Introduction: The black carpenter antCamponotus pennsylvanicus(DeGreer) is a native species and the common species in the east.Camponotus modocWheeler is the common western species. These ants get their common name from their habit of hollowing out galleries in pieces of wood for nesting purposes.
Recognition: Workers polymorphic large (1/8"-1/2" or 3.5-13 mm) but vary greatly in sizes queens about 1/2"-5/8" (13-17 mm) long. Color black combinations of red and black or completely red or brown. Antenna 12-segmented without a club.Thoraxlacks spines profile evenly rounded on upper side. Pedicel 1-segmented. Gaster with anal opening round surrounded by circlet of hairs. Stinger absent Workers capable of emitting a strong formic acid odor.
Habits: Most carpenter ant species establish their first nest in decayed wood and later expand or enlarge this into sound wood. Inside nests are located in wood (preferably softened by fungus rot) in insulation and/or in wall voids. Workers are a nuisance when out searching for food but are destructive to timbers utilized for nesting activities. Outside nests are typically located in rotting fence posts stumps old firewood dead portions of standing trees and under stones or fallen logs.