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988 replies to this topic

#981 Offline Aquaexploder - Posted January 20 2018 - 7:35 AM

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Hi guys I'm back for the season, so I see that some people are taking their ants out of hibernation. However I never really put my ants into hibernation because unfortunately I did not have a place to so. So I keep them in my room which is a solid 70 degrees Fahrenheit, and have not fed them for the hibernation period. They all seem to be in good shape though. My question is what do I do now? Should I leave them for extra time in "hibernation" or should I take them out?
Founding:

Camponotus nearcticus (x1)

Tetramorium Sp E. (x3)

Prenolepis imparis (x3)

Myrmica (Unknown) (x1)

Temnothorax (x1)

#982 Online noebl1 - Posted January 21 2018 - 8:02 AM

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How does that saying going from the novel, "the best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry."  No joke, spent the last couple days getting ready to pull that Myrmica queen out of hibernation, just finished her setup this am.  Pulled the test tube (checked on them 3 days ago I think), and she curled up and twitching in the tube.  Oh well, I pulled her anyways at the chance, but guessing she's a goner.  Oh well, at least I'll be ready for Spring ;)



#983 Offline Connectimyrmex - Posted January 24 2018 - 2:06 PM

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That stinks :(

My 1st Myrmica queen did that after drinking pesticide-laced juice (only feed organic!)


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Hawaiiant (Ben)

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Endemic Lacewing larva
Vernal Pool shrimps

#984 Online noebl1 - Posted January 24 2018 - 2:26 PM

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It's ok, though the worst part is I'm antsy now for the Spring to try to catch a Myrmica queen out foraging, hehe.   The killer part is 2 years ago I hit it right, and could have had a dozen Myrmica alates, but wasn't ready for them yet, so let them all go/didn't grab them.   Last year I made some mistakes with my Myrmica and Camponotus, so this season think I am a bit better prepared.  No juice here, only Sunburst nectar.  My guess is she probably didn't have enough stored reserves for hibernation, or something else was wrong.  Obviously will never know.

 

It does make me tempted to temporarily pull my Aphaenogaster out, feed them, and then put them back into hibernation.  I understand they don't have much in the way of a social stomach, but not sure what they have for reserves hibernation wise.  They are fairly motionless when I check on them, though eventually do move a bit if disturbed by light.

 

Also considering pulling my P. imparis out of the basement (low 50s), and start warming them back up after being down there for 2 months.  I'm really hoping she relays, but understand realistically it may not happen.

 

I ordered a handful of the Boxbox 8-1/4" x 3-1/2" x 1-1/2" containers that I am going to convert to small test tube outworlds.  I made one already for the Myrmica with one of the pencil boxes.  They are cheaper, however the hinged top is kind of a pain to open/close compared to a simple top that just comes off.  Here's the one I had done for the Myrmica:

W50YMLe.jpg

 

I sprinkled in a bit of natural reptile sand and coconut fiber.  The test tubes have small openings with cut down straws, then sealed around that with cotton.  The straw opening ends up sitting flush with the hydrostone at the test tube entrance which worked out nicely.

 

 


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#985 Online noebl1 - Posted February 1 2018 - 2:17 PM

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Took my P. imparis out of soft hibernation this week (basically the 50F basement for 2 months), and put them in that setup I posted in above.  They are an interesting ant to watch, as they don't forage often (or at least I notice), but while I was home working yesterday, through out the day I'd see one randomly exploring their setup, and even found their way inside that second test tube.  I also noticed what looked like something being carried around from ant to ant the other day, but couldn't figure out what it was.  Finally realized looks like they may have killed off one of their workers for protein, as all that was left was a head.  I don't see any signs of eggs or larvae... however yesterday added in a fungus gnat, and it's gone.  So I guess they are taking protein so should pick up some fruit flies.


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#986 Offline Connectimyrmex - Posted February 2 2018 - 7:51 AM

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Glad that yours are doing well. My local imparis colony has been active a lot lately, and I think I found a cast-out male under a rock (dead, but not aged).

