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CatsnAnts ant journal / journey

ants journal antlove camponotus subbarbatus hi antfarm antkeeping

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#1 Offline CatsnAnts - Posted June 16 2018 - 9:25 AM

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Hello everyone! Hope you’ve all had a great time finding and caring for queen ants this year! I just recently joined this forum and I’ve decide to start a journal on my favored (just caught 3 days ago) Camponotus subbarbatus! They are super gorgeous ants, and I’ve never seen them before! Here’s a photo of her from when I first got her:
102E7D1B-D97E-439F-B788-6D63B27B1A00_zps
(also, if you’re wondering, that mite on her leg fell off)

She has just laid her first egg today, which is very surprising because normally it takes 1 to 2 weeks for Camponotus species to lay eggs. I have also been trying to start a colony for three years now (including this year). I’ve done my research, but every little bit of information helps! Off on a journey of wonderful antkeeping!

Also, I have a bunch of Tetramorium immigran queens that I just found this morning! I am hoping that at least one out of the bunch that I caught is fertile, lol. Here’s a picture of one of the ants, sorry it’s not the best quality!
D1C056F5-1AD2-4728-BB0C-E494E2B3FA15_zps

I will hopefully have another update soon (like in a week or two), so keep checking back! Happy ant keeping!

Edited by CatsnAnts, June 17 2018 - 5:08 PM.

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5 queen Temnothorax ambiguus (founding)
11 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis mississippiensis (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis impressa (founding)
1 queen Lasius interjectus (with 30 host workers)
x3 1 queen Camponotus subbarbatus (founding)
1 queen Strumigebys pilinasis (colony of about 30 workers)
1 queen Ponera pennsylvanica (founding)
x2 1 queen Pheidole bicarinata (founding)
1 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (~170 workers) ... also have 2 termite colonies.

#2 Offline CatsnAnts - Posted June 17 2018 - 5:55 PM

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Back with another update! As you can see, I changed the name of the journal because, well... I kind of just remembered about the ant colonies that I took from my back yard that I had stored away. TBH I though they had all died, but when I dug out there setup in our storage room, they were still there, all five queens with all eight workers, so ya. I actually found three separate colonies and took a few queens and from each, but only workers from one, and they actually have been getting along, which is surprising. Usually queens from separate colonies colonies kill each other, but I’m not going to get my hopes up. I currently have them in a temporary setup with some food (honey water and fruit flys). They immediately drug the first fruit fly into the tube and hopefully they will eat it. I also forgot to mention that they have an enormous egg pile. Here’s a picture of them! Also!!! I need a name for this colony!!! Sorry, I’m still trying to get the hang of this macro lens thing... I will show The outworld in the next update.
A607C4CD-1B83-4721-A8A6-26CB2F2A81EB_zps

Also, here’s a picture of my Camponotus subbarbatus and her egg, I would also like to give this queen herself a name as well as her whole colony a name. The reason why she specifically is getting a name as well as the whole colony is because she is a single queen, and my other two colonies (Tetramorium and species mentioned above) do not have just one queen yet, I’m still deciding on which tetramorium queen I want to keep, then we’ll give her a name.
B8967D53-D85C-4BD8-BD5F-8882E1F348B3_zps

So basically, all of my tetramorium queens are laying eggs, and I really don’t know what I should do with all of them, so I think I might release some of them (or a lot of them).
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5 queen Temnothorax ambiguus (founding)
11 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis mississippiensis (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis impressa (founding)
1 queen Lasius interjectus (with 30 host workers)
x3 1 queen Camponotus subbarbatus (founding)
1 queen Strumigebys pilinasis (colony of about 30 workers)
1 queen Ponera pennsylvanica (founding)
x2 1 queen Pheidole bicarinata (founding)
1 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (~170 workers) ... also have 2 termite colonies.

#3 Offline CatsnAnts - Posted June 19 2018 - 9:45 AM

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Okay, so not expecting to update this soon, but something kind of strange and cool has happened. First things first though. I released my captive colony of Formica pallidelfulva into the wild (the one with five queens) because they just weren’t doing the best. Then, four minutes after I released them, 40 ft away on my patio I found a queen of the same species (Formica pallidelfulva). I am pretty positive though that she is not from the colony that I released because she was spotless, where as the queens I released freaked out and got covered in dirt and honey. Anyways, I have decided that I am only going to keep colonies that I start from queen ants after nuptial flights from now on, since I think it can be very disturbing to an existing colony to remove it. So that’s that. I hope she lays eggs. Here’s a picture of her:
51F027C0-C439-4FBC-A9BB-5F062AE545D7_zps

Also, while I’m writing, I might as well tell you about the other queens. So my Camponotus subbarbatus queen still only has one egg, but she is tending to it like crazy. I just think to myself that there should probably be a second egg by now, but I guess time will tell. Also, I have decided to name her Topa after her topaz colored Gaster.

