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DJoseph98’s Ant Colonies


81 replies to this topic

#1 Offline DJoseph98 - Posted June 14 2019 - 7:37 PM

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I’ll post more pictures as soon as I can find a way to get the right lighting. I only have a cheap phone and a clip on macro lens.

 

So, here’s my current list of colonies:

            1x Camponotus chromaiodes

                        Founded 4/16/19, collected in Pikeville, Ky. As of 6/4/19, she has pupa and a sizable brood pile.

 

            1x Camponotus herculaneus (I think, it looks different from my C. chromaiodes)

Founded 5/1/19, collected in Pikeville, KY. As of 6/4/19, she has just eggs. I think this is due to frequent disturbances and this has stopped.

yZkGXEf.jpg

            1x Camponotus nearcticus

Founded 5/1/19, collected in Pikeville, KY. As of 6/4/19, no brood at all. Lots of cotton pulling still, fed some honey on 6/4/19 to keep it going. Still has wings.

 

            1x Forelius mccooki (or F. pruinosis) 3 queens in a single tube.

Founded 6/10/19, collected in Van Lear, KY (All three).They had some eggs as of 6/14/19. Unsure of exact identity but I will hopefully fix this soon. Shouldn’t matter since these are closely related.

vXoH5XC.jpg

            1x Monomorium minimum

Founded 6/12/19, collected in Van Lear, KY. She has a batch of eggs already as of 6/14/19. Only one queen so far but I will add queens as I find them (hopefully).

vHW43Q4.jpg

            1x Pheidole sp.

Founded 5/24/19, collected in Van Lear, KY. She has no eggs as of 6/4/19 and is brachypterous…

See this topic for more info -> http://www.formicult...ith-this-queen/

3KXqNUe.jpg?1

 

            3x Tetramorium immigrans (Monogynous groupings)

                        1st: Founded 5/29/19, no eggs as of 6/4/19 (Collected in Van Lear, KY)                                         

                        2nd: Founded 6/6/19, no eggs yet. (Collected in downtown Lexington, KY)                                   

                        3rd: Founded 6/6/19, no eggs yet. (Collected in downtown Lexington, KY)

 

            1x Tetramorium immigrans (Three queens in a pleometrotic group)

Founded 6/7/19, all three collected in Van Lear, KY. No aggression between the three just lots of antenna touching, one still had wings. Due to pleometrotic behavior, I understand that in the end there can only be one. I brood boosted this colony with six darkening pupa, four white pupa, and five large larvae. As of 6/14/19 they had four workers from the pupa, a fresh batch of eggs, and had consumed a termite worker.  

Z8DER4V.jpg


Edited by DJoseph98, June 15 2019 - 8:45 PM.

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Current Colonies

1 x Camponotus nearcticus (Monogynous), 1 x Crematogaster cerasi (Monogynous), 1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Polygynous Two-Queen), 1 x Formica cf. pallidefulva (Monogynous, single worker),

1 x Lasius cf. americanus (Pleometrotic Founding, now Monogynous), 1 x Tetramorium immigrans (Monogynous)

 

Current Founding Units

1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Monogynous)

 

Up-To-Date as of 9/15/2020

 


#2 Offline DJoseph98 - Posted June 16 2019 - 6:43 PM

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Caught three more M. minimum queens and added them to the tube with the first.

Current Colonies

1 x Camponotus nearcticus (Monogynous), 1 x Crematogaster cerasi (Monogynous), 1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Polygynous Two-Queen), 1 x Formica cf. pallidefulva (Monogynous, single worker),

1 x Lasius cf. americanus (Pleometrotic Founding, now Monogynous), 1 x Tetramorium immigrans (Monogynous)

 

Current Founding Units

1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Monogynous)

 

Up-To-Date as of 9/15/2020

 


#3 Offline DJoseph98 - Posted June 27 2019 - 6:39 PM

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Update 6/27/19:

C. chromaiodes has first nanitic! Been feeding lots of honey though it seems the queen is eating it all... She's is becoming physogastric but that may be the honey.
C. herculaneus has all pupae and several eggs

F. pruinosis three queen colony had a queen die, but they have a large brood pile.

M. minimum group doesn't have any eggs and they don't seem to be doing well so I added some wild workers who immediately accepted them. Hopefully will end for the best.

Pheidole spp brachypterous queen died, I just checked on her and she was covered in green mold. COD unknown since it could have grown post mortem (hadn't checked on her for a while).

T. immigrans monogynous queens all lack eggs but one of them from Lexington, KY has a HUGE batch of eggs and is physogastric.

T. immigrans (pleomtrotic and brood boosted) has eight workers from brood boost and huge pile of their own eggs and larvae! All queens seem healthy and unharmed no signs of aggression still.

 

C. nearcticus queen still lacks any brood at all, so pretty sure she is infertile

 

I have begun several new colonies in the founding stages. 

 

Crematogaster spp monogynous founding, already has a bundle of eggs

Formica cf pallidefulva who is very physogastric and has several eggs

A very dark colored Pheidole queen which I have not identified yet so I will update on that ASAP.

Three of what I believe to be Pheidole dentata. I kept them together initially and they huddled together and behaved like they were completely okay with each others presence so I left them in the same founding setup. 

Found one more Pheidole dentata  tonight that I will add to their setup in the morning.

Finally, I have found what I believe to be Lasius americanus though it is a bit early in the season. So far she has only been cotton tugging and still has her wings. 

Started second Forelius pruinosis colony which was four queens but one died. Checked on them the next day and it appears that her "sisters" ate what was left and had a large pile of eggs already. Will combine with the original colony as soon as both groups have nanitics.


Edited by DJoseph98, June 27 2019 - 6:41 PM.

