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CCJ's ants - Opisthopsis (strobe ant), Melophorus, C.suffusus, Pheidole antipodum, Polyrhachis, Iridomyrmex, Myrmecia

journal opisthopsis rufithorax strobe ant camponotus melophorus furnace ant pheidole iridomyrmex suffusus polyrhachis rufifemur meat ant antipodum rhytidoponera aphaenogaster nigrocincta aspera myrmecia bull ant fulvipes

1187 replies to this topic

#1021 Offline DaveJay - Posted December 10 2018 - 7:17 AM

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I'd be inclined towards Myrmecia forficata too although they are very similar to M. pyriformis from what I've seen and read but I think pyriformis are darker. My queen is darker but I still hesitate to say 100% positive I.D. as M. pyriformis, there's possibly more than two species that look identical to the naked eye.

The head hanging there is certainly weird, it seems the jaws are just clamped shut in death, the Myrmecia probably chomped her head off!



#1022 Offline CoolColJ - Posted December 10 2018 - 2:54 PM

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M.pyriformis are nocturnal though, so maybe these are pyriformis. In any case these fly next year, and now I know they are around. First time I have ever seen them here.

Never during the day, first time at night, but this is only the third time I have looked here at night.

 

This tennis court could be a good spot for a blacklight trap, since the spot lights are not turned on at night, and it lies on the edge of bushland.

Only the light on the building and the one street lamp nearby


  • DaveJay likes this

Current ant colonies -
1) Opisthopsis Rufithorax (strobe ant), Melophorus Sp1. (furnace ant) red and black, Melophorus sp2. black and orange
Lots of Pheidole colonies....  Polyrhachis rufifemur, Camponotus suffusus bendingesis, Myrmecia fulvipes queen
Journal = http://www.formicult...ra-iridomyrmex/

Heterotermes cf brevicatena termite pet/feeder journal = http://www.formicult...feeder-journal/


#1023 Offline CoolColJ - Posted December 10 2018 - 6:45 PM

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Summer 11th December 2018
 
Camponotus aeneopilosus aka golden tail sugar ant - 12mm queen
16mm test tube - styrofoam double chamber setup - heatcable
12 eggs
 
If you look back at the start of this journal, my second ever ant was one of these with 2 nanitics, but the queen died...
Ever since then, it's always been on the back of my mind to get another, and today is it :yes:
These girls are very active, energetic, zippy, agile and hyper ants, especially for Camponotus, and active during the day unlike 90% of Camponotus!
It's why I like them, much like the C.suffusus I also have. Both with gold bums, go figure :D
 
But this queen seems cute and smaller than I remember... this one is 12mm.. so a small Camponotus species, but I said the first one I had measured around 15mm at the start of this journal... I probably measured wrongly back then
This one seems easy to move around with light, she will move within 15mins!

Anyway, being uncovered doesn't seem to bother her, so I will attempt to keep her outside on the heat cable.
But may later move her into my incubator 

click to enlarge

 

Edited by CoolColJ, December 10 2018 - 7:19 PM.

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Current ant colonies -
1) Opisthopsis Rufithorax (strobe ant), Melophorus Sp1. (furnace ant) red and black, Melophorus sp2. black and orange
Lots of Pheidole colonies....  Polyrhachis rufifemur, Camponotus suffusus bendingesis, Myrmecia fulvipes queen
Journal = http://www.formicult...ra-iridomyrmex/

Heterotermes cf brevicatena termite pet/feeder journal = http://www.formicult...feeder-journal/


#1024 Offline FSTP - Posted December 10 2018 - 6:51 PM

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this is such a  great journal. 

 

That picture of that decapitated ant head biting on the petiole of that Myrmecia is facinating. 

 

 

Perhaps you said alreay there's 52 pages so I likely didn't see it, but what do you use to photograph your ants? You have such great pictures.


Edited by FSTP, December 10 2018 - 6:53 PM.

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There are videos of my ants here: https://www.youtube....bN5yYK2KWXA0vQ?


