Odorous house ants are brown, about 1/8-inch long, and may develop huge colonies containing numerous queens and thousands of workers. They derive their name from the rotten coconut odor they emit when crushed, and are difficult to control as they do not feed on ant baits. The key to controlling odorous house ants is to find the colonies and sub colonies and treat them directly. Regular inspections and professional service are necessary to locate and treat new colonies as they move in.
Odorous house ants are common throughout most areas of the US. These ants nest outdoors in landscaping, mulch, potted plants or piles of debris or beneath the loose bark on trees. They may establish nests indoors, in walls, beneath carpeting or in crawlspaces, attics, garages or a wide variety of other sites.
Tips for elimination of odorous house ant infestations:
Seal cracks, holes and access points in the home�s exterior.
Eliminate piles of lumber, bricks or debris that may serve as a nesting site for ants.
Keep landscape mulch less than 2 inches thick and at least 12 inches away from home foundations.
Keep tree and shrub branches trimmed to prevent them from touching the structure.
Make sure the sprinkler system does not spray directly onto the foundation.
Ant baits are usually ineffective with these ants; the key is to find the colonies and treat them directly. It is important to schedule regular professional inspections and service to locate and treat the colonies.