Black Ant (Lasius niger)
Black ants are commonly found throughout the UK, and although they nest outdoors, they are often found inside houses, where they cause a nuisance rather than a health risk. Ants mate on the wing, so the "flying ants" that you see in late summer are either males or immature queens.
Where do they come from?
You will find ants nests in dry earth around plant roots, with sandy soil in particular attracting colonies. Nests are increasingly being found inside the walls of properties (cavity walls, for example). One a colony develops it can be difficult to get rid of.
Why do ants come indoors?
The ants found indoors are usually worker ants, which are foraging for food for the queen and the grubs. They have found that buildings inhabited by humans are a good source of food, particularly sweet or sugary items.
Do black ants just live on human food?
No, the worker ants are scavengers and collect seeds, nectar, even dead insects to take back to the nest. They also prey on greenfly, black fly and other small insects, so they can do the gardener some good.
Do black ants do any harm?
Although it is unpleasant and a nuisance to find a large number of them in your home, black ants do not transmit any serious diseases. However, you should remember as well that the ants may have travelled through unpleasant or dirty places during their foraging and before entering your home. This means that they can taint any food, making it unsuitable to eat. Do not leave food uncovered if accessible to ants, but if they have contaminated food, dispose of in the dustbin (wrapped first to prevent it smelling in the warmer weather).
Please note: that there are other common pest species of Ants including Pharaoh Ants.
Donkill Pest Solutions deal with all Ant problems, so if you would like a free survey please contact us on
0843 523 0537 or 07443476749
(Free site surveys are subject to availability and are not to identify if you have a infestation in the first place (this can be mostly be done over the telephone))