Carpenter ants have powerful mandibles (jaws) for chewing wood. These jaws are capable of “pinching” you, if the insect was threatened/agitated. Having said that, carpenter ants aren’t aggressive and would not “bite” you as a matter of course. They also are not vectors for disease.
This is a common misconception. Carpenter ants don’t eat wood. They do, however, damage wood by chewing it, to clear the way for laying eggs and building nesting sites. They chew the wood to create tunnels (called “galleries”), and kick the damaged wood, which resembles sawdust (called “frass”) out of the nesting site. This frass is sometimes an early warning sign that there are carpenter ant colonies present.
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While homeowners will often see the ants in the kitchen or bath areas, the nests themselves are usually found in the damp wood of the structure…under windows and doors, in the roof sheathing, and the sidewall sheathing of the home.
Termites feed on cellulose, which is a main component of wood. It’s also found in other materials, like paper and even PVC pipe.
There are 3 major species of termites found in the US:
• Formosan Termites
• Drywood Termites
• Eastern Subterranean Termites
Here in the northeast, only the Eastern subterranean termite is present.
This species lives in the ground and feeds on the cellulose in homes, but never actually “infests” the structure. The termite drones simply feed on the cellulose, then return to the colony in the ground, and regurgitate the food for the termites in the colony. They then return to the feeding site to do it again.
They do not. The mother raccoon will stay and nurse her young for the first 20 weeks of life. The young will then fledge the nesting site and become independent, typically in late summer.
No! Raccoons are mostly “crepuscular”, meaning they are active from sundown until sun-up. But they can also be active during the day, if conditions dictate. Survival is the only steadfast rule, so if the animal hasn’t had its fill and the sun is up, then she must continue her work if she wants to survive. Sick animals will usually display visible behaviors, such as: the head lilting to one side, walking around in circles, foaming at the mouth and nose, falling down while walking, moving slowly and clumsily, or very aggressive behavior.
Besides rooting through your trash cans and feeding on your fruits and vegetables, raccoons can also cause structural damage to homes. If they are nesting in the attic, they will damage the insulation by tearing it up to form a nest. They will also defecate and urinate in the structure, posing a significant health hazard for the occupants. With their strength and dexterity, they are capable of tearing screens and louvers off roof and attic vents, and even tearing roof shingles off of homes.
Our pest control experts recommend that you always leave wild animal offspring right where you find them! You should never interrupt nature’s cycle. Even though you may feel like you need to help them, your interference will almost always do more harm than good. The mother is most likely nearby and may have stashed the offspring there to protect them from predators.
Unfortunately, there aren’t any agencies set up to help with injured wildlife in Massachusetts. Our pest control experts recommend that you call the state wildlife agency (MassWildlife) or visit them online for more information.
Although we don’t offer after hours service, we regularly check voice mails, so feel free to call us at any time. If we don’t answer, leave a message and we’ll get right back to you as soon as possible!