I'm a big fan of the old antscanada classic nests and picture frame formicariums in general.
The common theme I've been using is adding extra substrate for the ants to customize their nest a bit.
First up is a founding formicarium I made. I purchased these containers at Hobby Lobby for $1 each.
I poured Hydrostone at the bottom.
Then, I added different substrates.
Here is a queen carpenter ant. I found her inside her founding chamber, so I simply placed the whole founding chamber in the container.
(Up close view)
The Hydrostone maintains moisture well, and poking a couple holes in the cork lid retains enough humidity so that you only need to add water once a week or two.
Here is another concept for very small queens.
This picture frame comes with a roughly 2 mm space between the thick pieces of glass to hold the picture.
I put Hydrostone along the sides, and filled the middle with dirt.
This Brachymyrmex queen dug out a founding chamber, and was observed drinking from the Hydrostone walls.
The formicarium can be placed in water, or it can be watered every few days for hydration.
Then, I made two full size formicariums. The first was made with the clay casting method using hydrostone.
Then, I lined the Chambers with a Hydrostone and fine sand mixture. I really liked the look of that mixture, and it observed water better. I then added pebbles, fine sand, clay, and bark for the ants to customize.
Kind of a crude first try, but hopefully it looks a bit nicer next time.
I'm a bit prouder of my second creation. I kept mixing fine sand with the Hydrostone, and poured six miniture nests using the clay casting method.
I then put them inside this lazy Suzanne picture frame. I connected them with tubing inside. Then, I connected one nest to the outworld on top.
Everything is solidified with Hydrostone, so the ants cannot burrow into it.
Everything is still smudged and sticky with silicone. I'll get better pictures when I move my recently cought aphenogastor colony.
Edited by Ants4fun, August 9 2018 - 9:49 PM.