Current Colonies

1 x Camponotus nearcticus (Monogynous), 1 x Crematogaster cerasi (Monogynous), 1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Polygynous Two-Queen), 1 x Formica cf. pallidefulva (Monogynous, single worker),

1 x Lasius cf. americanus (Pleometrotic Founding, now Monogynous), 1 x Tetramorium immigrans (Monogynous)

 

Current Founding Units

1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Monogynous)

 

Up-To-Date as of 9/15/2020

 


#4 Offline DJoseph98 - Posted July 2 2019 - 3:58 PM

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Update 7/2/19:

Camponotus chromaiodes has four workers! I fed them the body of a small grasshopper and some honey, they seemed thrilled with the protein.HvKHXA7.jpg

 

Camponotus herculaneus hasn't changed any but I finally got a good photo.

cqaQmUy.jpg

Forelius cf pruinosis ALL queens and brood of the first group/founding colony I setup have died. At first all but one queen died, and the others looked like they had been eaten (recycling?). The second colony founding group has had a similar situation but there is one queen left with a large brood batch. Her sister queens look like they had been recycled as well.TIB0mWd.jpg

Crematogast spp. has a good size brood pile. No pic.

 

Formica cf pallidefulva has six eggs and is still cotton pulling strangely.

uWMwiEk.jpg

Pheidole dentata three queen group has brood pile (unable to count)  and they seem to be getting along well still. Two queens seemed lighter than the other but look identical in most other lighting.v5qankD.jpg

 

Pheidole dentata two queen group is doing quite well (I found a second queen the morning of 6/28/19 and added her to the other queen's tube). They got along great, almost instantly and they have a brood pile.l77WlPl.jpg

 

Lasius americanus still has not laid any eggs. Id may not be accurate so no pics until I get an ID confirmation.

 

T. immigrans Lexington Collected Queen (Queen #1) has finally laid a sizable pile of eggs after almost a month!

VgijVoR.jpg

 

T. immigrans Lexington Collected Queen (Queen #2) has a huge pile of larvae (no eggs or pupae visible).

0UXY2dD.jpg

 

T. immigrans Van Lear Collected Queen has not laid any eggs still so no pics.

T. immigrans three queen pleometrotic and brood boosted colony (whereby to be referred to as The Fates) have eggs, small larvae, a few pupae, and eight workers. They were fed today a grasshopper leg and some honey which they immediately took. No good pics. 

 

M. minimum  do not have any eggs yet that I can see but he queens drank quite a bit of honey.

Hro4sI5.jpg

 

I moved both into homemade plaster formicariums which seem to have become WAY too humid. They liked it much better than their tubes though. This is why I couldn't get a good picture of The Fates.

 

The containers are 5 cm tall, diameter of 4 cm. I will change the designs some to help improve airflow, reduce humidity, and increase the space utilization for chambers.

eSQxUza.jpg


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Current Colonies

1 x Camponotus nearcticus (Monogynous), 1 x Crematogaster cerasi (Monogynous), 1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Polygynous Two-Queen), 1 x Formica cf. pallidefulva (Monogynous, single worker),

1 x Lasius cf. americanus (Pleometrotic Founding, now Monogynous), 1 x Tetramorium immigrans (Monogynous)

 

Current Founding Units

1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Monogynous)

 

Up-To-Date as of 9/15/2020

 


#5 Offline ANTdrew - Posted July 2 2019 - 5:03 PM

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I like the name The Fates. Reminds me of the three Norns from Norse mythology Urd, Verdandi, and Skuld.
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"The ants are a people not strong, yet they prepare their meat in the summer." Prov. 30:25   I <3 tiny ants


#6 Offline Ant_Dude2908 - Posted July 2 2019 - 6:26 PM

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Nice ants! Btw the Camponotus herculeanus are just Camponotus chromaiodes, but with a rarer gene that gives her the high red. I have found this as well.
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#7 Offline DJoseph98 - Posted July 2 2019 - 7:07 PM

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Nice ants! Btw the Camponotus herculeanus are just Camponotus chromaiodes, but with a rarer gene that gives her the high red. I have found this as well.

In that case which would be the most appropriate name for taxonomy's sake? The two queens seemed to have different shades on their gasters when I first collected them. I'll take some pictures of my established colony without the red vinyl to get a better idea

Current Colonies

1 x Camponotus nearcticus (Monogynous), 1 x Crematogaster cerasi (Monogynous), 1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Polygynous Two-Queen), 1 x Formica cf. pallidefulva (Monogynous, single worker),

1 x Lasius cf. americanus (Pleometrotic Founding, now Monogynous), 1 x Tetramorium immigrans (Monogynous)

 

Current Founding Units

1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Monogynous)

 

Up-To-Date as of 9/15/2020

 


#8 Offline DJoseph98 - Posted July 2 2019 - 7:11 PM

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I like the name The Fates. Reminds me of the three Norns from Norse mythology Urd, Verdandi, and Skuld.

Thanks! I was thinking of the greek Fates to be honest. I was also thinking of naming them the Gorgons since with multiple queen T. immigrans founding things tend to get ugly (pardon my pun).
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Current Colonies

1 x Camponotus nearcticus (Monogynous), 1 x Crematogaster cerasi (Monogynous), 1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Polygynous Two-Queen), 1 x Formica cf. pallidefulva (Monogynous, single worker),

1 x Lasius cf. americanus (Pleometrotic Founding, now Monogynous), 1 x Tetramorium immigrans (Monogynous)

 

Current Founding Units

1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Monogynous)

 

Up-To-Date as of 9/15/2020

 


#9 Offline Ant_Dude2908 - Posted July 3 2019 - 6:06 AM

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Nice ants! Btw the Camponotus herculeanus are just Camponotus chromaiodes, but with a rarer gene that gives her the high red. I have found this as well.

In that case which would be the most appropriate name for taxonomy's sake? The two queens seemed to have different shades on their gasters when I first collected them. I'll take some pictures of my established colony without the red vinyl to get a better idea

Just Camponotus chromaiodes.

