Odorous House Ant (Tapinoma sessile)
Description of Workers: Small workers, around 1/16-inch to 1/8-inch (2-3 mm); dark brown to black. Bitter odor when crushed - said to smell like rotten coconuts.
Most frequent structure invading ant in Nebraska; nests in a wide variety of places outdoors and inside. These ants commonly construct shallow nests in soil underneath objects, such as stones, patio blocks and debris. Inside, they prefer areas with moisture such as around hot water pipes and heaters. Odorous house ants have multiple queens. The ants forage when temperatures are cool, even down to 50 degrees Fahrenheit. Strongly trailing ant; it tends aphids for honeydew and prefers sweets in kitchens.
Management includes corrective conducive conditions; locating and treating colonies which may include drench treatments, dusts in wall voids or using baits; depending on the colony location.
View & Print Free Ant Identification Keys
This resource was updated November 2015 by Soni Cochran, Extension Associate
Credits: Ant illustrations were developed by Vicki Jedlicka, Nebraska Extension in Lancaster County
Nebraska Extension in Lancaster County is your on-line educational resource. The information on this Web site is valid for residents of southeastern Nebraska. It may or may not apply in your area. If you live outside southeastern Nebraska, visit your local Extension office