Ants are some of the most common insects you’ll see in South Carolina, especially if you spend much time outdoors.
While they’re helpful because they feed on pests, they can be annoying and annoying if they get into your house or yard.
Well, not all types of ants in South Carolina are entirely annoying; some are extremely adorable too.
With around 2,000 different species in the United States, it can be hard to know exactly what you’re dealing with when an ant colony invades your space.
This is why it’s helpful to learn more about their different types before attempting to deal with them yourself.
Let’s surge into the world of the different types of ants in South Carolina!
1. Acorn Ant
Temnothorax curvispinosus is a type of ant that can be found in South Carolina. They are typically black or brown and live primarily on the ground.
Acorn ants are one of the most common types of ants in South Carolina that are found around homes. This is because they prefer to nest near trees or shrubs.
Further, these insects feed on other insects and small animals, such as worms, dead animals, and sometimes even plants.
These ants can also sting but typically do not unless they feel threatened or if their nest is threatened. They reproduce by giving birth to living young.
Additionally, acorn ants cannot bite humans. Sometimes, when food is scarce for them, these ants may become pests for humans who may have food.
However, when food becomes plentiful again, these pests will then leave the area.
2. Dacetine Ant
Strumigenys apalachicolensis, or the dacetine ant, is an endemic species to the southeastern United States. It has been found in Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, and South Carolina.
These ants are nocturnal and nest near moist soil with high organic content near trees. They come second on this of the various types of ants in South Carolina.
Also, they will nest near rotting wood or trash piles. These ants prefer to be close to water or streams where they can prey on small aquatic insects.
These insects include mosquito larvae and adult water bugs which live close to the water surface. They reproduce by budding; the queens forage for food outside their nests and are not very aggressive.
3. Northern Twig-nesting Thief Ant
The Solenopsis picta is a species of ant that lives throughout the eastern and southern United States, from Maine to Texas.
They are commonly called Northern Twig-nesting Thief Ants because they live in trees and other places with twigs for nesting.
Equally important, these ants are third on this list of the types of ants in South Carolina. Workers forage for food and bring it back to the nest. The ants will attack if their nest or colony is threatened or disturbed.
4. Invasive Fire Ants
Invasive fire ants came from Argentina but have established themselves all over the U.S. These are especially in Texas, Florida, and parts of California.
Furthermore, fire ants can sting multiple times, injecting venom under the skin. These can be very painful and dangerous to those who are allergic to them.
These are types of ants in South Carolina that should be avoided when seen.
5. Pharaoh’s Ant
Pharaoh’s ants are one of the most common household pests of the types of ants in South Carolina. They are small and black, but you can tell them apart from other types of ants by their long, thin antennae.
Pharaoh’s ants will not form colonies or nests like other types of ants. However, they still produce a strong odor that is unpleasant to humans.
Moreso, these tiny insects will often invade kitchens or bathrooms and make a mess on sinks or countertops.
They typically do not pose any serious threats to humans, though they have been known to bite when disturbed.
If you have seen these ants around your house and want help getting rid of them, contact our pest control company today!
6. Thief Ant
Of the different types of ants in South Carolina, the Solenopsis molesta is a thief ant. Thief ants are one of the most common species in the world, with a distribution from North America to Japan and China.
The thief ant is commonly found south of the Mason-Dixon line and throughout most of the lower Southeast coast.
Moving on, Thief ants are small (1/8 inch) and have a dark brown coloration with no stripes on their body, making them hard to identify.
They reproduce by budding; males live for a day after mating, while females live longer. They like to feed off honeydew secreted by aphids and prefer nothing else to food.
7. Red Imported Fire Ant
Red imported fire ants are known for their painful stings and were first reported in the United States by scientists at the Port of New Orleans.
Compared to other types of ants in South Carolina, they have been called the world’s most invasive species.
This is owing to the fact that they are capable of living almost anywhere and have a voracious appetite for both plants and animals.
Red imported fire ants are shiny, reddish-brown to black, with a lighter-colored abdomen. The abdomen is usually distinctly darker than the head or thorax.