#10 Offline DJoseph98 - Posted July 8 2019 - 5:55 PM

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Update 7/8/19:

 

There was an incident due to some miscommunication with a friend that ended up placing my shoebox with my founding colonies in the sun that led to some flooding and death.

 

Camponotus chromaiodes (The first one I founded) now has six workers. No more pupae, but they have a pile of eggs and some small larvae. They have been happily accepting pieces of grasshopper and locust as well as plenty of honey.

 

Camponotus chromaiodes (Formerly misidentified as C. herculaneus) has devoured her larvae and eggs. Only her six pupae are left... I am unsure if I should take her pupae and give it to the first colony I have if she is eating her brood this much. 

 

Forelius cf. pruinosis has sizable brood pile but the bodies of her fallen comrades caused a mold outbreak on the cotton. I may try encouraging her to move tubes to prevent it from spreading to her brood.

 

Crematogaster spp. has a large brood pile with several large larvae that look ready to pupate!

 

Formica cf pallidefulva has passed away. Most likely from heat exhaustion, though I don't quite understand how she succumbed but other did not.

 

Pheidole dentata colonies (three queen and two queen) both have more brood! Since I want to have a colony with five queens (they weren't together originally because they were started at different times) I may try placing test tubes together when they have pupae. That way there is too much brood to abandon or that eventually the callow workers will meet when they eclose and share a colony identity.

 

Lasius neoniger (formerly misidentified as Lasius americanus) has three eggs but she might not be fertile still.

 

Lasius neoniger #2 (Collected in Georgetown, KY) dealate found on 4th of July, found a second but she passed away recently as well though not by any of my actions.

 

Tetramorium immigrans Queens

Lex Queen #1 has had a mold takeover her brood, and she seems to have given up (I don't blame her). I will allow her to pass on peacefully, so on this journal I say she has passed on.

Lex Queen #2 (now just Lex Queen) has sizable brood pile, with some pupae!

Van Lear Queen is dead. I think she was sterile.

Fates are doing well and have a sizable appetite for protein (Spider legs, grasshopper parts, etc). They are still happy in their little plaster formicaria. All three queens alive.

 

Monomorium minimum colony had a breakout! I must not have fitted the lid back on very well and all the workers escaped leaving behind the queens... They were not very loyal subjects. I placed all three queens into a test tube again since they didn't have any brood after feeding them honey again. I found three more queens on two separate occasions. The first occasion I found one and placed her in a tube of her own. The second I placed the two I found in with the original three. The five group shall be the Monomorium minimum Penta. The other shall be referred to as the monogynous founding group (Founded 7/3/19) which already has a sizable brood pile! 

The plan for this queen is to start a colony with the monogynous founding style and add the other queens when she gets nanitics (if they don’t start their own by that time). I guess when I added queens constantly during the founding stage previously it had put too much stress for them to rear brood so this is kind of my way to recover. And the added workers didn’t seem to help much since they abandoned ship to locate their old colony.

 

Solenopsis molesta five queen colony founded last night, all getting along very well! Will do some research to figure out what exactly this species is like to keep.

 

Overall, this leaves me with Twelve Test Tubes occupied and One Formicaria Occupied. Assuming combining the P. dentata colonies and the M. minimum groups goes well, I will have Eleven Colonies total by the end of it all.


Edited by DJoseph98, July 8 2019 - 5:55 PM.

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Current Colonies

1 x Camponotus nearcticus (Monogynous), 1 x Crematogaster cerasi (Monogynous), 1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Polygynous Two-Queen), 1 x Formica cf. pallidefulva (Monogynous, single worker),

1 x Lasius cf. americanus (Pleometrotic Founding, now Monogynous), 1 x Tetramorium immigrans (Monogynous)

 

Current Founding Units

1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Monogynous)

 

Up-To-Date as of 9/15/2020

 


#11 Offline DJoseph98 - Posted July 18 2019 - 9:22 AM

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Update 7/18/19:

Camponotus chromaiodes #1 is doing well, I moved them into a tub and tube setup. Will leave them alone for a while so they can thrive without interference. I gave them three pupae. They devoured the one that was becoming dark (they treated it weird from the start) but they treated the paler ones as brood from the start.

 

Camponotus chromaidoes “H” is not doing too well. She left a few pupae to rot (I still don’t understand how so I gave the not rotting ones to the colony I mentioned above). I provided some protein and honey for her and she has already laid another egg so maybe it’s not too late. I will try and get her in a new tube so that she doesn’t risk a bacterial takeover.

 

Forelius cf. pruinosis is doing okay but some white mold is spreading across the tube. I expect brood to eclose in the next five days or so, but I will provide another tube so that she can move away from the spreading mold as soon as possible before it takes over her brood. I will use one of my new 13mmx100mm test tubes.

 

Crematogaster spp. is doing amazing! Her brood pile is almost twice as big as her with plenty of brood of all stages! She should have workers around the same time as my Forelius.

 

Pheidole dentata are doing very well, my three-queen group has a large brood pile with larvae that look ready to become pupae. The two-queen group has a very sizable brood pile as well with smaller larvae.

 

Tetramorium immigrans has bad news and good news. The Fates have all passed away. They dug their way through some more wet plaster to the reservoir, and it tipped flooding the whole thing overnight. This leaves only one Tetramorium group, which is now a colony! She had workers eclose yesterday, and I also provided 17 pupae from a colony outside that I accidentally disturbed.

 

Monomorium minimum is doing incredible. My five-queen group (now four queen) has a massive brood pile! My single queen founding group has a sizable brood pile as well with pupae as well!

 

Solenopsis molesta group died literally by the next morning after I caught them. I have no idea what happened here, there didn’t seem to be any obvious issues.

 

Lasius neoniger groups passed away. I’ll try again around Labor Day.


