Common Black Ant Garden Ant – lasius niger

Black Ant

Adult size (approx.): 0.2 - 0.3cm


Ants form nests in gardens, paving, foundations of buildings and even on the inside of buildings. There is one Queen per nest with multiple workers.  The workers are very active foraging on a wide variety of foods including sweet substances, seeds and Insect secretion.  Nests can survive for many years but young Queens can leave the nest as Flying Ants to start new nests each year.



Egg – Larvae – Pupae - Adult


Eggs: laid by the Queen
Larvae: legless Grubs fed by the workers.  They are fully grown in 3 weeks.
Pupae: Develop in 2 weeks, guarded by the workers.
Adults: Workers are dark brown/black in colour and 3-5mm in length.  Queens are winged living for several years, approx 12mm in length.



Foraging workers are found to be more nuisance than a risk.  Sexual forms (Flying Ants) emerge in large numbers close to or inside houses normally around the summer season.


Control of Ants is normally necessary when they become a nuisance inside buildings.  A residual spray treatment would take place to the perimeter of the building externally and then internally where necessary.  Proofing can be undertaken with the use of sealants.  Baiting can also take place with the use of gel baits.

Pharaohs Ant – monomorium pharaonis

Pharaohs Ant

Adult size (approx.): 0.2cm


The Pharaohs Ant is a tropical species found only in heated buildings in Britain.  They are very small, mobile and active at all times of day.  Nests are large and unstructured, found normally in cavities of buildings and ducting.  The nest has many Queens.  The workers can be found in trails from food sources leading back to the nest.  They forage on a wide range of foods and need access to water.  Infestations spread by budding.  This is when groups of workers and sometimes Queens leave the main nesting site to form satellite colonies.



Egg – Larvae – Pupae - Adult
Eggs: laid by the Queen within the nest, hatching 1-3 weeks later
Larvae: legless Grubs fed by the workers, fully grown 3-4 weeks later
Pupae: develop in approx 2 weeks, guarded by the workers in the nest
Adult: workers are wingless approx 2mm in length with a white/yellowish colouring.  Queens have wings and normally stay in the nest.  They have a minimum development temperature of 18 degrees centigrade and an optimum development temperature of 30 degrees centigrade.



The Pharaohs Ant has been known to carry disease organisms.  Due to their small size, they can penetrate packaging of foods and sterile materials, causing contamination.  This also means they can spread very quickly throughout a building creating satellite nests, possibly transferring to neighbouring buildings.


Successful control is only by baiting.  Residual spray treatments may cause problems such as spreading.  A slow acting poison is used which causes disruption to their larval development, preventing them to become fully grown.

Areas Covered for Ant Control


Pest Control Essex, London & Kent

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