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Tapinoma sessile

Odorous House Ant


Size: About 1/8-inch long.
Color: Brown.

If crushed, the workers give off a rotten coconut odor, hence their name.


Odorous house ants may develop huge colonies containing thousands of workers and numerous queens. This species may be difficult to control and does not feed much on ant baits. The keys to control are to find the colonies and subcolonies and treat them directly. Regular inspections and service are necessary to find and treat new colonies as they move in from neighboring properties. The services of a professional, such as Wood Pecker, are very helpful when encountering these ants.


These ants nest outdoors under items on the ground, within landscape mulch, beneath loose bark on trees, under ground cover, in potted plants, and within piles of items, such as lumber, firewood, or bricks. Nests may readily be established inside homes, in walls, beneath carpeting, and other suitable voids or spaces.