Current Colonies

1 x Camponotus nearcticus (Monogynous), 1 x Crematogaster cerasi (Monogynous), 1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Polygynous Two-Queen), 1 x Formica cf. pallidefulva (Monogynous, single worker),

1 x Lasius cf. americanus (Pleometrotic Founding, now Monogynous), 1 x Tetramorium immigrans (Monogynous)

 

Current Founding Units

1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Monogynous)

 

Up-To-Date as of 9/15/2020

 


#12 Offline ANTdrew - Posted August 3 2019 - 5:08 PM

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Update?

"The ants are a people not strong, yet they prepare their meat in the summer." Prov. 30:25   I <3 tiny ants


#13 Offline DJoseph98 - Posted August 4 2019 - 6:27 PM

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Update?

Update comin up


Current Colonies

1 x Camponotus nearcticus (Monogynous), 1 x Crematogaster cerasi (Monogynous), 1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Polygynous Two-Queen), 1 x Formica cf. pallidefulva (Monogynous, single worker),

1 x Lasius cf. americanus (Pleometrotic Founding, now Monogynous), 1 x Tetramorium immigrans (Monogynous)

 

Current Founding Units

1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Monogynous)

 

Up-To-Date as of 9/15/2020

 


#14 Offline DJoseph98 - Posted August 4 2019 - 6:31 PM

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Update 8/4/19:

Camponotus chromaidoes #1 all died. Not quite sure what happened.

I think it may have been overheating; in any case, I gave the brood to my Camponotus chromaiodes “H”, now to be known as just Camponotus chromaiodes. She ate most of the brood I gave her and laid new eggs so maybe she’ll make a comeback and I’ll finally have a successful Camponotus colony.

 

Forelius cf pruinosis has its first nanitic as of 8/3/19! Should have more on the way soon.

 

Crematogaster spp. queen had been killing and eating eclosing nanitics for some reason but finally one has survived and is completely darkened. Will have additional workers in a few days and she has been laying eggs.

 

Pheidole dentata ->

  • My Three Queen founding group has three nanitics as of today! The first eclosed on 8/3/19. I gave them part of a cricket thorax which freaked out the queens at first until one realized it was food not fiend and started eating.
  • My Dual Queen founding group had a queen die, so now it’s my Single Queen founding group. There doesn’t seem to be any pupae but plenty of eggs and larvae.
  • I also found four more queens on 7/28/19 which I proceeded to place into a 13 mm test tube (I keep the others in 16mm) together and they are getting along great! They had a huge egg pile two days later. Every time I check on them though it looks like they are circling around a single queen. I once caught one laying an egg and the others were all touching that single one with their antenna kind of like midwives.
  • I hope to combine the Single Queen and Three Queen groups when the Three Queen colony has more nanitics, and if this proceeds well, I will also try to combine with the four queen colony (this is only if the single queen doesn’t turn up dead a week after). I want to make sure there are plenty of workers to care for everyone. As a note for anyone who wants to keep this species, the nanitics are REALLY small and don’t seem to have any trouble climbing upside down in the test tube at all.

 

My Tetramorium immigrans colony has at least 20 workers now, though it seems two nanitics have died. They weren’t torn apart so it was probably due to trauma from a flooding incident a little while ago (keeping everyone on a slant to avoid this from happening again) rather than aggression with broost boosted individuals. I gave them a lifetime supply of dog food crumbs and a tube with sugar water and they seem happy. Just gave them most of a cricket thorax which they seemed excited about as well.

 

Monomorium minimum ->

  • Monomorium minimum monogynous queen has a lot of pupae (at least 10).
  • The Monomorium four queen group has become a two queen group but it seems that the only ones that have passed away were not the ones contributing to the brood pile. The brood pile has a lot of eggs and larvae but not any pupae yet.
  • Will combine these two colonies when the monogynous founding group has close to 10 workers (should be in the next 10 days from the number of pupae there are).

I found another Solenopsis molesta queen! They were having a flight that was being attacked by a bunch of dragonflies and she was the only one who still had her gaster (lucky me, she was also fertile). I gave her a Camponotus egg that had exploded during the afore mentioned brood transfer. She grabbed it immediately and bolted for the wet cotton. It was gone the next day, her gaster was twice as large and she had a large brood pile going. I wholly recommend feeding Solenopsis molesta queens other ant brood before putting them away for founding. I am planning on raiding a nearby Lasius colony for their brood so I can freeze it and save for later feeding.

 

 

I also found what appears to be Temnothorax americanus the other day which is a slave raider. I found two workers of the same species and they got along fine with the queen however since I have no idea how to find a Temnothorax colony to provide as an initial host I don’t think this will o anywhere. Provided honey and food now to see if they take care of her. Honestly, don’t expect too many updates on this one because I’m pretty sure this isn’t going to go anywhere.

 

I also provided scrambled eggs from my breakfast to most of my colonies while they were founding since my last update, and everyone has eaten it and provided it to larvae (since it makes them look like they have a yellow glob inside them) and have been giving honey to the Monomorium, Forelius, and Crematogaster. I am also in the process of coming up with some procedure to safely and successfully combine my Pheidole colonies and combine my Monomorium colonies to avoid needless death and tension.

 

As of today, I have 10 founding colony groups and if combinations are successful, I will have 7 colonies (this includes the Temnothorax founding queen even though I’m pretty sure this won’t work). I’ll post pics upon request since imgur is kind of a hassle for me to use.


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Current Colonies

1 x Camponotus nearcticus (Monogynous), 1 x Crematogaster cerasi (Monogynous), 1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Polygynous Two-Queen), 1 x Formica cf. pallidefulva (Monogynous, single worker),

1 x Lasius cf. americanus (Pleometrotic Founding, now Monogynous), 1 x Tetramorium immigrans (Monogynous)

 

Current Founding Units

1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Monogynous)

 

Up-To-Date as of 9/15/2020

 


#15 Offline DJoseph98 - Posted September 4 2019 - 5:54 AM

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Update 9/4/2019
So it’s been a while since the last update since school has started back up again and the workload can get intense. So, for a short run of updates (and a few statements to clarify my last set of updates) here’s what I have.

