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Types of Little Black Flying Insects

Valerie Tandoi

During the warm weather months, lots of little black flying bugs like to rear their heads both indoors and outdoors. Some pests are nothing to worry about and can be easy to exterminate. Other flying creatures may cause more of a threat due to biting or stinging.

Not every black bug with wings is a fly.

Familiarizing yourself with some common types of black flying insects can help you to keep your home and your family safe during the summer.


If you find a very tiny, spec-sized black bug circling around your head or your fruit bowl, it is likely a gnat. Gnats are a very, very small type of fly. Due to their small size, they can easily be shooed away. Gnats can bite but they are nothing to worry about. If you are spending time outdoors at night and are prone to bug bites, wearing bug repellent can help to keep the gnats away.

Flying Ants

Flying ants may resemble black carpenter ants that you would find on the ground only they have wings. Flying ants are not dangerous. Like other types of ants, flying ants are most concerned with finding food and reproducing. Flying ants do not go out of their way to attack humans. If you are finding a lot of flying ants in your home, you can usually get rid of them by using insect repellent. One reason some people are bothered by flying ants is because they resemble termites. It is important to remember that flying ants are not termites and cannot cause the same damage to your house.


Termites are another black-winged insect. Unlike flying ants, which do not cause many issues for people, termites can eat through wood and wreck a home. Since flying ants and termites look similar, knowing how to identify a termite is important. Termites have completely strait abdomens while flying ants have a thin and indented abdomen. Termite wings are always equal in length while flying ant wings can be uneven. Flying ants have bent antennae and termites have straight antennae. If you can capture and observe one bug, you should be able to make this determination on your own. If you are unsure, it is always best to call pest control. Termite infestations usually need professional treatment and the sooner the treatment is started, the less damage will be done to your home.

Box Elders

Box elders are a type of little black flying bug easy to identify. Box elders have a red marking over their black coating. You may even find this bug somewhat pretty. Box elders do not bite and people have no reason to fear them. When it is warm out, box elders can be found near plants and trees and will likely leave you alone. Box elders only may be a bother to you when it comes time for the seasons to change. Box elders do not like the cold and you may find a lot of them hanging out near your front door hoping to find their way in to escape the cold. If you find a single box elder in your home, it can usually be easily trapped in a napkin or cup and released back into the outdoors.