Vaughan Pest Removal: The Difference Between Black Ants and Carpenter Ants

The Difference Between Black Ants and Carpenter Ants

Being able to tell the difference between black ants and carpenter ants will help you know how dangerous they are. Some ants are just looking for food and sugary sweets to take back to their colonies. Others will damage your beams and floors. Professionals who specialize in carpenter ant removal in Vaughan can take help you take action when necessary. Use this guide to determine which kind of ants you have. 


The largest ant in the colony is the queen, and the smallest is the worker. Black queen ants usually measure around 10mm, or about the size of a large grain of rice, with her workers being much smaller and thinner. Carpenter ant workers usually measure about 12mm, and their queens can be as large as 20mm. A carpenter queen may look to be about the size of a wasp or hornet. 


Black ants only come into your house looking for food. They do not build their nests inside your home. If you see the classic conga line of ants moving procedurally through your kitchen, they are likely picking up sugars, crumbs, and other morsels that have been left behind. They also like nectar and honeydew. 

Carpenter ants, on the other hand, eat small insects and are happy to build a nest inside your home. They will eat fruit flies, gnats, spiders, and sugary foods. Carpenter ants need a lot more protein than black ants. It may not be easy to get rid of all of their food sources by yourself. You may need a professional for carpenter ant removal in Vaughan


During mating season, both types of ants will grow wings. Carpenter ants will likely have a double set of wings. Their antennae will have ‘elbows’ or angled features. Carpenter ants also have three distinct sections in the body: head, thorax, and abdomen. You will also see their prominent mandibles with which they chew through wood.

Black ants do not have obvious antennae, and their bodies are not obviously sectioned. Their six legs are not as long and spindly as carpenter ants, and they do not have obvious mandibles on the front of their heads.


Black ants are either jet black or very dark brown. Carpenter ants can be red, brown, yellow, maroon, or black. The body of a carpenter ant is usually some combination of these colours. A black ant’s colouration is usually uniform. 


The only significant damage a black ant will cause is getting into your foodstuffs. If your sugar containers are not well sealed, they can get inside and cause you to have to replace your supply. They sometimes also get into cereal boxes, jellies, and garbage. Once they are removed you don’t have to worry very much. 

Carpenter ants can cause serious damage, though. They use their strong jaws to chew through wood beams, floors, and joists. If you see piles of sawdust at the base of your walls, it’s likely that there is a carpenter ant nest inside. They burrow through solid planks and leave rivulets of tunnels everywhere, weakening the structural integrity of the lumber. 

Call Truly Nolen for Carpenter Ant Removal in Vaughan

If you think you might have a carpenter ant problem and would like us to take a look, use our website to schedule an inspection today. We will assess how bad the problem is, remove the ants, seal any entry points, and recommend repairs or future preventative maintenance. 

We have the local experience and the tools necessary to be able to identify where the colony is nested and fully neutralize it. Protect your home and get back to regular life by relying on Truly Nolen.