#1025 Offline CoolColJ - Posted December 10 2018 - 7:15 PM

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this is such a  great journal. 
 
That picture of that decapitated ant head biting on the petiole of that Myrmecia is facinating. 
 
 
Perhaps you said alreay there's 52 pages so I likely didn't see it, but what do you use to photograph your ants? You have such great pictures.


On page 9 is a description of my old setup http://www.formicult...ge-9#entry90903
Camera is still the same but lens used has been a second hand Pana Leica 45mm macro. The Olympus 60mm macro I also have looks about the same.
And now with an external flash, with kitchen tissue paper diffuser rubber banded over lens :)
It's not just the gear though, takes a lot of practise to figure how to best shoot ants through a test tube etc, not unlike shooting a sniper rifle :D

Edited by CoolColJ, December 10 2018 - 7:16 PM.

Current ant colonies -
1) Opisthopsis Rufithorax (strobe ant), Melophorus Sp1. (furnace ant) red and black, Melophorus sp2. black and orange
Lots of Pheidole colonies....  Polyrhachis rufifemur, Camponotus suffusus bendingesis, Myrmecia fulvipes queen
Journal = http://www.formicult...ra-iridomyrmex/

Heterotermes cf brevicatena termite pet/feeder journal = http://www.formicult...feeder-journal/


#1026 Offline CoolColJ - Posted December 10 2018 - 11:02 PM

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Pheidole Colony G - 2x Phediole sp. red head/black body 8-9mm queens
16mm test tube - heat cable
40 workers - first major pupa, second major larvae pupating, lots of brood

 

First major pupa is starting to go yellow

 

 

Camponotus nigriceps 18-19mm queen
20mm test tube, in styrofoam and heat cable incubator

 

Moved her into my 27-28 degree incubator

 

 

Pheidole antipodum 14-15mm queens x 11
in styrofoam and heat cable incubator

All setups have a styro foam double chamber entrance

1) Triple queen - red dirt  - cleared all the red dirt and heaped up it into a low wall at the middle of the test tube

huge single stack of eggs

2) Triple queen - cardboard insert and aquarium filter wool

stack of eggs

3) queen with coco coir - moved half the coco coir against the cotton dam. The other half remains where she pushed it, up against the styrofoam double chamber entrance

big stack of  eggs

4) Queen with red dirt - moved the red dirt to block up the double chamber entrance

small clump of 15+ eggs

5) Queen with white sand - 4th queen from setup 1 moved here

 

6) Queen - bare test tube

 

7) Queen, former partner of queen 6 - bare test tube

 

So queen 6, was one of the dual queen pair that would nest in the outter chamber against the exit cotton.

yesterday I split them both up and forced both into the inner chambers of the own test tubes.

Queen 7 stayed there, but today Queen 6 moved back to the outer chamber  :facepalm:

 

Queen 5 used to be a the fourth member of Setup 1, moved her to the dead queen's white sand test tube yesterday.

Today she had moved some of the white sand to block up the styrofoam chamber entrance much like Queen 4 :)

I am also having second thoughts about moving her off the quad queen setup...

 

 

Melophorus sp.- red black 6-7mm queen
refillable gypsum plugged test tube connected to outworld - heatcable
1 minor worker, 1 large, 1 medium, 1 small cocoon, 4 small larvae, 5 eggs

 

OK this took me by surprise, 2 days after the first small cocoon shows up, that very large larvae has cocooned, and the other large larvae as well!

So there are 3 cocoons of different sizes - gives you a hint of how polymorphic this species is  :)

Two smallest placed near the heat cable

 

click to enlarge


Edited by CoolColJ, December 10 2018 - 11:04 PM.

