4954 N. Shamrock Place, Tucson, AZ 85705

Pavement Ant

Tetramorium caespitum

Pavement Ant

Physical Features

This stinging ant is approximately 1/10 to 1/8 inch long.  Dark brown to black, these ants have workers that are all the same size.  They have one pair of spines and noticeable grooves on their head and thorax.

Life Cycle

Complete metamorphosis

These ants mainly swarm to form new colonies in spring, but when they invade and preside inside structures this behavior can happen any season.  The queen produces 5-20 eggs per day with larva developing into an adult over a period of two months.


  • Diet: Feed on a variety of foods with greasy, sweet materials being preferred. Will also feed on seeds, dead insects, and fruit.
  • Activity: More active during spring and summer months. Active all year when an interior problem. Will forage up to 30 feet to get to a food source.
  • Preferred Climate: Spring time temperatures in Arizona 70-75 degrees.
  • Defense: Nest in protected areas typically under cement slabs, edges of rocks or inside structures under the foundation.
  • Cautions: Immediate action when on the outside helps to avoid infestations from moving indoors.
  • Home Invasion: Pavement ants will emerge from edges of cement foundations, structural voids, under rockscapes. They are often found near water sources including leaky pipes.

Helpful Hints

  • Repair any leaky pipes and minimize any potential water collection.
  • Keep yards well maintained to minimize harborage points and food sources.
  • If found, an ongoing pest control maintenance plan can help prevent future infestations.


It can bite and sting when disturbed.

Nesting Sites

  • In soil under sidewalks, driveways and other concealed locations
  • Under homes with concrete slabs
  • In cracks in the concrete