Why Do Dead Ants Attract More Ants?

Why Do Dead Ants Attract More Ants?

When they’re contained in drawers or containers, their beauty makes they failed to live up to their promise.

However, you can make them into attractive decorative objects if you give them proper ventilation. An active colony of dead ants is an incentive to keep pests out of your home.

So, why do dead ants attract more ants? The answer to this question lies in a simple fact: dead ants are not food for the living ones.

Ants don’t eat the dead ones themselves but carry them from one place to another as a food source for their colony. Dead ants also provide a breeding ground for potential new colonies of ants.

The presence of dead ants alone doesn’t attract new colonies; however, it does help attract new workers to an established colony.

Do Dead Ants Attract More Ants?

If you look closely at the fine details of a leaf, you will find that it has tiny holes and canals which give to the plant the necessary minerals for growth.

When a dead ant is found, a nest of live ants comes to take it away.

But the fact is that ants cannot digest rock like substance so they take a lot of impurities with it and they use the dead ant as a tunnel or as storage.

Why Do Ants Enter Houses?

In general, ants invade homes because it is their source of food, shelter and protection.

If you notice an ant infestation within your abode, you can try different methods to get rid of them without any risk to human health or the surroundings.

Fruits, breadcrumbs, honey, fruit juice, lipids, meat, grains, bread, cheese and other dairy products attract ants because they are sources of sweet or fat food.

Why Do Dead Ants Attract More Ants?

Again, attempt to push the large amount of dead ants into the bathrooms or kitchen garbage cans before calling the exterminator.

You’ll observe that the ant trail usually heads towards a specific location.

However, after two days, the dead ants will attract more ants and the living ones will come out to clean it up.

Ants, as you are probably aware, are social insects that live and work together as a community.

The live ants will flock to the dead body and carry it to their nest to recycle it into a source of food for the others living there.

They will then transport the dead ant from their nest to their food source to feed to their colony members.

This is because they are aware that the dead body is a source of food for the living ants.

In other words, if you spray Oleic or Vanillin around dead ant piles, it will repel the ants to the scent.

Can Ants Play Dead?

Some ant species, as strange as it may seem, have the ability to play dead as a means of defense.

According to recent research, fire ants are also preyed by antlions as they bury themselves in the ground.

In most instances, they will try to leave the nest through the exit hole that is nearest to their bodies so that they won’t arouse any suspicion from their siblings in the nest.

If they are still holding onto the entrance pipe of their tunnel when the tide of the ants that are trying to leave the colony washes over them, they will lose balance and fall.

The fire ants will uncurl and stand up again in an attempt to save themselves from being washed away in their colony’s flood tide that is attempting to remove the intruders.

However, it seems that this self-defense trick does not work all the time as it does not always work against antlions.

It was revealed that ants aged between two to three weeks old are too young to fight and will instead play dead when they are attacked.

Do Ants Avoid Dead Ants?

Ants will avoid dead ants only if there is a sufficient number of live ants in the colony that can take care of the dead body.

If an ant is recently died, such as in 5 minutes, it will be completely digested by the ants in the colony within a few hours and there will be no trace that the body was there at all.

The obvious answer is no, although there may probably be exceptions which happen very rarely under special circumstances.

Where Do Ants Carry Their Dead?

Ants will remove deceased nestmates in the remaining pile to the drop chamber for further disposal.

They will normally transport the body in their mouth or in their mouth parts, depending on the size of the body to be transported.

Dead ants are unsanitary and smells bad, so cleaning the droppings is very important for health of the colony.

This may ultimately lead ants to devour their dead, and reapplying wax will also be a likely advantage for hygienic cleaning of the dead.

As a result, other living ants remove their dead from the dropped chamber in a clean manner even after the chamber is filled.

Midden is essentially an ant dumpster in the shape like a volcano-hill and is an artificial area created by ants for the removal of dropped dead and garbage.

How to Get Rid of Ants Without Attracting More

Squishing ants in your bare hands will only make the situation worse as the dead corpse will be carried away by more living ants to be dropped and contaminates the colony.

Dealing with so many ants can become frustrating and many people would want to get rid of the ants without attracting more.

If the ants are of a different species, then they are naturally repelled from their new colony.

Look into expert exterminators to permanently eliminate your ant infestation for effectiveness in long-term ant eliminations.

These experts understand how to correctly identify the pest and treat the problem accordingly.

These exterminators will clean the areas where the ants are and will also eliminate necessary food sources present in your home.

Professional exterminators and pest control are of utmost importance for successful and professional ant removal.

The reason for this is because professional eradication uses a high amount of chemicals in order to kill the pests.

It is advisable, however, to leave the area that the professional exterminators were treating to ensure that no mistakes were made and there will be no re-infestations.

Also Read: Why Do Ants Suddenly Appear In Your House? 


Ants are attracted to dead ants for a number of reasons. The dead ants provide food for the ants’ larvae and a potential source of food for the colony as a whole. They serve as a home base for new ant colonies as well.

Therefore, dead ants should be handled with care and disposed of properly in order to prevent these unwanted consequences from occurring later on.

Killing an ant attracts more because when it dies it releases pheromones attracting more of its kind to come and help it get buried.

When one ant dies, it releases pheromones which attracts more ants to the scene and helps them in the funeral process.

The emission of oleic acid alerts other ants to the dead body and tells them to come and help the dying one get buried, which would otherwise be difficult for a dying.

To prevent spreading illnesses inside the home, it is best to keep all food containers clean to ensure that no spilled crumbs are left lying around the place.

Author James