 

My Myrmica queen ate a larva for no apparent reason. After that, she helped the next larva molt into its pupal stage. Overall, there is one pupa, one large larva, and a HUGE cluster of eggs and small larvae. For some reason, her worker isn't really darkening very much, even though its been out for a while (in its foraging stage).


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Hawaiiant (Ben)

Keeper of
Miniature Labradoodle
Baby Wolf Spider
Mud Dauber wasp larvae
Ochetellus Glaber
Solenopsis Geminata
Brachymyrmex Obscurior
Cardiocondyla Emeryi
Tetramorium Bicarinatum
Plagiolepis Alluaudi
Anoplolepis Gracilipes
Technomyrmex Difficilis
Pheidole Megacephala
Aholehole fish
Cowrie snail
Sea Fan Worm
100+ sea squirts
Tree seedlings
Ghost Crab
Day Gecko
Small Fat Centipede
Endemic Lacewing larva
Vernal Pool shrimps

#987 Online noebl1 - Posted February 12 2018 - 2:58 PM

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I settled on March 1st like last year to take some of the new queens out of hibernation, and then slow start taking out my existing colonies over the month of March so it's not too overwhelming.  So far, no recent deaths I have seen, though haven't examined every Lasius queen as some are buried in some of the containers so not worth disturbing.  Still bumming about my Myrmica, but it'll be ok.  I'll probably have a bunch of queens/starter 1yr/2yr colonies to sell/give away this season.

 

I broke down and took out my Aphaenogaster picea a week ago, kept them at 50F for a week, then brought them into my office.  I really should have waited a couple more weeks, but got paranoid with it being a young Aphaenogaster colonies and concerned about their winter reserves.  However guessing with how well they are doing, probably an unfounded fear.  I may do a journal on them as find them pretty interesting.  I have them in a Boxbox container (The Container Store has them again!), so did a hydrostone bottom with some sand and coconut fibers.  I added part of a drinking straw to the opening under the cotton which is my new favorite thing for starter colonies so they stay in their test tubes, but feel less exposed.  I am now sort of thinking the AC Test Tube Portals for really small ants (Lasius, Tetramorium, P. imparis, etc) may not be the most ideal, as the open ended test tube leaves them quite exposed, and there's not a good way to use the cotton ball/straw technique with portals (though may be able to force it.)

 

Think I am much more prepared with plans for my existing colonies and founding colonies this season than I was last year.

 

uCb0zeH.jpg

 

 


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#988 Online noebl1 - Posted February 16 2018 - 4:36 AM

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My P. imparis from last year *may* have laid a second time. I was doing some test tube maintenance, and when I lifted their tube out off the white hydrostone, I could see a small cluster of white at the base of the cotton ball.  It could possibly be some of the white sand in the container, so we'll see if it grows ;)  It's hard to get a good image as the test tube isn't the cleanest after a year of them in it, and the angle is hard to get a good picture.


Edited by noebl1, February 16 2018 - 4:37 AM.


#989 Offline Connectimyrmex - Posted February 16 2018 - 7:47 AM

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My ants are doing remarkably well. The w/c chromaiodes colony laid a HUGE batch of eggs in a DAY! They are pretty awesome hunters, and I've been feeding them termites and roaches.

 

The Myrmica queen is also doing great! Her second pupa is darkening, so there will be two nanitics soon (the old one + the pupa). There also is a huge cluster of larvae and eggs. 


  • noebl1 likes this
Hawaiiant (Ben)

Keeper of
Miniature Labradoodle
Baby Wolf Spider
Mud Dauber wasp larvae
Ochetellus Glaber
Solenopsis Geminata
Brachymyrmex Obscurior
Cardiocondyla Emeryi
Tetramorium Bicarinatum
Plagiolepis Alluaudi
Anoplolepis Gracilipes
Technomyrmex Difficilis
Pheidole Megacephala
Aholehole fish
Cowrie snail
Sea Fan Worm
100+ sea squirts
Tree seedlings
Ghost Crab
Day Gecko
Small Fat Centipede
Endemic Lacewing larva
Vernal Pool shrimps





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