All of my tetramorium queens are rapidly pumping out eggs at the moment, but I’ve decided that I’m going to keep two colonies, I just don’t know which two yet.

On a side note, my new queen (Formica pallidelfulva) needs a name too, so if you have suggestions, please tell me!
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5 queen Temnothorax ambiguus (founding)
11 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis mississippiensis (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis impressa (founding)
1 queen Lasius interjectus (with 30 host workers)
x3 1 queen Camponotus subbarbatus (founding)
1 queen Strumigebys pilinasis (colony of about 30 workers)
1 queen Ponera pennsylvanica (founding)
x2 1 queen Pheidole bicarinata (founding)
1 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (~170 workers) ... also have 2 termite colonies.

#4 Offline CatsnAnts - Posted June 19 2018 - 2:49 PM

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Just a quick little update in saying that I found another Formica pallidelfulva with wings on it, so that confirms that it was a freshly mated queen, all good! I don’t think I’m going to keep it though because it probably isn’t mated, but who knows...
5 queen Temnothorax ambiguus (founding)
11 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis mississippiensis (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis impressa (founding)
1 queen Lasius interjectus (with 30 host workers)
x3 1 queen Camponotus subbarbatus (founding)
1 queen Strumigebys pilinasis (colony of about 30 workers)
1 queen Ponera pennsylvanica (founding)
x2 1 queen Pheidole bicarinata (founding)
1 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (~170 workers) ... also have 2 termite colonies.

#5 Offline CatsnAnts - Posted June 19 2018 - 4:05 PM

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Okay, so I released the winged ant queen that I found because I found another one without wings. I posted an ID thread and she is from the pallidelfulva group, but maybe not the exact same species as my Formica pallidelfulva. Here’s a picture of her:
9E83A386-595C-4229-83C0-07ADC1C39B8C_zps

Also, here’s a list of my current ants:
Name: Species:
Topa Camponotus subbarbatus
? x7 Tetramorium immigrans
? Formica pallidelfulva
? Unknown, from pallidelfulva group
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5 queen Temnothorax ambiguus (founding)
11 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis mississippiensis (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis impressa (founding)
1 queen Lasius interjectus (with 30 host workers)
x3 1 queen Camponotus subbarbatus (founding)
1 queen Strumigebys pilinasis (colony of about 30 workers)
1 queen Ponera pennsylvanica (founding)
x2 1 queen Pheidole bicarinata (founding)
1 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (~170 workers) ... also have 2 termite colonies.

#6 Offline CatsnAnts - Posted June 20 2018 - 1:09 PM

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Hey everyone! Just wanted to do a quick little update in saying that all four of my tetramorium colonies have MASSIVE amounts of eggs so far. I currently have three colonies with one Tetramorium queen each, and one colony with four tetramorium queens. So far, they are all doing well, and I hope to eventually narrow down my selection to one colony. Here’s a picture of one of them:
36948A7D-E936-44B5-9BEF-8C55E514CAF3_zps
Sorry for the bad quality, but I have them is some glass containers that distort shapes, I am going to order test tubes soon. Also, for my macro lens, all that I am using is a simple flashlight lense taped over my iphone’s camera. It really does work great! It’s just the glass kind of screws it up, so when I get the new test tubes, the pictures will be a lot better quality!
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5 queen Temnothorax ambiguus (founding)
11 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis mississippiensis (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis impressa (founding)
1 queen Lasius interjectus (with 30 host workers)
x3 1 queen Camponotus subbarbatus (founding)
1 queen Strumigebys pilinasis (colony of about 30 workers)
1 queen Ponera pennsylvanica (founding)
x2 1 queen Pheidole bicarinata (founding)
1 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (~170 workers) ... also have 2 termite colonies.

