Thief Ant

Category: Ants

Scientific Name: Solenopsis molesta (Say)


Color: Pale yellowish to light or dark brown
Size: Body is 1/16 inches long to ¼ inches long

Region: Found in the United States

Important Considerations:

  • These ants nest near the nests of other ants, of which they rob the food and brood
  • Colonies have a few hundred to several thousand worker ants and many queens
  • The swarmers begin in June and end towards the late fall
  • These ants have been found feeding on dead mice and rats, and therefore they may carry diseased organisms to human food
  • Outside of homes/buildings, they nest in exposed soil or under objects in trash or rotten wood

Where to Find Them on Your Property?

Thief Ants will build their homes in small cracks and crevices, woodwork and masonry. They will search homes or buildings for food, but they forage in trails. They like to use wires or linings in the walls to avoid traveling room to room. They most commonly enter places during hot seasons. They feed on items such as: meats, breads, fruit, animal fats, oils, nuts, and dairy products (occasionally sweets as well.)