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Ghost Ants… Sounds scary! Find Out How to Get Rid of Them?

Ghost Ants… Sounds scary! Find Out How to Get Rid of Them?

If you wish to terminate ghost-ants, you have come to the correct place. In this article you will get to know about:

  • Who are these ghost-ants and how do they look?
  • Are they harmful?
  • How would you get rid of them?
  • Preventive advice regarding ghost ants.

The Guidelines in this Page:

  • Who are these Ghost Ants?
  • How is Their Appearance?
  • How Harmful are They to you?
  • Steps to Get Rid of Ghost Ants
  • Precautionary Advices for Ghost Ant Removal
  • Finally

Rest assured, these are not ghosts but are ordinary ants. They get the name because of their physical features. They are tiny in nature and whitish or yellowish in appearance.

They operate in the same way as the other ants do and do come in large numbers. The term “ghost” is because of the dark-colored cranium and a nearly colorless translucent body with legs, which gives them the advantage to get camouflaged in a risky natural environment.

They infest in indoors as well as outdoors for the search of food. The translucent color of their bodies makes them difficult to identify, especially at the early stage of infiltration.

Who are These Ghost Ants?

Their black or dark brown head along with a whitish or yellowish body structure explains their name as ghost ants. Being small in size (about 1.3 to 1.5 mm); it is difficult to spot them individually, in groups and even when they follow a trail. Ghost ants are also known as tramp ants and are majorly found in the tropical and subtropical latitudes as Africa and Central America.

Generally, you get to see ghost ants in warmer climates in the USA, such as in Hawaii and Florida. Unlike other ant nests, ghost ants have numerous queens and more than ten thousand working ants. Eventually, a single colony can break into many more subcolonies with queens and working ants.

They make nests both indoors and outdoors. They don’t dig to build their nests inside the earth and make molds of soil or an ant hill. Instead, they make nests in places that are readily available. It could be under the dead leaves, underneath wooden chunks or in rotten materials outside your house.

This video gives an idea of how they move in and around your house:

Ghost ants easily enter your house because of their tiny size. They infiltrate through minute gaps, little holes, and fractures. They prefer building their nests behind walls, in and under flower pots, underneath objects which are placed on the ground, small cracks or gaps inside your house, even below your basin. All they look for is either a dampness or a water source.

How is Their Appearance?

They have a black or dark brown head and whitish or yellowish translucent body and legs. Because of the translucent color, they tend to look even smaller than their actual size. Generally, they are 1.3 to 1.5 mm in length.

How Harmful are They to you?

They don’t cause you any health hazards and hence are not dangerous. They also don’t bite or sting. One thing is to be concerned, if you ignore them they will spread and expand their colonies in no time. They have multiple numbers of queens in a single nest with numerous working ants.

A huge intrusion of ghost ants at your home will first attack your kitchen and mainly on the sweet foodstuffs you have in it. They are a nuisance to watch, particularly on your walls. Though they are not that foul-smelling as the odorous house ants when crushed they release a mild coconut-like smell.

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Steps to Get Rid of Ghost Ants

The easiest step to get rid of any species of ants is to call a professional insect exterminator. But before going for the easy and ultimate step, we suggest you try some of the DIY methods which are not so difficult, trouble-free and have proven results to get rid of the ghost ants.

Study the ants to understand what they prefer to eat:

There must be a reason why these ants are coming to your house. The major reason might be the unnoticed sweet food that is available in your kitchen. They are sugar ants and they fancy sweet kinds of stuff. Honeydew is one of their favorites. It is a sugary gluey fluid secreted by aphids when they feed on plant sap.

Ghost ants also crave other sweet edibles in your house like cakes, pies, etc. They are in constant search for protein sources too and that is why dead insects and decomposed organic wastes also attract them.

The first step you should take is to safeguard all sweet ingredients like sugar, honey and maple syrup by putting them in tight containers so that there is not even a tiny spot through which these ants can be near them. Regularly dust your tables, cupboards, drawers. Make sure basins and sinks are washed properly so that they don’t have any food droppings or even smell of foodstuffs.

Locate the access points:

Spot the ant trails and find out through which lead-ins they are coming inside your house. It could be a small hole, a crack or a crevice which is very common for any house. Identify these entrance points and block them.

Locate the nests – indoor and outdoor:

See whether the ant trails are going from indoors to outdoors towards your lawn, yard, portico, backyard or grassland. Ghost ants choose their nest locations under dry leaves, dead branches of trees or moist unattended wooden logs outside your house.

But if you don’t see trails going from your house towards outdoors, rest assured they have made their secured colonies inside your house. Search for them under unmoved heavy things grounded on the floor for a long time, between cracks on walls, holes or passages caused by weather changes and even beneath basins or sinks. All they need is dampness and a source of water.

Getting rid of them:

When you find their nest plan tactically how to get rid of them. The ant nests are easily traceable if you follow the ant trails carefully. Apply ant insecticide sprays. Try and use non-repellent sprays as they do not allow the ants to escape rapidly when you apply to them.

These sprays kill on contact as well as when affected ants go back to their colonies. Ghost ants are tiny insects and it is very difficult to reach their nests even if you identify them. Ant bait is a perfect solution for that. Just place the bait beside the trail and close to the nest.

Sweet bait is obviously going to attract ghost ants as they are sugar ants. Baits are preferable over sprays in families who have children and pets. Ant baits are more effective for ant colonies rather than sprays as it is carried by an ant to the nest to kill the larvae, queens and working ants.

Precautionary Advices for Ghost Ant Removal

Decrease the amount of stored food at home:

We tend to store a lot of food in our house so that there is no shortage of it. Maybe the supermarket is not near our house or it might be our usual habit. The excess amount of food attracts these ghost ants. Once they see a secured food source, they tend to build a colony near or inside your house.

Take care of your garden:

Decayed leaves that fall at the foot of shrubs and trees in your garden are favorable sources of building colonies for ghost ants. Regular trimming of dead branches and leaves is essential. Keep a watch on the cracks and holes in your home too.

Proper Hygiene:

Hygiene is a must for both inside and outside your household. This does not allow the growth of a colony of ants. If you need firewood for your home, pile them away at a safe distance from your home.


Ghost ants are surely annoying pests but are not that harmful as the other species. They can be tackled if a few measures are taken for treatment. Try and keep the aphid population in control, have a clean kitchen and a dining hall where food crumbs are dispatched properly, avoid storing too much food at home and the ghost ants won’t bother you.

If you see them crawling in your kitchen or bathroom, buy some ant sprays and apply to them. See the result immediately!

Skip the research and talk to the exterminator to kill Ants

Click here and access our exterminator search tool- instantly get free quotes from the authentic house of exterminators in your local area.

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