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Small Honey Ants In Virginia

Small Honey Ants

Common Features

Introduction to the Small Honey Ant

Small Honey Ants are known as Prenolepis imparis and can be found throughout North America, including Virginia. These ants are considered very important for the habitat. They get their name because they collect and store honeydew secreted by aphids while protecting the aphids from other predators, thus how they got their name. This ant species is also called the “winter ant,” because they create extensive and intricate tunnels that protect them from outside elements. Because of this, they can survive in multiple climates and even remain active in the cold.

Small Honey Ant Behavior And Habitat

Small Honey Ants are also called “winter ants,” because they stay active during the winter. They are perfectly suited to survive the rapidly changing climate here in Virginia. They store and eat honeydew, but also like foraging for sugary food in your house, meats, and breads. They are one of the only ant species in Virginia that has a relationship with the honeydew-producing aphids, as they collect the honeydew in exchange for protection. Their nests are usually located in damp soil where it’s shady. When they construct nests, they leave small mounds of soil outside at the entrance. Internally, the nest has large and intricate tunnels that protect them from colder climates. Like other ant species, they have a queen, workers, and winged reproductive individuals. Unlike other ant species, these ants have relatively small colonies numbering between 1,000 – 10,000.

Small Honey Ant Dangers And Damage

Small Honey Ants are not dangerous and are merely a nuisance pest. They regularly forage indoors and entire colonies have been found in potted plants. At most, they will damage potted plants and invade pantries as they search for sweets, meats, and fruit. They can contaminate the food in your house and because their colonies are small, it can be hard to find the source. If you think you have Small Honey Ants, contact a pest control company.

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