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Great post as usual Allie.
just a few brief comments.
I have had some experience using infrared thermometers, and locating a carpenter ant with a point laser IR thermometer can really be a fruitless effort. Temperature differentials of colonies are often more based on the impact of the colony on the insulation R factors when the ants may damage styrofoam insulation or their excavations in wood. This is hard to detect with an IR thermometer as it tends to read fairly small fields and the further back one stands the less accurate the reading. This could take some time pointing and getting the readings which are not continuous but are generaly instantaneous with these kinds of instruments. In addition, in summer in particular differentials are harder to detect. Air conditioning cools wall surfaces and the difference at a wall where a colony might be is likely not to be that striking.
I have heard of use of infrared cameras that do continuous readings over a much wider area and provide an image of differences, but even this technology which has been demonstrated would likely not find many colonies. I am hopeful that due to the lower cost of IR cameras from about $15,000 - $20,000 about 10 years ago to as low as about $1800 - $5,000 now for basic cameras. This technology may become detection tools as better studies and knowledge of the use develop. I wish that it was as easy as using a $50 IR thermometer, but perhaps it might just be a final check when colony evidence is apparent, but at this point, not that reliable. I did a search on this online about a year ago, and the practical use was very limited. Perhaps more work has been done since then.
I can share an anecdote about carpenter ant colony development. I once had cut down a relatively small tree growing in a wrong place - and had planned to put it in gorund as a hanging pot holder for flowering annuals but got busy. When I came to remove it, I found a new carpenter ant colony with a queen and only about a half dozen workers. That really gave an indication of how fast a new colony can become established from existing colonies and certainly emphasizes the importance of inspecting for existing colonies on properties. Most houses do not abut ravines from which there can be an abundance of colonies, so finding an existing colony can be the key to long term control.
Sam Bryks B.C.E.

thanks for the references, Allie; especially for the youtube.

unlike earlier, this time we had a company which did inspect for action, if any, is needed to eliminate ants at our place. nice job, http://www.noosapest.com

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