their nesting places. These mandibles are also what you feel when you notice a tiny ant on your skin. Ants are said to have incredible jaw strength and they can give a powerful bite that can penetrate the human skin.
When it comes to black house ants, both the carpenter ant and little black ant may carry some degree of bite risks to people. Here’s an overview on how to distinguish between the two black ants and their bites:
|Black carpenter ant||Little black ant (Monomorium minimum)|
|What they look like||They’re the most common species of ants that usually appear black or brown with reddish legs. Minor workers of this ant species can be 1/4 inch in length while major workers measure about 1/2 inch long. They have an evenly smoothed thorax with bent antennae on their head. Their jaws or mandibles are located at the front, and behind the mandibles is their mouth which they use to eat their food.||Unlike carpenter ants that are identified by their big bodies, these little black ants are small and usually appear 1/16 inch in length. They also have an antenna on their head with unevenly rounded bodies and thorax with no spines.|
|How common are their bites||Carpenter ants only bite when they’re provoked. You’re most likely to get an ant bite when you accidentally come across their satellite nests and the black ants come to swarm to defend their home. When you see a carpenter ant nest in your home, it’s best to avoid them and contact a pest control professional to eliminate the risk of carpenter ant bites.||While they also have a set of mandibles, little black ants don’t pose bite dangers to humans. They may sting a little but their bites aren’t as noticeable as the bite from a big black carpenter ant.|
|What are the signs of their bite||When their mandibles come into contact with human skin, they can release a small amount of formic acid which can cause a minor burning or painful stings. It can be itchy but you shouldn’t scratch them to avoid getting an infection. Other signs of carpenter ant bite can include swelling, redness, and visible marks.||Due to their small size, the bite from a little black ant will not cause an obvious reaction on humans. They may elicit a temporary itchy sensation with which a quick scratch can help soothe the discomfort.|
|Is their ant bite dangerous||Their formic acid isn’t at all venomous or toxic so it will rarely cause any health risk or severe allergic reaction.||No, little black ant bites are not dangerous. They’re not harmful social insects and are only a nuisance to the home.|
The good thing about most carpenter ant bites is that they can be easily remedied at home. With immediate first aid treatment, they can go away and heal fully within several days of the bite incident. Here are some tips for when you need to treat a carpenter ant bite:
Allergic reactions from a black ant bite are very rare but when they happen, it’s important to seek immediate medical help. Some signs of allergic reaction from an ant bite can be difficulty breathing, hives on the skin, increased heart rate, flu-like symptoms, or pale skin.
Ants bite for one main reason: to defend their ant colony. Like most insects and pests, if ants detect threats to their indoor nests, they will become defensive and put their mandibles to use to bite and protect themselves and their colonies. Although they’re also predatory in nature, black ants aren’t aggressive and they usually don’t view humans as their prey. So as long as you steer clear of their nest location and avoid disturbing them, you’re safe from their bites.
There are over a thousand common ant species in the world and there are specific types that are known to have an alarming bite. Here’s how you can identify other ants and their bite symptoms:
The best way to avoid getting an ant bite is to carefully navigate areas where you suspect there might be ant activity. You should also avoid disturbing their ant trail and don’t touch or swipe them away with your hands. Likewise, you should also be proactive in keeping your house clean and less attractive for carpenter ants. Here are some tips to prevent a black ant infestation in your home:
Bites from carpenter ants don’t pose any serious health risks but its symptoms can still be uncomfortable. The only way to assure that your family is safe from black ant bites is to eliminate their infestation before they get worse.
At Positive Pest Management, our team of pest control experts strive to find and eliminate the source of your ant problem as efficiently as possible. We’re committed to providing professional pest control services including inspection and extermination to ensure a safe and pest-free environment. Contact us today to get a free quote or know about our ant infestation services.