#7 Offline CatsnAnts - Posted June 29 2018 - 6:55 AM

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Hello everyone! I’ve decided to do another update, a BIG update. So for starters, I currently have seven colonies with six different species, here’s the list:
1. Camponotus subbarbatus
2. Formica pallidelfulva
3. Formica ?
4. Tetramorium immigrans
5. Tetramorium immigrans
6. ? ?
7. Lasius neglectus

Here’s some pictures in the order that I listed them above (there’s only a photo of one of the Tetramorium immigrans colonies, and also, I switched from photobucket to imgur, way better quality!):













Okay, so let’s start off with Topa, my Camponotus subbarbatus queen. She is up to four eggs, but has not layed any eggs now for five days. She keeps all four in one pile, so I think that means that she is fertile. I guess only time will tell, and she is also now tied for my favorite species with my Lasius neglectus.

Onto my Formica pallidelfulva. She has a hefty amount of eggs, which is good! She is keeping them all in one nice neat pile and is tending to them closely, although she gets spooked easily.

My other Formica species is doing well as well. She has a few eggs that are all in a pile and are being closely watched. She seems to be fertile.

My two Tetramorium colonies (I used to have more, but I released a lot) are doing very well, they already have larvae, and a bunch of it. I think I am eventually going to just brood boost one of the queens and release the other.

My unknown queen is doing good. She keeps all of her eggs in a pile and tends to them very closely. If anyone could ID her, it would be much appreciated.

Last is my tied for favorite, Lasius neglectus colony. She seems like she has no eggs in the picture, but really, she has about 8 on the cotton. She keeps them in a pile and watches them closely.

Overall, all of my queens seem to be fertile and healthy, so we will se how things end up in the next update. Also, if you have any suggestions for colony names, please let me know. (I have decided that the only queen I am going to name specifically is Topa, my Camponotus subbarbatus colony, but the colony in general still needs a name.) Thanks for taking the time to read my journal!

Edited by CatsnAnts, June 29 2018 - 8:15 AM.

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5 queen Temnothorax ambiguus (founding)
11 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis mississippiensis (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis impressa (founding)
1 queen Lasius interjectus (with 30 host workers)
x3 1 queen Camponotus subbarbatus (founding)
1 queen Strumigebys pilinasis (colony of about 30 workers)
1 queen Ponera pennsylvanica (founding)
x2 1 queen Pheidole bicarinata (founding)
1 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (~170 workers) ... also have 2 termite colonies.

#8 Offline Ant_Dude2908 - Posted June 29 2018 - 7:05 AM

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The unknown black queen is Formica. How big is she? Nice journal by the way! Also, where are you located?

Good luck!

Edited by Ant_Dude2908, June 29 2018 - 7:07 AM.

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#9 Offline CatsnAnts - Posted June 29 2018 - 7:36 AM

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The unknown black queen is Formica. How big is she? Nice journal by the way! Also, where are you located?

Good luck!

Thanks =)

She is exactly 10 mm long, and I live in Southern Indiana, United States.
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5 queen Temnothorax ambiguus (founding)
11 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis mississippiensis (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis impressa (founding)
1 queen Lasius interjectus (with 30 host workers)
x3 1 queen Camponotus subbarbatus (founding)
1 queen Strumigebys pilinasis (colony of about 30 workers)
1 queen Ponera pennsylvanica (founding)
x2 1 queen Pheidole bicarinata (founding)
1 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (~170 workers) ... also have 2 termite colonies.

#10 Offline AntsAreUs - Posted June 29 2018 - 7:44 AM

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Lasius neglectus isn't in the US.


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#11 Offline MegaMyrmex - Posted June 29 2018 - 8:02 AM

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Nice formica sp! Good luck!
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Spoiler

#12 Offline CatsnAnts - Posted June 29 2018 - 8:10 AM

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Lasius neglectus isn't in the US.


Oh... well, I will post a good picture of her soon to see if anybody can identify. Also, this kind of relieves me because their colonies can get massive and are known to cause lots of damage, so thanks!
5 queen Temnothorax ambiguus (founding)
11 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis mississippiensis (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis impressa (founding)
1 queen Lasius interjectus (with 30 host workers)
x3 1 queen Camponotus subbarbatus (founding)
1 queen Strumigebys pilinasis (colony of about 30 workers)
1 queen Ponera pennsylvanica (founding)
x2 1 queen Pheidole bicarinata (founding)
1 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (~170 workers) ... also have 2 termite colonies.