  • Nare and DaveJay like this

Current ant colonies -
1) Opisthopsis Rufithorax (strobe ant), Melophorus Sp1. (furnace ant) red and black, Melophorus sp2. black and orange
Lots of Pheidole colonies....  Polyrhachis rufifemur, Camponotus suffusus bendingesis, Myrmecia fulvipes queen
Journal = http://www.formicult...ra-iridomyrmex/

Heterotermes cf brevicatena termite pet/feeder journal = http://www.formicult...feeder-journal/


#1027 Offline DaveJay - Posted December 10 2018 - 11:54 PM

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Summer 11th December 2018

Camponotus aeneopilosus aka golden tail sugar ant - 12mm queen
16mm test tube - styrofoam double chamber setup - heatcable
12 eggs

If you look back at the start of this journal, my second ever ant was one of these with 2 nanitics, but the queen died...
Ever since then, it's always been on the back of my mind to get another, and today is it :yes:
These girls are very active, energetic, zippy, agile and hyper ants, especially for Camponotus, and active during the day unlike 90% of Camponotus!
It's why I like them, much like the C.suffusus I also have. Both with gold bums, go figure :D

But this queen seems cute and smaller than I remember... this one is 12mm.. so a small Camponotus species, but I said the first one I had measured around 15mm at the start of this journal... I probably measured wrongly back then
This one seems easy to move around with light, she will move within 15mins!

Anyway, being uncovered doesn't seem to bother her, so I will attempt to keep her outside on the heat cable.
But may later move her into my incubator

click to enlarge


Mine was really stubborn, dry tube, bright overhead light and she hung in there for months. Also, I have had her for months and there are larvae but no new workers, but then she did come without any brood, not even eggs. They certainly are zippy little things, I find it hard to do maintenance even with only one worker out whereas with the C consobrinus 6 workers can be out and I can still time it to change food bowls over. In fact, one of the two deaths I've had was me injuring the first scout trying to shut the lid, they are so fast when agitated!
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#1028 Offline Rstheant - Posted December 11 2018 - 4:05 PM

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Nice. Any myrmecia left?

#1029 Offline Leo - Posted December 11 2018 - 4:28 PM

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he has 1-2 I think.



#1030 Offline CoolColJ - Posted December 11 2018 - 8:30 PM

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Nice. Any myrmecia left?

 

Yeah the M.fulvipes queen with her single egg :)

 

I also have the M.nigrocincta here with her 5 brood, 1 which has pupated without spinning a cocoon... but it is already sold it, just waiting till next week to post it


  • DaveJay likes this

Current ant colonies -
1) Opisthopsis Rufithorax (strobe ant), Melophorus Sp1. (furnace ant) red and black, Melophorus sp2. black and orange
Lots of Pheidole colonies....  Polyrhachis rufifemur, Camponotus suffusus bendingesis, Myrmecia fulvipes queen
Journal = http://www.formicult...ra-iridomyrmex/

Heterotermes cf brevicatena termite pet/feeder journal = http://www.formicult...feeder-journal/


#1031 Offline DaveJay - Posted December 11 2018 - 10:08 PM

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Nice. Any myrmecia left?

 

Yeah the M.fulvipes queen with her single egg :)

 

I also have the M.nigrocincta here with her 5 brood, 1 which has pupated without spinning a cocoon... but it is already sold it, just waiting till next week to post it

 

Just don't use Australia Post!!! :)


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#1032 Offline CoolColJ - Posted December 12 2018 - 1:40 AM

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Summer 12th December 2018

 
Pheidole antipodum 14-15mm queens x 11
in styrofoam and heat cable incubator

All setups have a styro foam double chamber entrance

1) Quad queen - red dirt  - cleared all the red dirt and heaped up it into a low wall at the middle of the test tube
huge single stack of eggs
2) Triple queen - cardboard insert and aquarium filter wool water dam
stack of eggs
3) queen with coco coir - moved half the coco coir against the cotton dam. The other half remains where she pushed it, up against the styrofoam double chamber entrance
big stack of  eggs
4) Queen with red dirt - moved the red dirt to block up the double chamber entrance
small clump of 15+ eggs
-----   5) Queen with white sand - 4th queen from setup 1, moved here, then moved back to setup 1
 

6) Queen - bare test tube
 
7) Queen - bare test tube, former partner of queen 6
3 eggs

 

Queen 5's sand was still way too wet, I doubt she will lay in a tube that wet, plus health and mold issues concerned me so I moved her back to Setup 1 and make it a quad queen setup again.

