Insect Identification

Ants and Spiders


Argentine Ant

Argentine Ant

Common Name: Argentine Ant
Scientific Name: Linepithema humile

General Size: 2mm to 3mm long

Look for these Colors: Light to dark brown

Carpenter Ant

Carpenter Ant

Common Name: Carpenter Ant
Scientific Name: Camponotus

General Size: Adults vary in length (polymorphic) Up to 1 inch
Minor worker: ¼ inch (6 mm)
Major worker: ½ inch (12 mm)

Appearance: Commonly black

Build nests inside wood consisting of galleries

Field Ant

Field Ant

Common Name: Field Ant
Scientific Name: Formica subsericea

General Size: 1/8th of an inch

Look for these Colors: Yellowish brown to dark brown

Field ants typically make their nests as mounds in soil

Fire Ant

Fire Ant

Common Name: Fire Ant
Scientific Name: Solenopsis invicta

General Size: 1/8"-1/4" (0.025"-0.25") in length

Look for these Colors: Reddish brown to black

Typically large ground nests. Ants are aggressive and will sting repeatedly

Odorous House Ant

Odorous House Ant

Common Name: Odorous House Ant
Scientific Name: Tapinoma sessile

General Size: Workers are 1/16 to 1/8 inch (2.4-3.3 mm)

Look for these Colors: uniform in color from brown to black

Pavement Ant

Pavement Ant

Common Name: Pavement Ant
Scientific Name: Tetramorium caespitum

General Size: 1/10 to 1/8 inch (2-3mm)

Look for these Colors: Brown to black

Pharaoh Ant

Pharaoh Ant

Common Name: Pharaoh Ant
Scientific Name: Monomorium pharaonis

General Size: 1/12 to 1/16 inch long

Look for these Colors: Golden yellow to reddish-brown


Thief Ant

Common Name: Thief Ant
Scientific Name: Solenopsis molesta

General Size: Tiny, 1/32-inch long

Look for these Colors: Yellow to light brown with very small eyes




Black Widow Spider

Black Widow Spider

Common Name: Black Widow
Scientific Name: Latrodectus

General Size: Female black widows are about 1.5 inches long. The males are about half the size of females

Look for these Colors: Female is black with a red hourglass shape on the underneath part of her abdomen

Males are lighter in color and may sometimes have an hourglass marking on their abdomen, but it may be a lighter color than yellow or white

Bite is harmful to humans


Brown Recluse Spider

Brown Recluse Spider

Common Name: Brown Recluse Spider
Scientific Name: Loxosceles reclusa

General Size: 6�20 mm or larger

Look for these Colors: Typically light to medium brown

Venomous bite


Cellar Spider

Cellar Spider

Common Name: Cellar Spider
Scientific Name: Family Pholcidae

General Size: 6mm-8mm

Look for these Colors: Tan or gray

Typically found in basements or dark, quiet spots


Yellow Garden Spider

Garden Spider

Common Name: Yellow Garden Spider
Scientific Name:Argiope aurantia

General Size: 8mm for males, up to 30mm for females

Look for these Colors: Black and Yellow


Wolf Spider

Wolf Spider

Common Name: Wolf Spider
Scientific Name: Family Lycosidae

General Size: Up to 35 mm

Look for these Colors:  Black, gray and brown

Robust and Quick Moving


Yellow Sac Spider

Yellow Sac Spider

Common Name: Yellow Sac Spider
Scientific Name: Class Chilopoda

General Size: 10 mm

Look for these Colors: Typically a pale yellow with some dark markings



*All images provided by and approved by NPMA

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