#13 Offline CatsnAnts - Posted June 29 2018 - 8:16 AM

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Nice formica sp! Good luck!


Thanks! =)
5 queen Temnothorax ambiguus (founding)
11 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis mississippiensis (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis impressa (founding)
1 queen Lasius interjectus (with 30 host workers)
x3 1 queen Camponotus subbarbatus (founding)
1 queen Strumigebys pilinasis (colony of about 30 workers)
1 queen Ponera pennsylvanica (founding)
x2 1 queen Pheidole bicarinata (founding)
1 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (~170 workers) ... also have 2 termite colonies.

#14 Offline CatsnAnts - Posted June 29 2018 - 8:25 AM

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Also, I was doing some more research, and it turns out that my Lasius species is actually a Lasius alienus queen, so yay because I’ve always wanted a queen of this species!
5 queen Temnothorax ambiguus (founding)
11 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis mississippiensis (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis impressa (founding)
1 queen Lasius interjectus (with 30 host workers)
x3 1 queen Camponotus subbarbatus (founding)
1 queen Strumigebys pilinasis (colony of about 30 workers)
1 queen Ponera pennsylvanica (founding)
x2 1 queen Pheidole bicarinata (founding)
1 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (~170 workers) ... also have 2 termite colonies.

#15 Offline CatsnAnts - Posted June 29 2018 - 6:11 PM

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So I was doing MORE research, and now I’m torn on whether she’s a Lasius flavus, or a Lasius alienus... I guess I will just have to wait for workers...

Edited by CatsnAnts, June 29 2018 - 6:40 PM.

5 queen Temnothorax ambiguus (founding)
11 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis mississippiensis (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis impressa (founding)
1 queen Lasius interjectus (with 30 host workers)
x3 1 queen Camponotus subbarbatus (founding)
1 queen Strumigebys pilinasis (colony of about 30 workers)
1 queen Ponera pennsylvanica (founding)
x2 1 queen Pheidole bicarinata (founding)
1 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (~170 workers) ... also have 2 termite colonies.

#16 Offline Ant_Dude2908 - Posted June 30 2018 - 5:51 AM

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The unknown black queen is Formica. How big is she? Nice journal by the way! Also, where are you located?
Good luck!

Thanks =)
She is exactly 10 mm long, and I live in Southern Indiana, United States.
Probably Formica neogagates then.
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#17 Offline CatsnAnts - Posted June 30 2018 - 7:35 AM

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The unknown black queen is Formica. How big is she? Nice journal by the way! Also, where are you located?
Good luck!

Thanks =)
She is exactly 10 mm long, and I live in Southern Indiana, United States.
Probably Formica neogagates then.
Thanks for the ID!

Edited by CatsnAnts, June 30 2018 - 12:50 PM.

5 queen Temnothorax ambiguus (founding)
11 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis mississippiensis (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis impressa (founding)
1 queen Lasius interjectus (with 30 host workers)
x3 1 queen Camponotus subbarbatus (founding)
1 queen Strumigebys pilinasis (colony of about 30 workers)
1 queen Ponera pennsylvanica (founding)
x2 1 queen Pheidole bicarinata (founding)
1 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (~170 workers) ... also have 2 termite colonies.

#18 Offline CatsnAnts - Posted July 1 2018 - 7:39 AM

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Just a quick little update without pictures! I’m really excited because I finally worked up the courage to ask my parents (yes, I’m 14 years old) if I could by some test tubes, and they said yes! I got the 16 x 150 mm kind with borosilicate glass 10 pack! So yay! All of my queen ants right now are in very temporary setups until their first workers arrive, then they will be moving into their new test tubes! Except maybe a few exceptions might be moving in early, I’m just worried that they will eat their brood.

Topa, my Camponotus subbarbatus, is doing pretty well with six eggs and they are all in one, nice, neat pile.

My Formica pallidelfulva is doing good to with about ten eggs I think? She has them all in one pile, but is a nervous wreck when I peek in on her.

My other Formica species from the pallidelfulva group is doing well, she has about six eggs in a pile. She might be one of the exceptions that I have to move early because she is getting some mold in her temporary setup.

My two Tetramorium immigrans queens are doing GREAT! They both are developing so quickly it’s unreal. They both now have a lot of brood.

My Formica neogagates (thanks Ant_Dude2908 for identifying) is doing well! She has a nice sized pile of eggs and is always caring for them!

