Entomology (Study of Bugs)/Insect Identification



Hi! We were tearing out our front porch today and found these insects living in the wood. We live in Illinois. Some of the wood is clearly rotten. We're hoping they're not something that is causing damage. One of the pictures is possibly a nest that hatched. Thanks for your help!


The image labelled "nest" appears to be a spider web, there are no insects that make this kind of structure. The image labelled "insect" is too small to see clearly (do you have a larger version?) but it might be a carpenter ant (see http://www.livingwithbugs.com/carpenter_ants.html for pictures). Carpenter ants can damage wood while building their colonies.

The most serious threat to structural wood, especially if wet, is dry rot fungi (see http://www.livingwithbugs.com/dry-rot.html if you are not familiar with this fungus). If you are reconstructing the porch, irregardless of what insects may be present, it is a good idea to use pressure-treated wood and/or protect structural wood with borate insecticide/fungicide (see http://www.livingwithbugs.com/bora_care.html). Post a follow up if you have questions having looking over this material.

Jack DeAngelis  

Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Jack DeAngelis


I can answer questions in any area of entomology (study of insects, spiders, mites, ticks, and other terrestrial arthropods). Contact me about home and garden insects, insects that bite and sting, and insects that damage homes such as carpenter ants and termites.


20 years as university extension entomologist, now retired; currently publish a website about home and garden insects.

see www.livingwithbugs.com/resume.html

Ph.D. in Entomology

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