They measure between 5mm and 7mm long (1/4 inch), with workers ranging from 1mm to 3mm (.04 inches).
Workers have a single node on their thorax (dorsal area). A mature colony can number as many as 250,000 individual ants and produce over 200 million eggs annually.
8. False Honey Ant
The Prenolepis imparis (false honey ant) is a species of ant that is commonly found in the southeastern United States.
It is sometimes also known as the honey pot because it collects sweet substances from trees and other plants.
The false honey ants are about 3-4 mm long and have an orange head, brownish thorax, and red abdomen.
They feed on nectar from flowers, fruit juices from fruits such as oranges or figs, tree sap, decaying vegetable matter, and even other insects! They can live under logs or rocks or inside old tree stumps.
False honey ants, one of the very many types of ants in South Carolina, typically live in open areas with low vegetation.
9. Long-horned Amazon Ant
The long-horned Amazon is one of the few ants found in North America and can be found throughout the southeastern United States.
It is also known as a carpenter ant due to its ability to construct elaborate nests from wood fibers and other materials.
Like other types of ants in South Carolina, it feeds on honeydew – though this species prefers it fermented instead of fresh.
On the one hand, workers are usually light brown or orange with lighter brown heads and jaws. On the other hand, queens are similar but slightly larger and more yellowish-brown. Males are smaller than workers and have wings that they use to fertilize queens during mating flights.
These ants live mostly outdoors but will enter buildings when seeking food sources or nesting sites – making them an occasional pest inside homes.
10. Florida Harvester Ant
Florida harvester ants (Pogonomyrmex badius) are often found nesting under rocks, logs, and other such features.
These ants are considered to be one of the most successful ant species in North America. Also, they have distribution throughout the southeastern region of the United States.
They live close to moisture sources but have also been found at elevations exceeding 2,000 meters. This species has been used as a model organism for social behavior and physiology studies. This is mainly because they are relatively easy to study and maintain in captivity.
All in all, they are one of the different types of ants in South Carolina.
11. Forest Ant
Pheidole dentigula (forest ant) is not left out of this list of the types of ants in South Carolina. The Pheidole dentigula is a large reddish brown ant that is native to eastern Australia.
They are also known as the forest ant and can range from 2mm to 10mm in length, making them one of the larger ants found in Australia.
In addition, they build their nests on trees and soil banks and mainly feed on nectar, honeydew, decaying fruits, and other insects.
The female ants will search for food while the male ants stay home with the larvae and pupae. The males will also fight off intruders or approach other nests to steal eggs.
Going further, they reproduce by swarming and mating with winged males. If there is no winged male around, then some workers will become neotenous males and become reproductives without wings.
12. Field Crazy Ant
Nylanderia vividula, also known as the field crazy ant, is one of the most common types of ants in South Carolina.
It is often confused with Pheidole moerens, a species found throughout the southeastern United States. Field crazy ants are typically light brown or yellowish brown and have 6-segmented antennae.
Besides, they can be identified by their long legs and antennae that are longer than their body length. These ants generally nest outdoors under stones or logs.
However, they can nest indoors if there is an abundance of warmth and water present near where they nest.
13. Common Army Ant
On the list of the numerous types of ants in South Carolina is the Neivamyrmex opacithorax, also called the army ant.
They are found throughout the southern United States and northern Mexico. They build their nests underground, but they may be found on the surface during wet seasons.
The Neivamyrmex opacithorax is a social insect and typically lives in large colonies with millions of workers.
They make annual migrations from their original nest to establish new ones when food becomes scarce. When foraging for food, army ants form columns that can be as long as 100 meters.
Moreover, they survive by swarming. These are mainly their activities as social insects:
- Laying eggs.
- Collecting resources.
- Sending out scouts.
- Building a new colony.
- Fight off other creatures.
14. Black Legionary Ant
Black legionary ants are the most common type of ant in the southern US. They are also known as black pavement ants and usually nest under sidewalks or similar surfaces. Workers are 1/16th inch long with a brownish-black body, dark head, and thorax.
Coupled with that, black legionary ants have a strong bite, which can cause irritation to sensitive skin types. If you see these ants crawling around your home, you should call an exterminator immediately.
