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Dspdrew's Liometopum occidentale Journal [38] (Discontinued)

Liometopum occidentale Dspdrew journal

141 replies to this topic

#1 Online dspdrew - Posted September 17 2013 - 12:25 AM

dspdrew
  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

5-18-2013

 

I found this Liometopum occidentale queen in Southern California, May 3rd 2013, shortly after dark on a very hot day. She was just wandering around in the dirt with her wings still attached.

 

ID Thread: www.formiculture.com/index.php/topic/45-

 

Location:  O'Neill Regional Park, Orange County, California.
Habitat:  Oak forest.
Coloration, hue and pattern:  All very dark brown.
Length:  12mm.

gallery_2_39_17667.jpg

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She laid a pretty big pile of eggs the next day, maybe 40 or so.

Today it looks like there's probably over 50 eggs.

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#2 Online dspdrew - Posted September 17 2013 - 12:26 AM

dspdrew
  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Update 6-8-2013

 

Yesterday my queen's first worker eclosed, and today it looks like there are maybe around 12 of them.

Now that I have seen the very first workers eclose from three different brand new queens of three different genera, I realize now how unbelievably tiny they can be compared to the workers of mature colonies. With my Crematogaster colony, it was not as extreme of a difference, but this queen, and my new Pheidole queen's first workers are way smaller than mature ones.

gallery_2_39_66021.jpg



#3 Online dspdrew - Posted September 17 2013 - 12:28 AM

dspdrew
  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Update 6-17-2013

 

We now have about 45 workers, and it's getting hard to feed them because they're still in the test tube. I really wish I had something ready for them, they're growing so fast!



#4 Online dspdrew - Posted September 17 2013 - 12:30 AM

dspdrew
  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Update 6-29-2013

 

The colony is still growing fast. The queen now has around 45 workers, 15 pupae, and as of just a few hours ago, another batch of about 40 new eggs!. I have moved them into a small Tupperware container for now, with the test tube in there still acting as their nest. At first they piled a bunch of wet dirt in the entrance of the test tube, I guess to make it smaller so they'll feel more secure, but have since moved all that dirt onto the wet cotton inside the tube instead. They now have about a 3mm layer of mud on the cotton, and the entrance to the tube is perfectly clean. So far I've been feeding them sweet fruit and insects. Here's a video of them attacking a few termites. Once they killed them, they laid them all in a row just inside the entrance of the tube.

 



#5 Online dspdrew - Posted September 17 2013 - 12:32 AM

dspdrew
  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Update 7-19-2013

 

Well this colony does not look like it's doing very good now. They are down to about 25 workers, with a lot of them dying just recently and I'm not sure what's killing them either. That new pile of about 40 eggs for some reason never seemed like it was developing at all, and now is down to about 13 eggs; If they're eating them, I'm not sure why. As for the queen, her gaster seems to have shrunk quite a bit. I have been feeding them crickets and termites which they seem to like, and occasionally a piece of a grape. Today I removed the old test tube  they were nesting in, and put a fresh new one in. I added a cork plug with a hole in it so it won't be so open and the humidity inside it will be a little higher. I gave them another cricket and some honey which they seemed to like, even though before they strangely didn't seem very interested in honey at all. We'll see how it goes from here.



#6 Online dspdrew - Posted September 17 2013 - 12:35 AM

dspdrew
  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Update 8-22-2013

 

This colony looks like it's doing much better now. There hasn't been anymore deaths since the last update, and there is a whole new pile of brood. I've been keeping them in a dark cabinet and haven't disturbed them anymore than I have to.

 

Here's a little video of them and their brood I took while I was feeding them today.

 



#7 Online dspdrew - Posted September 17 2013 - 12:40 AM

dspdrew
  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Update 9-8-2013

 

The colony is still doing much better and has even had a recent explosion of new workers, bringing them back up to about 50 or so. I even saw one that was quite a bit larger than the others.

 



#8 Offline AntCzar - Posted September 17 2013 - 10:36 AM

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Did her workers snip her wings for her? I hope she got a refund! LOL :D



#9 Online dspdrew - Posted September 17 2013 - 12:35 PM

dspdrew
  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Did her workers snip her wings for her? I hope she got a refund! LOL :D

Actually she's dead. She just died yesterday. I have 50 workers and no queen now, so I guess this journal's done...



#10 Offline AntCzar - Posted September 17 2013 - 12:39 PM

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Dang that sucks any idea what happened?



#11 Offline wook - Posted September 17 2013 - 2:13 PM

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My condolences drew!

Did you tried what I told you?

However, seems like wings has something to do with queen's death, happened to me with F. fusca and F. pratensis queens...:(


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#12 Online dspdrew - Posted September 17 2013 - 3:59 PM

dspdrew
  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Update 9-17-2013

 

I don't have a clue why she died, or is dying I guess... she's not completely dead yet, but very close.

 



#13 Offline wook - Posted September 17 2013 - 4:44 PM

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I am very sorry about that :(

I have my F. pratensis last moments on video, maybe you want to see?


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#14 Online dspdrew - Posted September 17 2013 - 5:54 PM

dspdrew
  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

I am very sorry about that :(

I have my F. pratensis last moments on video, maybe you want to see?

Sure. I just posted the video of mine dying.



#15 Online dspdrew - Posted May 7 2014 - 11:30 AM

dspdrew
  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Update 5-10-2014
 
On Saturday 5-3-2014, in a place called Little Thomas Mountain in the San Jacinto Mountains, I found this Liometopum occidentale queen wandering around on the side of a dirt road.

 

The next day she already had a huge pile of eggs.

 

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After about one week, the queen looks to be doing great, with a large pile of brood developing pretty quick.



#16 Online dspdrew - Posted May 31 2014 - 12:46 AM

dspdrew
  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Update 5-31-2014
 
This queen is still doing well, with a large pile of rapidly developing brood.
 
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#17 Offline dermy - Posted May 31 2014 - 11:23 AM

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Is that just her first brood? That's a lot of workers!



#18 Online dspdrew - Posted June 1 2014 - 7:22 AM

dspdrew
  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Yes. Liometopum have huge colonies.



#19 Offline dermy - Posted June 1 2014 - 1:50 PM

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They must be huge, do they make satellite nests?


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#20 Online dspdrew - Posted June 1 2014 - 6:13 PM

dspdrew
  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Yes, lots of them.







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