Odorous House Ants
Commonly called the sugar ant for their appetite on sugar substances. Their colonies are polydomous which means having multiple reproducing queens. They can be found in almost any habitat including houses and depending on the amount of food can spread quickly.
Possible the queens can last 8 months or longer and workers only a few months while the males only a week. They are a very hearty ant that while being injured can continue to contribute to the colony. Queens can live without food and water for two month and are very resistant to cold and high temperatures.
The smaller colonies can have just one queen but larger colonies that are in the thousands have multiple queens and each queen laying eggs incubates about 11-26 days and larval stage is 13-29 days. Having multiple colonies depend on multiple food sources. Spring and Summer when food is abundant they will form most nesting and multiple nesting sites to insure survivability. In winter they return to single nest site and when weather warms they return back to other nesting sites originally where they found food about March through October in the Northwest working day and night.
Nest can be found anywhere indoors where the desired temperature is including appliances, insulation, roofing and crawl spaces. The can move the colony when desired because of food sources or stress this includes certain pesticide applications which can spread the problems to other areas. Their food sources can include collecting honey dew, other insect to animal food and childrens toothpaste.
These ants can be hard to control and early detection is key to control them and the longer people wait the larger the nest grows and by mid summer numbers reach tens of thousands from a single colony.