These types of ants in South Carolina can cause damage to structures such as wiring or insulation. They reproduce by fertilizing eggs laid by one queen; workers live for about 6 months.
15. Indian Ant
Myrmecina americana, also known as the Indian ant, is one of the types of ants in South Carolina. These ants are seen foraging on low vegetation, searching for food.
They are often mistaken for a type of leafhopper. This is because they have a flattened body resembling a leaf and antennae resembling a leaf’s veins.
Furthermore, the myrmecina americanas are small ants ranging from 2-3mm long to 1-2mm wide. They have an orange head with black mandibles and legs that may be either yellow or red.
They reproduce by giving birth and producing colonies that can house many queens who lay eggs. After mating, queens will fly away from their colony in order to start their own.
16. Little Black Ant
The Monomorium minimum is one of the most common types of ants in South Carolina and can be found almost anywhere.
These ants are black and measure 1/8 inch long. They are not aggressive and do not sting, but they will bite if provoked.
Monomorium minimum colonies are small and usually found close to food sources. Workers forage for food during the day and then return to their nests at night.
If a colony is disrupted or attacked, it produces alarm pheromones that cause other workers from nearby nests to join them in defense.
What’s more? Workers tend to aphids by stroking them with their antennae. They feed on sugars from honeydew produced by aphids. Queens produce eggs that turn into male or female offspring.
17. Argentine Ant
The Linepithema humile (argentine ant) is one of the most common ants in the United States and is also found throughout Europe.
These ants are so prevalent that they’re known as European Black Ants. They’re usually small and dark brown but can vary in size depending on the climate.
Proceeding, this species feeds on plant-based foods and will forage for food outside their colonies. The Linepithema humile is one of the few ants in South Carolina that does not produce a chemical repellant to prevent other insects from feeding on their colony.
Therefore, they often have issues with parasitic and predatory insects invading their colonies.
18. Cornfield Ant
Lasius neoniger, also known as the cornfield ant, is a small black ant with a yellowish band around its abdomen.
A common species found across the southern United States, Lasius neoniger lives mostly in fields and cultivated areas.
This type of ant feeds on dead insects and other tiny invertebrates that they find on the ground. Also, they can feed on plant material.
Moving on, these ants are social insects that live in colonies and share food among the colony members. They reproduce by laying eggs in late summer or early fall.
Their larvae develop within the colony until adulthood when they are kicked out of the nest to fend for themselves.
Lasius will sometimes enter homes or buildings but usually only when seeking shelter from rain or cold weather. These ants in South Carolina do not sting, but they have powerful jaws that they use to crush prey.
19. Ponerine Ant
The Hypoponera opacior (ponerine ant) is an ant found throughout the southeastern United States, including South Carolina.
These ants are typically black and brown but have much lighter colors, such as tan or yellow. Worker ants for this species are about 1/8 inch long, and queens can reach up to 1/4 inch long.
With that being said, their heads are elongated, and their antennae are 12 segments long. They feed on nectar from flowers and other insects, but they also feed on honeydew from aphids found on plants and trees.
For this reason, these types of ants in South Carolina help keep plant populations healthy by controlling pests like aphids.
20. Black Field Ant
Not left out from our list of the types of ants in South Carolina is Formica subsericea. These are black ants that can be found all over the world. A couple of their common names are black field ant and red ant.
These ants will gather food for themselves and their colony members and protect their nests from intruders.
Additionally, the queen is very important to the colony because she lays eggs. This type of ant prefers a warm climate, so they can be found in warmer areas in South Carolina, such as near the coast or along the Appalachian Mountains.
They reproduce by giving live birth instead of laying eggs. This species has two castes: worker ants and reproductive males and females.
21. Silky Ant
Formica podzolica, a silky or dark ant, is a species found throughout the southeastern United States. The Formica podzolica gets its name from the silky feel of its body hairs.
These types of ants in South Carolina are reddish-black in color and grow to be about 1/2 inch long.
Formica podzolica live in moist woodlands, where they build nests that are usually found under rocks or logs.
