Their huge jaws are adept at shaving timber, eating other insects and drinking plant juices. Though they are not poisonous, the bite of a Carpenter Ant can hurt thanks to the large mouth parts. Carpenter Ants are also able to spray formic acid from the tip of the abdomen, which may irritate skin and eyes. Carpenter Ants do not have stingers.
The diet of this ant is varied. It eats other insects, plant juices and the 'honeydew' secreted from the bottoms of aphids. (Most ants 'shepherd' aphids in order to collect this sweet liquid.) Carpenter Ants do not eat wood, they just live in it.
In hot summer months, Carpenter Ants are more active at night. An old, established colony will eventually produce long-winged males and queens called alates. The winged ants fly out of the colony to mate, creating new or satellite colonies. Swarms of alates are usually seen in the spring. This is the only time ants will develop wings and they only do it for this purpose.