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Facts About Thief Ants

Need to get rid of thief ants? Read on to learn the answers to all of your important questions. Need help? Call our professionals today to get started.

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What Are Thief Ants?

Thief ants are one of the smallest household ants. Thief ants get their name from the fact that they nest near other ants’ nests and steal food from these neighboring ant colonies. They are sometimes called grease ants because they are attracted to grease. 

Thief ant colonies are often smaller than those of their ant species but may include several queens and many thousand workers. Thief ants can be easily confused with pharaoh ants, though there are characteristic differences. They can be found throughout the majority of the Eastern United States. 

What Do Thief Ants Look Like?

Thief ants have brown to black bodies with paler colored legs. They are typically about 1/16 to 1/8 of an inch long. Queen thief ants are larger at about 3/8 of an inch long. They are smooth and shiny in appearance and can come in yellow, bronze or dark brown in colored variations. 

Are Thief Ants Dangerous?

Thief ants do not bite or sting so they are not dangerous in this way, however, they are able to contaminate entire food sources and introduce diseases into your home. Since thief ants are so tiny, they can easily access your food through any packaging and can effortlessly infest and contaminate a large amount of food. They have been known to feed on dead or decaying animals which can introduce pathogens into your home that may cause fevers, diarrhea and vomiting. It is thought that thief ants may be intermediate hosts for tapeworms. 

Controlling thief ants in your home can also be tricky because of their small size and the fact that they invade your home in large numbers. Additionally, they can hide in many areas within your home. 

Don’t Be Afraid To Reach Out For Help

If you are concerned about thief ants in your home, please give us a call or fill out the form on this page. is a team of experts who are highly qualified to provide the best recommendations for you and your home, no matter which part of the United States you live in. 

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The creator of this review received compensation by RMICPA, LLC on behalf of Terminix®. This review is the opinion of its creator and its claims are not endorsed or evaluated by RMICPA, LLC.

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