Also, they can be found on tree trunks or fallen logs. They sometimes will build their nests near other ants, which may be from different species.
They reproduce by laying eggs that hatch into nymphs; Formica podzolica often raid smaller ant colonies for food.
22. Filed Ant
Formica pallidefulva, or filed ants, are one of the most aggressive types of ants in South Carolina. Lewis David de Schweinitz first recorded these ants.
He discovered them while they were attacking his leg after he was accidentally sprayed with their pheromones.
Filed ants are generally most prevalent from July to October. They can be found throughout the southern United States and parts of Canada and Mexico.
They reproduce by a process called pleometrosis, which means they all live together and cannot survive alone.
Furthermore, filed ants usually nest in open fields but occasionally enter human homes. They are considered a major pest due to their painful bite.
Workers tend to reach about 1/4 inch long and have a black body with orange legs, mandibles, and a yellowish head.
The queen is significantly larger than her workers and can grow up to an inch long. The difference between male-filed ants and female-filed ants is that male-filed ants have wings while females do not.
Also, males look slightly different with more defined mandibles, while females tend to be smaller and more slender.
23. Smith Pyramid Ant
The Dorymyrmex smithi (smith pyramid ant) is a small, reddish brown ant that builds a pyramid-shaped nest from soil particles.
It can be found throughout the south and typically under rocks and logs. The ants often nest with other species, such as Pogonomyrmex badius (red harvester ants).
The colonies can contain up to 40 workers, who create trails through leaf litter and dead vegetation to find food sources.
These ants are considered predators due to their ability to catch many prey types to feed their colony. These types of ants in South Carolina reproduce by swarming and building new nests.
In addition, these ants have no stingers but can bite with powerful mandibles. Smith pyramid ants can potentially cause injury or death, including anaphylaxis. A swarm attack may occur when humans get too close to a colony.
24. Pyramid Ant
Pyramid ants are one of the most common types of ants in South Carolina. They live outdoors and are found under logs, rocks, and other similar objects on the ground. They feed mostly on dead insects, vegetable matter, honeydew, and nectar.
With that said, adult males have wings but rarely use them except to leave their nest to look for a queen during mating season.
Young males develop wings as they grow older but remain wingless most of their lives. Females have wings that are never used except during mating season or when they swarm in large numbers to make a new nest site.
This is common if their old nest is destroyed by fire, flood, or another natural disaster.
25. Acrobat Ant
Crematogaster lineolata is an ant that can be found in the Southeastern United States. The ant’s body is long and slender, ranging from 1.5 to 3 mm long. It has a reddish-brown head and thorax with a yellow-brown abdomen.
Moreso, they live mostly in moist or wet environments such as leaf litter, rotting logs, bogs, and swamps. They can also be found foraging on trees and other objects near water sources. They feed on small insects, mites, spiders, plant sap, and honeydew from aphids.
Crematogaster lineolata colonies often have multiple queens, which will produce winged males at certain intervals.
They do this during the year to establish new colonies through mating flights over water sources. This list of the types of ants in South Carolina is not complete without the Acrobat ant!
26. Mississippi Carpenter Ant
Carpenter ants are one of the most widespread types of ants in South Carolina. In fact, they can be found throughout the United States. They are known for their ability to infest homes, sheds, and other structures due to their large size.
Carpenter ants often have red or black bodies with pale yellow heads and thorax. These ants measure about 1/4 inch long when fully grown. As a result, carpenter ants are often confused with termites because they look similar.
Unlike termites, however, carpenter ants do not eat wood. Instead, they feed on both dead insects and live ones from other colonies, which they catch using powerful jaws.
27. Florida Carpenters Ant
The Florida carpenters ant is a species that is more prevalent on the east coast but can be found in some parts of South Carolina. Its Latin name translates to little flower ant, which reflects its coloration.
These ants are often confused with pavement ants because they both have black bodies and redheads and thoraxes, but their abdomens are different colors.
Going further, Florida carpenter ants have reddish-orange abdomens, while the pavement ants have black abdomens. The appearance of the two species also differs, as pavement ants have sparse hairs all over their body.
