Termite Swarms vs. Ant Swarms
Termites are rarely seen because they spend most of their lives underground in elaborate colonies or in wood. This makes identifying termites very difficult. The most common termite species that you will encounter in or New York and New Jersey is the Eastern Subterranean Termite. Unfortunately this species is also the most destructive. They get their name because they live underground in large colonies beneath a home. These termites are small in size with an oval shape, only about 1/8″ long and cream to brown in color. They may swarm inside of your home in the spring time when they search for a mate to begin new colonies. Note that absence of a termite swarm does not mean that termites are not present.
Carpenter ants swarm in the spring, although they can be spotted at any time of the year. They are very large, black ants. Finding sawdust or excavated wood with insect parts in it or discovering hollowed out wood is a sign that carpenter ants may be present. Carpenter ants are best identified by a pest professional and one should definitely be called in to address an infestation from any wood destroying insect. Unlike termites, carpenter ants do not actually eat wood. They bore holes through wood to build their nests and brood their larva. Do you think you could differentiate identifying termites and ants in your home?