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Greg's Formicariums

formicarium ant farm habitat container

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29 replies to this topic

#1 Offline Gregory2455 - Posted February 21 2015 - 10:32 PM

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So as my colonies grow, I have started to experiment with making formicariums. My primary materials will be hydrostone and firebrick. Obviously, I am not going to be making works of art, such as Tarheel Ants, byFormica, or even dspdrew. Also, I do not plan on selling. This thread will show the finished products, and not document things in between as Drew's formicarium threads. This may change in the future. My first formicariums will probably be garbage, but I have 38 pounds of hydrostone, so I have plenty to test with. Anyway, I will be organizing my "creations" into various levels. The breakdown is:

  • Tier (T)
  • Version (V)
  • Modification (M)

The tier (T0-T5) is the size of the colony the project is meant for, T0 being test tube alternatives for lone queens, T1 being for queens with their first workers, to T5, for massive and mature colonies. The version number is the specific project or design, and the mod number is the number for additional modifications for the base design.


Edited by Gregory2455, February 20 2019 - 10:27 PM.


#2 Offline Gregory2455 - Posted February 21 2015 - 10:39 PM

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I will post pictures of my first project tomorrow, (T2V1M1) made of hydrostone made for my Tetramorium. I will wait for your thoughts before moving my ants in there, as I have no experience with formicariums (yet)! :D



#3 Offline dspdrew - Posted February 22 2015 - 9:08 PM

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Come on show everything. :) I wish more people would make threads documenting their projects, showing every step of the way.


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#4 Offline drtrmiller - Posted February 23 2015 - 5:06 AM

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Indeed, it would certainly give people a greater appreciation for the work and thought it takes to build one that both looks good and functions well to see bungled build attempts :~p
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#5 Offline dspdrew - Posted February 23 2015 - 6:26 AM

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Why not let everybody learn from your mistakes. I'm sure a few people have learned from mine. :)

 

gallery_2_137_62223.jpg



#6 Offline Gregory2455 - Posted February 23 2015 - 7:56 AM

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I will once I know what I am doing, but until then I will be asking questions. By the way I have not posted images of this project yet, as it was taking longer to finish, but tomorrow it should be done.

#7 Offline Miles - Posted February 24 2015 - 3:28 PM

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Is it done yet?


Hi, I'm Miles! I study ants, environmental science, political science, and science communication at Montana State University in Bozeman. I've been keeping ants for nearly a decade and I'm passionate about conservation and public service.

 

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#8 Offline Gregory2455 - Posted February 24 2015 - 3:30 PM

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Yes. :D



#9 Offline Miles - Posted February 24 2015 - 4:37 PM

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Pictures!


Hi, I'm Miles! I study ants, environmental science, political science, and science communication at Montana State University in Bozeman. I've been keeping ants for nearly a decade and I'm passionate about conservation and public service.

 

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#10 Offline Gregory2455 - Posted February 24 2015 - 10:13 PM

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Okay. Pictures are coming today. I basically messed up like Drew's first ytong nest shown above, except not so bad. Something happened with the hydrostone, but it kinda shrunk while drying.The nest part seemed to have pulled away from the glass, so now the ants would be able to squeeze around and possibly get trapped. It is basically a loss, but I do not really mind, as it was just an experiment...



#11 Offline Gregory2455 - Posted February 24 2015 - 11:34 PM

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(T2V1M1)

Okay here is the failed attempt. For some reason, the hydrostone cracked up and shrunk. 

 

And you can see here that there is a space between the nest module and the glass.


Edited by Gregory2455, February 24 2015 - 11:40 PM.


#12 Offline Gregory2455 - Posted February 24 2015 - 11:38 PM

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And here is a bare experimental nest module showing off its nice sandy walls. :D I figured out a way to get sand to stick very firmly to hydrostone, and have explained it in chat, and will show it later on this thread. This nest module is designed to go into formicarium (T1V1M1).


Edited by Gregory2455, February 24 2015 - 11:41 PM.


#13 Offline Gregory2455 - Posted February 24 2015 - 11:40 PM

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I also found that adding sand into the hydrostone mix as a top layer, over the solid hydrotone making the nest absorbs water a lot faster than normal hydrostone, and will gradually feed it into the solid hydrostone, which can hold water well, but takes forever to soak up the water.



#14 Offline dspdrew - Posted February 25 2015 - 12:34 AM

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... which can hold water well, but takes forever to soak up the water.

 

That's a good description of Hydrostone.



#15 Offline antmaniac - Posted February 25 2015 - 3:35 AM

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@Gregory2455 Very neat design with that hydrostone and ytong combo.

 

@dspdrew How did you break your ytong nest?



#16 Offline dean_k - Posted February 25 2015 - 6:17 AM

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Gregory2455 is a younger version of dspdrew.


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#17 Offline dspdrew - Posted February 25 2015 - 6:42 AM

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@dspdrew How did you break your ytong nest?

 

I was trying something stupid and way too hard because I didn't know what the hell I was doing.



#18 Offline Miles - Posted February 25 2015 - 8:26 AM

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... which can hold water well, but takes forever to soak up the water.

 

That's a good description of Hydrostone.

 

Interesting. The Hydrostone that Ray Mendez showed us readily soaked up water.


Hi, I'm Miles! I study ants, environmental science, political science, and science communication at Montana State University in Bozeman. I've been keeping ants for nearly a decade and I'm passionate about conservation and public service.

 

Website | YouTube Channel


#19 Offline dspdrew - Posted February 25 2015 - 8:32 AM

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That's a good description of Hydrostone.

Interesting. The Hydrostone that Ray Mendez showed us readily soaked up water.

 

 

I guess it's just a matter of what you feel slow is. I'll say this: Hydrostone definitely soaks up water a lot slower than Ytong, dirt, or any sponge.

 

Edit: Actually a really thick PVA sponge can soak up water extremely slow sometimes.


Edited by dspdrew, February 25 2015 - 10:02 AM.


#20 Offline Gregory2455 - Posted February 25 2015 - 9:25 AM

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@Gregory2455 Very neat design with that hydrostone and ytong combo.
 
@dspdrew How did you break your ytong nest?

Nine of this is Ytong.

Gregory2455 is a younger version of dspdrew.

:D :D :D





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