Pharaoh Ant


Actual Size: 1/16″

Characteristics: Pharaoh ants are very small, and are typically light yellow to red, with black markings on the abdomen.


  • Pharaoh ants rely on artificial heating in buildings to survive. Infestations commonly occur in food service areas.
  • Will nest in any well-protected and hidden areas throughout a structure. Can also nest outdoors in lawns or gardens.
  • Eat all types of food, but especially sweets. Will also eat other insects.
  • Grows from egg to adult in about 45 days. Females live as long as 39 weeks and can lay about 400 eggs. Workers only live up to 10 weeks.
  • One of the most persistent and difficult ants to control. Very large colonies with up to several million workers and thousands of queens.


Pharaoh ants are known for being one of the smaller species of ants, as they only grow to be about ⅛ of an inch. They are most often a pale yellow color and their colonies tend to be extremely large, with worker ant numbers reaching the thousands. When nests or colonies are disturbed, members will branch out to form new colonies in a process called budding. Due to the large size of their colonies, controlling pharaoh ants can be extremely difficult.

Pharaoh Ant Habitat

Pharaoh ants are not known to be picky when it comes to finding a spot to nest in. They do prefer being indoors, especially in commercial buildings with artificial heating. For this reason they are commonly found in establishments with food, such as hotels, grocery stores, and hospitals. They can often be found in wall voids, behind baseboards, and under floorboards. If they are outdoors, they are typically found in shaded areas.

Behaviors of Pharaoh Ants

Pharaoh ant colonies can grow rapidly, especially when they go unnoticed. One of the biggest threats of pharaoh ants is the fact that they are able to spread disease and contaminate anything they touch, which makes their presence especially troubling in hospitals and food service industries. Two of the disease pathogens they’ve been known to carry are salmonella and Streptococcus pyogenes. For this reason and more, it’s imperative to prevent these ants from infesting buildings.

What You Can Do About Ants

Can you get rid of ants yourself? Most do-it-yourself ant control products only kill the ants you see, not the colonies themselves. Also, home remedies don’t account for the fact that different kinds of ant infestations require different treatments. The best you can do is to eliminate any potential food sources by keeping your home or business clean. However, if you’re still having issues, you’ll need to contact a pest control specialist like Russell’s Pest Control to seek out and destroy nests to help prevent these pests from returning.

Ant Control Solutions

When you schedule ant control service with Russell’s Pest Control , your technician will:

  • Determine the type of ant
  • Conduct a full property inspection that includes your yard, attached & detached structures, driveway and home
  • Directly treat all nests and trails on the outside
  • Install ant stations to monitor activity
  • Discreetly apply ant baits for interior nests
  • Seal small common entry points if they are contributing to the infestation
  • Create a full report describing the treatment and how you can protect your home from further infestations

Don’t wait until your home is overrun by ants. Contact Russell’s Pest Control today!