Camponotus chromaiodes ->
She has at least 6 eggs/small larvae (which is good) and I’ve been feeding her honey and will add some protein shake as well to help since she has already lost a lot from investing protein into the first failed batch. I WILL have a Camponotus colony!! I provided her some honey today, which she happily consumed completely, as well as two fruit flies which she either didn’t see or ignored.

Crematogaster spp. ->
They are doing quite well, sizable batch of brood as well as about 4 workers (pretty sure some escaped). I gave them an outworld which I think has greatly improved their happiness because before it was hard to feed them since they kept trying to get out of the tube (like always a worker tugging at the cotton no matter what). They may have found a way to send out workers out of the outworld so I switched it back to a pure test tube setup. Gave the group some honey directly and a fruit fly (drank all of the honey ignored the fly).

Forelius cf pruinosis ->
Doing quite well, they have about 10 workers now and they love loading up on honey. They cleared all the mold on the water cotton so now I don’t have to worry about moving them anymore and they seem quite well and stable. Been feeding them house flies I keep finding from outside into my apartment (I freeze them before providing them). I gave them some honey today which they all filled up on and a fruit fly.

Monomorium minimum ->
Both colony groups attained 7 workers each and immediately combined to form a three queen colony successfully! I just connected the two tubes with a small vinyl tube path and when the workers began exploring they kind fo merged. I don’t know for sure how long this colony will live since queens only live about a year, but I hope that since at least one of the queens is from another area in the state there will be some breeding between colony alates next year that will give me an immortal colony (hopefully). This colony now has at least 30 workers in their tube. I gave them a drop of honey which they swarmed and I also provided a single crushed fruit fly.

Pheidole dentata ->
I don’t even know where to start with this. I have learned a lot from this experience. The three/four queen group that I created when there were workers pretty much imploded. After a few days all queens were ripped to shreds by the workers (I know this because I caught a worker attacking a decapitated head that was still moving). Since I have another four queen group in another test tube, I took all the brood I could and tossed it in with them (unknown if they ate it or accepted them, either way the remnants are salvaged). I have no idea why ALL the queens ended up dead. So, now that I let a few newly enclosed workers into the five queen group but I think they are all ignoring each other. I’m not absolutely certain what to do at this point. Maybe separate all the queens and divide the brood? Even if they eat all of their brood its better than all queens dead and no chance of a colony I guess. I will have to do this on the 3rd of this month.

Decided last second to move them into new tubes. Tube was filthy (a 13 mm with 5 queens and I guess some residual honey) and had NO brood! Separated into two 13 mm tubes. A three queen tube and a two queen tube (who have both workers for now, just in case they try something again). I might provide some protein whenever they have larvae again, hopefully sooner rather than later since I’m heating my colonies now.

Temnothorax cf americanus ->
All dead as of today.

Solenopsis molesta ->
Doing okay I suppose. I think she ate most of her brood (I checked on this one maybe one too many times). I will find some eggs from somewhere to feed here and boost her chances of success. I’m somewhat nervous about keeping this species since if they get out it could plague me for a long time. No workers yet and honestly I can’t see if the brood pile contains any other stages than eggs since it’s so small. I gave her some honey which she immediately filled up on.

Lasius neoniger ->
I caught one queen a few days ago and she seems to have lost a piece of antennae and have a compromised exoskeleton on her taster. Unfortunately, it’s the only one I could find since I missed the flight because of classes. Unknown if she will succeed or lay any eggs, but I will give her a chance. If she does lay eggs and has newly enclosed nanitics and I’m still not confident on her survival, I will most likely offer the founding colony to a parasitic Lasius queen like L. claviger or L. aphidocolus. Either way, I hope that I can find a few more. Right now she does sits there looking almost nauseous.

Tetramorium immigrans ->
I checked on the colony a little while ago and it seems the queen has passed away. There were no obvious signs of foul play, she was still intact. I guess she just up and quit. RIP

Myrmica spp. ->
Yesterday I caught/found what I believe is a Myrmica queen walking around. It’s faster is quite small to be Aphaenogaster and from what I’ve researched even the parasitic Aphaenogaster have sizable gasters (at least the one’s reported in my state and surrounding states). I’ve also read that Myrmica are semi claustral (which would explain the smaller gaster). I am unsure if I caught a queen after a flight or if she was out and about foraging since she was dealated without any wings nearby. I will post a id request so hopefully I will have a better idea of what kind of queen I’m dealing with. I did find a male earlier but I have no idea whether it belonged to Myrmica or not. I will provide her with an outworld as soon as I get her back home. Going to go get some flightless fruit flies to provide some of that easy protein.

Brought her back home, gave her an outworld. She immediately began drinking honey I gave her and attacked a fruit fly I handed and immediately started looking for place to run with it. Now she just hangs in the outworld. She was still hanging out in the outworld just sitting around today so I left her in the tube with food to lay her first batch of eggs and establish it as home base.

That’s pretty much it for the updates. I’m starting to heat all my colonies with a little hermit crab heat pad which is pretty weak so I don’t have to worry much on overheating them and I also have a bunch of little thermometers to ensure good heating gradients. Like the water reservoirs stay in a temp range of 73F to 77F and on the other end there is a range of 85F to 90F (which I know seems pretty high but as long as the water remains cool, the glass close to it in the test tubes will not get too high either allowing for an estimated 12.5F gradient which would about equate to an average change in temperature of 2.5F per cm. I heat them on the open side of test tube so as not to overheat water and cause or flood or extreme humidity. I’ve already observed my Camponotus and Monomorium taking advantage of the heat with their brood.
Also, due to the struggles that my Camponotus has experienced I think I will wait a bit longer to hibernate them since they could use the time to catchup. At least above 60F so they can still be active in regards to eating since all I hear is how so many colonies and swaths of workers are lost when they go through diapause in a fridge. I will however, hibernate my other colonies (except maybe my Pheidole if I can help them make a comeback). On the note of hibernation, I wonder if the colonies of Monomorium minimum that underwent research had been given a diapause event or not. If not, I will most likely provide my Monomorium with the rest that will most likely extend the queen lifespans; however, if they had been, I will forgo diapause in this species (if they don’t show signs of already entering it) so that they can maximize their efforts in their lifespans.
This leaves me with Six colonies in the founding stages (counting the two Pheidole tubes separately), and Three colonies in early stages of Colony Growth.