Queen 6 finally moved into the inner chamber on her own! But she still hugs the styrofoam.

Queen 7 already laid 3 eggs after 2 days, she stuck them to the outer right wall. So I guess it means she feels more comfortable on her own, than when put in together with queen 6, as she originally was.


Edited by CoolColJ, December 12 2018 - 1:48 AM.

Current ant colonies -
1) Opisthopsis Rufithorax (strobe ant), Melophorus Sp1. (furnace ant) red and black, Melophorus sp2. black and orange
Lots of Pheidole colonies....  Polyrhachis rufifemur, Camponotus suffusus bendingesis, Myrmecia fulvipes queen
Journal = http://www.formicult...ra-iridomyrmex/

Heterotermes cf brevicatena termite pet/feeder journal = http://www.formicult...feeder-journal/


#1033 Offline CoolColJ - Posted December 12 2018 - 2:04 AM

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Someone offered me a mini trap jaw Anochetus species queen - well I might trade my Rhytidoponera aspera queen for her

Which I intended to sell anyway

 

About 5-6mm

 

As seen in the Ants Australia vid here

https://youtu.be/0lw3-kCBx50?t=445


Edited by CoolColJ, December 12 2018 - 2:07 AM.

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Current ant colonies -
1) Opisthopsis Rufithorax (strobe ant), Melophorus Sp1. (furnace ant) red and black, Melophorus sp2. black and orange
Lots of Pheidole colonies....  Polyrhachis rufifemur, Camponotus suffusus bendingesis, Myrmecia fulvipes queen
Journal = http://www.formicult...ra-iridomyrmex/

Heterotermes cf brevicatena termite pet/feeder journal = http://www.formicult...feeder-journal/


#1034 Offline Leo - Posted December 12 2018 - 3:15 AM

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They need dirt, humidity, darkness and springtails



#1035 Offline CoolColJ - Posted December 12 2018 - 5:23 AM

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They need dirt, humidity, darkness and springtails

 

Well I'm still thinking about it, but even before when there were the larger trap jaws for sale I didn't get them because I'm not really into them


Current ant colonies -
1) Opisthopsis Rufithorax (strobe ant), Melophorus Sp1. (furnace ant) red and black, Melophorus sp2. black and orange
Lots of Pheidole colonies....  Polyrhachis rufifemur, Camponotus suffusus bendingesis, Myrmecia fulvipes queen
Journal = http://www.formicult...ra-iridomyrmex/

Heterotermes cf brevicatena termite pet/feeder journal = http://www.formicult...feeder-journal/


#1036 Offline CoolColJ - Posted December 12 2018 - 10:15 PM

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Summer 13th December 2018

 

Camponotus suffusus bendigensis 17-18mm queen1
20mm Test tube - in styrofoam and heat cable incubator
1 hatched egg, 2 eggs  - raw honey dish

 

Topped up her honey dish, and saw she laid another egg


Current ant colonies -
1) Opisthopsis Rufithorax (strobe ant), Melophorus Sp1. (furnace ant) red and black, Melophorus sp2. black and orange
Lots of Pheidole colonies....  Polyrhachis rufifemur, Camponotus suffusus bendingesis, Myrmecia fulvipes queen
Journal = http://www.formicult...ra-iridomyrmex/

Heterotermes cf brevicatena termite pet/feeder journal = http://www.formicult...feeder-journal/


#1037 Offline CoolColJ - Posted December 14 2018 - 2:53 AM

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Just came back from anting trip no. 2 -

Where walked over this certain road in my area, just before sunset at around 7:30pm, there were no ants apart from some Polyrhachis activity.

But when i came back here on the way back to my car at around 8pm after the sun had set there were Camponotus nigricep workers, then nigricep alates were landing around me.

They may have been attracted to my torchlight, and may not have been mated though :/

But it means these are flying elsewhere as well!

