Pavement Ant


Actual Size: 1/16″ to 1/8″

Characteristics: Light to dark brown to blackish; dark parallel lines run down the head and thorax.

Legs: 6

Antennae: Yes

Wings: The reproductive males and females have wings.

Habitat: Nests are located in open soil or under stones and pavement, masonry or wood, near sidewalks, patios, and driveways.


  • Prefer to feed on meat proteins and greasy foods.
  • Indoors, they will nest in walls, insulation, and floors.
  • Outdoors pavement ants nest under flat stones, sidewalks, and concrete slabs.

Pavement Ants in Eastern Tennessee

Pavement ants nest beside and under sidewalks, driveways, and foundations. Found throughout Eastern Tennessee, pavement ants feed on a variety of foods. However, they are partial to the honeydew produced by aphids and mealybugs.  Mature pavement ant colonies produce winged swarmers in the spring.  Ant swarmers can cause greater problems than worker ants in large commercial buildings. Due to their close proximity to buildings, they often make their way indoors in search of food. Swarms occur during the summer months and are sometimes confused with termites.

Pavement Ant Habitat

Pavement ants prefer to nest in areas with minimal vegetation, which makes them favor urban habitats. True to their name, pavement ants nest under or near sidewalks, slabs, and concrete. As they construct nests, they will place the soil removed in a mound near their nest. These mounds are usually discovered on the surface of the ground or next to a patio or sidewalk. Pavement ant nests generally occur at ground level and workers use pipes or wires to move upward. In commercial buildings, they often become an issue when the alates or reproductives emerge from openings in walls above false ceilings, then drop into the rooms below.

Pavement Ant Behaviors, Threats or Dangers

Pavement ants can bite and they do have a stinger, but they rarely bite humans. More of an annoyance, pavements ants are a nuisance causing unsightly piles of sand on driveways, sidewalks, and inside commercial buildings. Although they do not pose a public health risk, they do contaminate food as they forage. As they invade homes in large by numbers, pavement ants rummage for any available food source to feed their substantial colonies. When nests aren’t treated in time, pavement ants will continue to spread into new populations. If you suspect a pavement ant infestation, consult a licensed ant exterminator. Don’t wait until your home is overrun by pavement ants. Contact Johnson Pest Control today!