Current Colonies

1 x Camponotus nearcticus (Monogynous), 1 x Crematogaster cerasi (Monogynous), 1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Polygynous Two-Queen), 1 x Formica cf. pallidefulva (Monogynous, single worker),

1 x Lasius cf. americanus (Pleometrotic Founding, now Monogynous), 1 x Tetramorium immigrans (Monogynous)

 

Current Founding Units

1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Monogynous)

 

Up-To-Date as of 9/15/2020

 


#16 Offline DJoseph98 - Posted September 8 2019 - 11:24 AM

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Update 9/8/19

I bought a small vial culture of specifically wingless fruit flies from a pet store, which I have currently been using to feed all of my colonies and founding groups. I also have a group of mealworm beetles that I am hoping are laying eggs in their setup which of course has a layer of wheat bran on the bottom and egg crate. No mealworms yet of course, but hopefully I will have some by winter and plenty to use come spring when my colonies will be booming (fingers crossed).
 
Camponotus chromaiodes 
So, after a little more than a week of heating, she has laid a lot more eggs and there are definitely larvae in her batch. I have been feeding her plenty of honey (which she consumes happily) and I have also been providing her with pre-killed fruit flies. At first I gave her only two fruit flies which I had frozen for an hour to kill; however, she moved them to the dry cotton end of the tube like she does with garbage. When I gave her a fruit fly that I had only stunned for a minute with the freezer and subsequently crushed before it regained consciousness, it had disappeared in her tube after a day. You can also see some larvae with dark spots inside (digesting fruit fly maybe?).   
 
Forelius cf. pruinosis
Honestly, this group is doing very well from what I can tell. I saw at least a doubling in population after a few days of heating (they at about ten or fifteen workers now and growing). They have consumed everything provided so far (frozen fruit flies and freshly killed). They don’t seem to get enough honey to satisfy them for very long either. I believe this colony will thrive, especially considering how their brood piles keep growing despite the growing rate of worker eclosure. There only trouble with this group seems to be the fact that they seem to want another nest (maybe something cleaner since the cotton is somewhat dirty but not moldy anymore.
 
Monomorium minimum
There is some sadness here today. One of the three queens died, and the workers brought her over to the trash pile. I have seen some of the workers working at the water cotton plug so maybe they are dehydrated? I will push it in a little further so their little tunnels will provide some moisture. They have eaten every format of fruit fly I have provided and eat an unbelievable amount of honey. Honestly, these eat the most of any other group that I have so far. Two fruit flies completely disappeared within a day which is shocking considering their size. Right now their worker count is quickly approaching thirty or so. 
 
Crematogaster spp.
A day after I exposed this colony to the heating mat, they moved their entire brood pile to the far end of the tube where it was hottest. They had six workers enclose in the last couple of days and have eaten all the honey (which was at least the size of the queen because of a slip of my hand) and three fruit flies of all format. This group seems to be doing well, though I worry about stressing them too much since feeding is difficult with their brood so close to the open end. They don’t seem to care as much when it’s honey though. They drop whatever they are doing and rush over to it.
 
Pheidole dentata
Doublet Group
This group had two workers with them. One worker drowned in a drop of honey, and I think the other one was killed by the two queens. One has a swollen gaster unknown if from honey or not, the other not so much. No eggs or brood but seem to be calm towards each other.
Triplet Group
No visible changes with this group except two swollen gasters. 
I think I will try separating each queen into a separate 13mm test tube. It’s possible that since P. dentata is a species complex, I may have a group that isn’t truly polygynous (which would explain my difficulties from before. There is only so much you can do, I guess, when there is always an uncertainty. I just hope I can get them to thrive since I took them out of their natural environment.
 
Solenopsis molesta
Drank a shocking amount of honey. Her gaster is very swollen, and she even devoured an entire fruit fly. I noticed that she is still trying to eat a piece of ant larvae that was molded over next to the wet cotton. This may be why some of her larvae disappeared (literal food poisoning maybe). She has a small batch of eggs so I will try and remove the mold and give her plenty of peace until I think it’s time to check again (maybe two or three weeks).
 
Myrmica spp.
This queen drank a lot of honey provided. She didn’t eat any of her pre killed fruit flies, however I released a live fruit fly in her tube. No sign of it after a day and her gaster looked significantly larger. Live feeding may be the best option with this queen. She seems to have made a hideout for herself within the tube with cotton she pulled from the plugs. I will have to design a setup that will keep the fruit flies from escaping but will provide her an outworld so she understands the tube is an actual home.
 
Lasius neoniger
In the last update I expressed my concerns over this queen’s fitness due to injuries sustained before I found her. It seems these concerns were appropriate. I found this queen dead in her tube with white mold growing out of her. Nothing to do about it, you win some you lose some.
 
This total leaves me at eight separate colonies/founding groups, which will change to twelve if/when I separate the Pheidole dentata queens. If there are any questions or pieces of advise, feel free to give your input. I don’t have much time for brainstorming solutions, so any extra brainpower from the community is always greatly appreciated.
 