An hour later returned them, dumped them on top the workers on the grass, and even the majors started grooming them, while a worker dragged one :)

I saw a couple of drones, so maybe they fly even later at night...

 

As mentioned there were a nest of these large gold bum (some are silver) Polyrhachis, hairy and only slightly smaller than a P.ammon.

When it was dark they closed up shop and could not be seen, but at 7:30pm they were digging, and I saw 3 alates travel from one nest opening to another one 6 inches away.

Then a 4th one carried by a worker :) 

They could be flying tomorrow morning or soon.

 

https://www.facebook...hc_location=ufi

 

 

 

Summer 14th December 2018

 

Aphaenogaster longiceps 12-13mm queen2
16mm test tube - heat cable
20+ eggs, 2 brood boost pupa and 2 larvae

 

One pupa just went dark brown like overnight!

So it should eclose by tomorrow.


Edited by CoolColJ, December 14 2018 - 2:55 AM.

Current ant colonies -
1) Opisthopsis Rufithorax (strobe ant), Melophorus Sp1. (furnace ant) red and black, Melophorus sp2. black and orange
Lots of Pheidole colonies....  Polyrhachis rufifemur, Camponotus suffusus bendingesis, Myrmecia fulvipes queen
Journal = http://www.formicult...ra-iridomyrmex/

Heterotermes cf brevicatena termite pet/feeder journal = http://www.formicult...feeder-journal/


#1038 Offline CoolColJ - Posted December 14 2018 - 3:00 AM

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Opisthopsis Rufithorax (strobe ant) 10mm queen
Atom C nest inside circular outworld - tip ofheat cable pressed against side of nest
31+ workers, 9 cocoons, 10+? larvae, 20+ eggs

Oh, these girls are getting vicious now at >30 workers!
I dropped in two termite alates that decided to tandem run inside the nest and all hell broke loose.
Workers took the queen out pretty quickly, suprised me.
And the king stumbled outside, with a single worker charging and jumping him, and then spraying formic acid B)

 

I should have video it! Will next time :)


Current ant colonies -
1) Opisthopsis Rufithorax (strobe ant), Melophorus Sp1. (furnace ant) red and black, Melophorus sp2. black and orange
Lots of Pheidole colonies....  Polyrhachis rufifemur, Camponotus suffusus bendingesis, Myrmecia fulvipes queen
Journal = http://www.formicult...ra-iridomyrmex/

Heterotermes cf brevicatena termite pet/feeder journal = http://www.formicult...feeder-journal/


#1039 Offline CoolColJ - Posted December 14 2018 - 3:48 PM

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Well the Myrmecia nigocincta I am posting off on Monday - all her larvae have pupated, but without spinning a cocoon... and now it looks like the queen dumped all these pupa outside in the outworld apart from one.

And she ate the head on one pupa!

 

Yeap that is why bull ants are the hardest ants to keep and get going, they make lousy mothers, and need to learn...

 

That is why I prefer to get a queen with 1-2 workers already, you bypass all these issues, but that is also why they are also expensive with 1-2 workers :)


Current ant colonies -
1) Opisthopsis Rufithorax (strobe ant), Melophorus Sp1. (furnace ant) red and black, Melophorus sp2. black and orange
Lots of Pheidole colonies....  Polyrhachis rufifemur, Camponotus suffusus bendingesis, Myrmecia fulvipes queen
Journal = http://www.formicult...ra-iridomyrmex/

Heterotermes cf brevicatena termite pet/feeder journal = http://www.formicult...feeder-journal/


#1040 Offline YsTheAnt - Posted December 14 2018 - 4:08 PM

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Try forcefully dumping sand into her tube. They need it to cocoon.





Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: journal, opisthopsis rufithorax, strobe ant, camponotus, melophorus, furnace ant, pheidole, iridomyrmex, suffusus, polyrhachis, rufifemur, meat ant, antipodum, rhytidoponera, aphaenogaster, nigrocincta, aspera, myrmecia, bull ant, fulvipes

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