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Knowledge on Camponotus decipiens? Size and longevity?


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#1 Offline dominatus - Posted May 29 2019 - 12:29 AM

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I have been searching around on forums and what not, there doesn't seem to be any records of people keeping Camponotus decipiens longer than a couple of years. The one, long term journal I found says their colony reached about a hundred workers then died off. As the brand new guardian of an established Camponotus decipiens (maybe, maybe could be Camponotus sayi) colony of about 70 workers, many, many brood, and of course a queen, I am very curious how I can do my best to ensure many years for them to grow. Does anyone have any knowledge of someone being able to keep this particular species for many years? Does anyone know if I can expect the population to reach more than a few hundred?

 

I have a nice temperature gradient going on, 86 F / 30 C on one side and 70 F / 21 C on the other side. Any time I moisten the place they tend to just move everything far away from the moistened area, so I think they really do like the formicarium nice and dry.

 

I think my biggest worry is brumation. While this species has a wide range in the south eastern USA, including Florida where there is practically no winter, we can have fairly cold winters, even snow some years, in Texas. I think brumation will be something I will need to do for them for at least 2 - 3 months. I have no cooler for them though. I figured I would just put them out back on the covered porch but some sources say simply putting a formicarium outside for brumation is a bad idea.

 

Maybe, just maybe, I might be able to get some kind of cooler before winter but I am looking for any information that I might have missed in my searches or suggestions to consider as I form a plan for keeping the colony going for years to come. I would also love to find a new queen one day and start from the beginning and would like to have an idea if I can mature a colony and have it thrive for years

 

Any experience y'all can add would be great! Thank you!


Edited by dominatus, May 29 2019 - 9:34 AM.


#2 Offline Leo - Posted May 29 2019 - 4:12 AM

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I think most Camponotus have similar care requirements. But take my advice with a grain of salt because I can't get my Camponotus singularis to eat.



#3 Offline dominatus - Posted May 29 2019 - 9:36 AM

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I think most Camponotus have similar care requirements. But take my advice with a grain of salt because I can't get my Camponotus singularis to eat.

 That sucks. Yeah, I have been following the general game plan for Camponotus just seeing if there is anything out there I may have missed so far. I hope yours thrive! Good luck.



#4 Offline 123LordOfAnts123 - Posted May 29 2019 - 11:22 AM

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All Camponotus of the Myrmentoma subgenus are fairly similiar except for slight differences in size and color. They’re all arboreal, typically have small colonies in the hundreds, and are occasionally polygynous. (Though there is arguably only one laying queen in such cases)

Many arboreal ants that nest in dead branches and twigs (vulnerable nests prone to destruction) often prioritize fast colony growth and early maturity, factors that influence a small colony size and short lifespan. Beyond collections of a couple nearcticus colonies, there are few official records of max colony size - let alone age - across all the species, so differences might occur between them.
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#5 Offline dominatus - Posted May 29 2019 - 7:59 PM

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Hmmm. Well. I have tons of these colonies on the property so I'll make journal so others can see what I experience with them. Guess I will find out how long and what numbers they produce. I love these guys so far. I hope I can brumate them well and they produce for many years.




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