Current Colonies

1 x Camponotus nearcticus (Monogynous), 1 x Crematogaster cerasi (Monogynous), 1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Polygynous Two-Queen), 1 x Formica cf. pallidefulva (Monogynous, single worker),

1 x Lasius cf. americanus (Pleometrotic Founding, now Monogynous), 1 x Tetramorium immigrans (Monogynous)

 

Current Founding Units

1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Monogynous)

 

Up-To-Date as of 9/15/2020

 


#17 Offline DJoseph98 - Posted September 15 2019 - 4:49 PM

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Update 9/15/19

So there has been some misfortune. I decided to wait to check out my Camponotus queen so as not to disturb her so when I finally did check, she was dead and all her larvae and eggs were molded. It was three days. I don’t quite understand what happened since they were being exposed to excessive heat, so maybe it was death by fungus. Keeping the corpse for observation. RIP

Forelius cf pruinosis
I’ve been forcing a colony move for about two days which has finally been successful. Their tube had been very moldy before, so this was to ensure they had access to clean water. I also placed dirt inside the new tube for them to burrow in. Since hibernation will be within the next two months most likely, I figured dirt will help reduce mortality from cold exposure on the glass as well as improve colony development.
BkPmIsE.jpg

Crematogaster spp.
This colony is doing quite well, they now have about ten workers and there are six pupae as well. I also forced a colony move on them because their water started to look dirty. I provided dirt in the new tube as well for the same reasons as I did the Forelius. They seem to be doing very well for themselves and don’t get stressed very easily anymore. I think they may now associate a disturbance with the appearance of honey now (which they all rush to enjoy). They definitely have pupae the size of regular workers so soon the nanitics will be fazed out.
FaceQHy.jpg

Monomorium minimum
Seem to be doing well, they never seem to remain satisfied on food for long. They have a good deal of workers that mobilize immediately whenever I unplug their tube. Somehow the true number of workers remain hidden until mobilization, so I never have a good worker-count. They love fruit flies and all of their larvae (which is a huge pile of them) always look like they’ve eaten plenty. I will most likely move them into my little plaster formicarium (with substrate) when I think they’ve reached an appropriate worker count (about 100) or when they seem to be approaching diapause (whichever comes first).

Pheidole dentata
So this category has about five queens, each in separate test tubes. Four queens I have exposed to light occasionally through a red vinyl layer, two of these have substrate. The fifth has substrate but is blacked out with black paper. I did this so that I could have varied success and see who did best. So far, only one queen has laid eggs in the new tube. I remembered that I had actually given all of them two fruit flies before separating them into single queen tubes, I remembered because I found the remains when cleaning the old test tubes. I mention this because two queens, one in particular, have much larger gasters than the others. I think this is because they ate the fruit flies but it could also be swollen ovarioles (one of these queens was the first to lay eggs in the new tube).

Solenopsis molesta
I have pretty much left this queen alone with a bit less heat. Nothing to update or report.

Myrmica spp.
I posted an ID request today already, so hopefully I can get something out of it. She seems very active, I provided her some first substrate both in the tube and in the outworld. She seemed to go into a blood lust after killing her first fruit fly and killed six more in a frenzy. I recently gave her eleven more (actually dropped too many) and I’m certain she’ll kill and eat them all.
fY4d5bX.jpg

Formica subsericea
That’s right… I FINALLY HAVE A FORMICA QUEEN AGAIN!! I literally found her right after I got out of my first block exam last Friday. She was being dragged away by a Formica subsericea worker by the mandibles (but there weren’t any other workers around them so it definitely wasn’t their established queen). My theory is that since this species is polygynous, they were incorporating newly mated dealates into their colony. I didn’t find any more queens after that though. I did not take the worker since I think adjusting to tube life would be much more difficult if the queen had a mature worker who had memory of living in the outside. I provided her a test tube with a layer of substrate and pushed in the cotton enough to wet the substrate by five millimeters (I think, I’m measuring from memory). She immediately began cotton tugging and began tugging A LOT of cotton. After twenty four hours, she was digging substrate. Hoping I can do better with this queen than I did with my last Formica.
fPkqaC4.jpg
yAK6MwZ.jpg
jy8xAen.jpg

I haven’t mentioned it before because I wasn’t sure how it would turn out, but I placed maybe six springtails from outside in a moldy test tube from one of my previous founding queens (RIP) and they’ve now proliferated within the tube. There is some dirt so I can’t get an exact head count but there are much more now. I wet pieces of insects, fish flakes, etc in to keep some mold going but it disappears after a day. I’m hoping that if substrate molding ever becomes an issue, I can release some springtails into the tubes to help deal with them.
The substrate/“dirt” I’ve been using is from ZooMed Creature Soil, which is supposed to be a blend of peat moss, soil, sand, and carbon. The ants didn’t seem to mind it too much, and since the bagged is sealed it should be clean of any kind of parasites. Should. Soon as the first sign of a problem from the soil, evacuation procedures for my ants will be initiated which pretty much means dump out the dirt in a bucket lined with baby powder with an empty test tube and a thin layer of water under the spilled dirt. Since I have half of my Pheidole dentata in the substrate for a couple days longer than any other groups, I should be able to save my other colonies in time. Since it was specifically made for invertebrates, I wouldn’t think there would be any issues.
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Current Colonies

1 x Camponotus nearcticus (Monogynous), 1 x Crematogaster cerasi (Monogynous), 1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Polygynous Two-Queen), 1 x Formica cf. pallidefulva (Monogynous, single worker),

1 x Lasius cf. americanus (Pleometrotic Founding, now Monogynous), 1 x Tetramorium immigrans (Monogynous)

 

Current Founding Units

1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Monogynous)

 

Up-To-Date as of 9/15/2020

 


#18 Offline ANTdrew - Posted September 16 2019 - 2:58 PM

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Good progress. My Crematogaster are my most chill colony as well. Nothing really upsets them except for the one time I accidentally smushed a worker replacing their lid and all HECK broke loose.
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#19 Offline DJoseph98 - Posted September 26 2019 - 7:02 AM

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Update 9/21/19
Sorry this post is late just forgot to post it. Will post a more relevant post by tonight or tomorrow.
So my dead Camponotus chromaiodes queen that I kept for observation has not shown anything that would indicate a cause of death (ie no fungus or rapid bacterial breakdown of the body). Body is safely disposed of.
On a brighter note, I found two more Formica subsericea queens the same way and place as the first. They ate quite a bit of honey.

