Earlier today I was at a pool in Methuen, MA. Beside the pool, there was a pool noodle on the ground that must have had somewhere between 25-50 Tetramorium caespitum queens in them, both alates and dealates (about a ratio of 50:50, of alates and dealates). When I poured them out of the noodle by bumping it against the hot ground, I realized only then that the queens were probably trying to escape the extreme heat of the stone ground. Within only a few minutes, 75% of the queens quickly burned to death. The ones who managed to find shelter before overheating however (like on top of small weeds growing in between the cracks) survived. I ended up with 5 dealates and 2 alates.
At about 7:00 PM, I put the 5 dealates into the same glass test tube setup to test their supposed pleometrotic behaviour. So far they have proved to be very peaceful with each other. I have a few questions:
- Has it been confirmed that Tetramorium caespitum are pleometrotic or polygynous (or neither)? I do know that Tetramorium caespitum has been predicted to be a complex of several different species, so is it possible that only certain species display certain behaviours?
- Is it possible that I picked up more than 1 different species, because of the assumed species complex?
- The queens that I collected seemed to be in a bad situation before I captured them, if my theory is true about them being trapped in the noodle becuase of the heat. Might it be smart to provide them with some protein and/or sugar? They do seem a little tired from their adventure.
Any general help or suggestions on care is also appreciated. Thanks very much!
here is a picture of them. They seem very comfortable being together. Right now the queens are tucking their gasters beneath them, and "sniffing" each other.
Edited by Nathant2131, July 4 2017 - 6:18 PM.