My Lasius cf. Flavus/Alienus (I don’t know which one it is) is doing well. It’s hard to tell how many eggs she has because they are all on the cotton ball, but I can tell you that she has a lot!

Edited by CatsnAnts, July 1 2018 - 3:14 PM.

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5 queen Temnothorax ambiguus (founding)
11 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis mississippiensis (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis impressa (founding)
1 queen Lasius interjectus (with 30 host workers)
x3 1 queen Camponotus subbarbatus (founding)
1 queen Strumigebys pilinasis (colony of about 30 workers)
1 queen Ponera pennsylvanica (founding)
x2 1 queen Pheidole bicarinata (founding)
1 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (~170 workers) ... also have 2 termite colonies.

#19 Offline CatsnAnts - Posted July 5 2018 - 7:24 AM

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Back with another update! I have LOADS to tell you! So I’m going to start of by saying that I caught a new queen this past Monday! She is a Crematogaster cerasi queen! I love how their Gaster looks like a heart, and the great news is that she has a nice sized pile of about ten eggs already! Take a look for yourself:

I really can’t wait to start a colony of these ants! They just seem so cool, and everybody always talks about how they want one! So yay! (Also, she is he first queen to get to go in a new test tube, that’s why the pictures look better.)

My Camponotus subbarbatus queen has got her FIRST larvae! I so excited! I’ve been waiting for this day to come, I was worried because it was taking so long, but I guess that’s normal for Camponotus! She also has around six eggs! This is the colony I am most looking forward to raising!

I know it’s hard to tell because of the quality, but the brood closest to the camera is the larvae!

My two Tetramorium immigrans queens are really just bookin’ it! They both have a HUGE amount of brood compared to everybody else I have. I’m iffy still on if I want to keep them...


My Formica neogagates is doing well, although she is REALLY skittish. She has a nice sized egg pile and is keeping a close eye on them. Except for when I look at her...


My Formica pallidelfulva is doing well! She has lots of larvae and seems to be a very prolific queen! I still don’t know if I want to keep her yet though...


My other Formica from the pallidelfulva group is doing good! She has a nice sized pile of eggs, although I don’t know if she has any larvae yet.


My last queen ant, my Lasius something, is doing well with a good pile of eggs! I really wish that she wouldn’t lay them on the cotton though, because it really makes them difficult to see.


On a last note, I would like to say that I am going to keep four, maybe five colonies at the most. I am definitely keeping Topa, my Camponotus subbarbatus, but do you people have any suggestions on the other colonies you think I should keep?

Edited by CatsnAnts, July 6 2018 - 7:23 AM.

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5 queen Temnothorax ambiguus (founding)
11 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis mississippiensis (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis impressa (founding)
1 queen Lasius interjectus (with 30 host workers)
x3 1 queen Camponotus subbarbatus (founding)
1 queen Strumigebys pilinasis (colony of about 30 workers)
1 queen Ponera pennsylvanica (founding)
x2 1 queen Pheidole bicarinata (founding)
1 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (~170 workers) ... also have 2 termite colonies.

#20 Offline CatsnAnts - Posted July 6 2018 - 12:59 PM

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I think I’ve made up my mind (but knowing me, I’ll probably change it). I have decided to keep these five colonies:
Camponotus subbarbatus (Topa)
Crematogaster cerasi
Lasius cf. alienus/flavus
Formica pallidelfulva
Formica neogagates

That also means I will be releasing my other queens once they get workers so the workers can help them with the move. I will dig a little nest in the ground for each of the colonies I am releasing, and then let them take their time to get used to their new home... It’s sad, I know, but I really can’t overwhelm myself right now with to many colonies since I am going to be a freshman this year.
5 queen Temnothorax ambiguus (founding)
11 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis mississippiensis (founding)
1 queen Colobopsis impressa (founding)
1 queen Lasius interjectus (with 30 host workers)
x3 1 queen Camponotus subbarbatus (founding)
1 queen Strumigebys pilinasis (colony of about 30 workers)
1 queen Ponera pennsylvanica (founding)
x2 1 queen Pheidole bicarinata (founding)
1 queen Temnothorax curvispinosus (~170 workers) ... also have 2 termite colonies.





Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: ants, journal, antlove, camponotus, subbarbatus, hi, antfarm, antkeeping

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