termites vs flying ants knowing the difference

Winged Termites vs Flying Ants: How to Tell the Difference

Flying Ants vs Termites

As a pest control expert, I have seen countless cases of termite and ant infestations. One of the most common misconceptions I encounter is the confusion between winged termites and flying ants. While they may look similar at first glance, there are significant differences between the two species that can impact the treatment and prevention methods used.

So, how can you tell the difference between winged termites and flying ants? Here are a few key factors to consider.

Body Shape

One of the most noticeable differences between winged termites and flying ants is their body shape. Winged termites have a straight, tube-like body with no visible waist, while flying ants have a more defined waist between their thorax and abdomen. Termites also have straight antennae, while ants have elbowed antennae.

Wing Size and Shape

Another key difference between the two species is their wing size and shape. Termite wings are typically longer than their body and have a uniform shape, while ant wings are shorter and wider with a distinctive “vein” pattern. Additionally, termites have two sets of wings that are the same size, while ants have two sets of wings of different sizes.


Color can also be a useful distinguishing factor between winged termites and flying ants. Termites are typically pale or translucent, while ants can range in color from black to brown to reddish-brown.

Behavior Flying Ants vs Termites

Observing the behavior of the insects can also provide clues as to their identity. Termites are typically found in large groups and swarm in the spring or fall. They are attracted to light and may be seen around windows or light fixtures. Flying ants, on the other hand, are more commonly seen in the summer and may be found individually or in smaller groups. They are also attracted to light and may be seen around outdoor lighting fixtures.


Finally, the type of damage caused by each species can also help to identify them. Termites feed on wood and can cause significant damage to homes and other structures. They typically eat the softwood first, leaving a honeycomb-like pattern of tunnels behind. Flying ants do not typically cause structural damage and are more of a nuisance than a threat.

If you suspect that you have a termite or ant infestation, it is important to contact a pest control professional for an inspection and proper treatment. Using the wrong treatment method can be ineffective and may even make the problem worse.

In conclusion, knowing the difference between winged termites and flying ants can save you time, money, and frustration. By paying attention to body shape, wing size and shape, color, behavior, and damage, you can accurately identify the species and take the necessary steps to prevent and treat infestations. Remember, when in doubt, always consult a pest control expert for assistance.

Login to your account

Scroll to Top