While Florida carpenters ants, which are types of ants in South Carolina, lack hair and have a shiny exoskeleton.
28. Reddish Carpenters Ant
Carpenters ants, which are equal types of ants in South Carolina, are reddish and can be found throughout the country.
They eat other insects, fungi, honeydew, and dead animals. They live in woodlands and forests with dead trees or logs.
Further, they make their nests inside the wood, which is why they are called carpenters ants. These ants are aggressive when provoked and attack other animals or people near their colony.
They do not give out a strong odor unless they have been crushed. Their bite feels like a bee sting to humans but is not as painful as a fire ant’s sting.
29. American Carpenter Ant
The Camponotus americanus (American carpenter ant) are large ants that can be found all over the United States.
They are a dark brown color and have two different-sized body sections. The head is small, and the abdomen is large, with three visible segments. These are types of ants in South Carolina.
Workers are about 1/8 inch long, and queens can reach up to 3/4 inch long. These ants like to nest in wood, trees, rocks, concrete, garbage piles, or wherever they find wet wood-based material.
They commonly enter houses when looking for food or water sources. Their nests are often found around window frames or doorways where there is an entry point into the home.
30. Asian Needle Ant
The Asian needle ant, also known as the red or Chinese needle ant, is a stinging insect native to East Asia. The Asian needle ant is one of the most common in the world and can be found on every continent except for Antarctica.
The Asian needle ant lives in colonies with different queens and has been known to aggressively attack humans who disturb them.
The Asian needle ants have long, thin antennae and very large jaws that they use to carry their prey back to their nest. Their mandibles are so large that they often cannot close them completely unless they hold them shut with their other legs.
We’ve still got some types of ants in South Carolina coming up in this list; read on!
31. Dark Rover Ant
This ant is a dark brown to black color with a shiny body. They are often seen running fast over the ground surface or vegetation. These ants are most active day and night but prefer to be active at dusk.
The worker ants can be found nesting under stones, logs, or other debris on the ground. Brachymyrmex patagonicus is often confused for Solenopsis xyloni (Fire ant) because they have similar body shapes and nest locations.
They reproduce by swarming, meaning many new queens will leave their original colony and mate with males from different colonies.
Queens will then establish new nests where workers will produce many eggs so that future queen ants can hatch and start new colonies.
Likewise, these are types of ants in South Carolina!
32. Flemmings Collared Ant
Aphaenogaster flemingi is also known as the flemmingis collared ant. This type of ant can be found throughout the eastern United States. They are usually seen on trees, shrubs, and other vegetation.
The size is about 1/8 inch long, with a dark brown head and body that is covered with light hair. They build nests by connecting small pieces of wood together to form a protective structure for their colony.
Aphaenogaster flemingi prefer moist environments and do not require contact with water for survival.
These types of ants in South Carolina are commonly considered beneficial insects because they prey on other insects, including termites and wood-boring beetles. This, in turn, means they protect plants from harm.
33. Funnel Ant
Aphaenogaster ashmeadi (commonly known as the funnel ant) is a species of ant that can be found in the southeastern United States.
These particular types of ants in South Carolina can be found digging nests underground. And they don’t require any soil to do so.
The ants will look for areas with loose dirt, such as sidewalks or driveways, where they will dig a nest and live.
Usually, the nest comprises one large tunnel with multiple side tunnels branching off it. This type of ant is considered an invasive species because they tend to outcompete other ants from being able to thrive in these environments.
They will also consume any insect that tries to enter their territory. This wraps up our list of the various types of ants in South Carolina!
Ants are an important part of many ecosystems and can be found virtually everywhere. One way to know if you have ants is to look for small piles on the ground.
There are many different types of ants in South Carolina, but here are some of the types that you may see.
There is no one type of ant that can only be found in one specific place or environment. Some ants prefer a humid or wet environment, while others live on trees and other plants.
For example, the acrobat ant lives mostly up high in trees, and a common species found near homes is the pavement ant.
Remember that some ants will be aggressive towards humans or pets if they feel threatened. So it’s important to take care when dealing with these types of ants in South Carolina if possible!