Crematogaster spp.
So had a bit of a scare with this colony. Somehow the cotton plug got loosened on their tube so about fourteen workers were wandering around the shelf I was keeping them on. Gathering them back up was pretty easy and I dropped them in a cup with a bit of honey in the bottom. They were so interested in the honey they didn’t even bother trying to climb out. It made placing them back in the tube pretty easy. Overall I think they have around seventeen workers now.

Monomorium minimum
I haven’t even bothered trying to count how many workers this colony has, they are so small and run around so frantically. They actually impressed me quite a bit yesterday. I had chilled maybe seven fruit flies to feed them and I thought they had completely died. So I dropped them into the Monomorium tube and everything was good for a second until they all just sprang up and started running around. It didn’t take more than a minute before the workers had subdued each one using just their stingers. Their venom must be significantly potent because it only took one or two stings to kill the much larger fruit fly. It was never my intention to do a live feeding but it certainly produced interesting results. I always figured Monomorium were more of a scavenger species. When their colony continues to grow, I will have to be extra careful, due to the possible presence of alkaloids in their venom.

Forelius cf. pruinosis
I love this colony. I can literally leave the tubing from their test tube open wen I’m feeding them because they never walk past honey. They never waste time collecting food either, it’s nice to see such a good natured colony. They seem to be somewhat easily disturbed if only by just light or air. Overall, I think they have close to around twenty workers but it’s hard to get a count since they are so pale and move so fast.

Pheidole dentata
Two of the three queens I added to a dirt tube have made burrows and seem to be doing well. The third, however, is cotton pulling and doesn’t seem to like the situation. Out of the two without any dirt, one queen has actually laid a few eggs (which is one of the physogastric ones). I feel confident this one will develop well. I have not bothered them or checked for about five days and will continue to ignore them so as to provide optimum chances of success.

Solenopsis molesta
So, I checked on this queen and all of her brood were gone and there was green mold near the cotton. I’m guessing her brood were either devoured by her or the mold. Another possibility is that this queen had not successfully mated and her brood were doomed from the start. Either way, I moved her into a new tube with damp substrate (damp so that tunnel collapse would be less likely). I guess I have to wait another month if there will be any success at all.

Formica subsericea
So I found that there was too much loose substrate with my original queen. Every time the tube shifted so did most of the substrate and she lost footing. No eggs yet, so I removed her and dumped some substrate out until it wouldn’t come out easily (which still left plenty). Initially, I also had added the two new queens with her but I think a single tube is too much for three queens of this size. I moved the two new queens to a new test tube with some damp substrate against the cotton. I will check on all these groups in two or three days. I keep seeing conflicting sources on whether this species is polygynous or monogynous and none of the sources cite any research articles, studies, or peer reviewed journals so, as far as I’m concerned, the matter has not been truly explored thoroughly enough. This is why I have a dual queen colony and a single. Hopefully, the results will help whoever comes across this journal in search of similar info. The circumstances I found these queens would indicate a polygynous behavior at least with daughter queens, and when they were together there was no sort of aggression of worry. Just touching and antennae stroking. I have found out to my dismay that this is not an indicator of polygynous behavior since the incident I have with my original Pheidole dentata founding groups.
If the dual queen group fails to lay eggs before three days have past that the single queen has laid eggs, I will separate them and see if this alters anything.

Myrmica spp.
I have never seen anything as savage as this queen. I tend to leave her outworld alone for at least a week at a time only changing the honey and dumping maybe twelve live fruit flies to last her. A fruit fly will wander into her covered tube, and sprint straight back out and she’ll immediately take that one down, and pursue all the other until she is convinced there are none left alive. This queen’s gaster has grown considerably larger and every fruit fly I remove seems to have been sucked dry of their fluids. I feel like my keeping this queen will be very successful. She dumped out most of the substrate I put in her tube though, so I am unsure if there is something about that bother her or if she just prefers to have a large chamber and then a secluded chamber (which is what her tube now looks like the way she manipulated the cotton and substrate). This has to be one of the most entertaining founding queens I have ever kept and I’ve been greatly impressed by her hunting abilities. If this queen is successful, I will have to give her colony a true terrarium. I feel that watching the colony hunt in the outworld will be much more interesting than watching their underground activities; besides, that’s what my other colonies are for.

Current Colonies

1 x Camponotus nearcticus (Monogynous), 1 x Crematogaster cerasi (Monogynous), 1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Polygynous Two-Queen), 1 x Formica cf. pallidefulva (Monogynous, single worker),

1 x Lasius cf. americanus (Pleometrotic Founding, now Monogynous), 1 x Tetramorium immigrans (Monogynous)

 

Current Founding Units

1 x Formica cf. subsericea (Monogynous)

 

Up-To-Date as of 9/15/2020

 


#20 Offline NickAnter - Posted September 26 2019 - 2:00 PM

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Update 9/21/19
Sorry this post is late just forgot to post it. Will post a more relevant post by tonight or tomorrow.
So my dead Camponotus chromaiodes queen that I kept for observation has not shown anything that would indicate a cause of death (ie no fungus or rapid bacterial breakdown of the body). Body is safely disposed of.
On a brighter note, I found two more Formica subsericea queens the same way and place as the first. They ate quite a bit of honey.
Crematogaster spp.
So had a bit of a scare with this colony. Somehow the cotton plug got loosened on their tube so about fourteen workers were wandering around the shelf I was keeping them on. Gathering them back up was pretty easy and I dropped them in a cup with a bit of honey in the bottom. They were so interested in the honey they didn’t even bother trying to climb out. It made placing them back in the tube pretty easy. Overall I think they have around seventeen workers now.
Monomorium minimum
I haven’t even bothered trying to count how many workers this colony has, they are so small and run around so frantically. They actually impressed me quite a bit yesterday. I had chilled maybe seven fruit flies to feed them and I thought they had completely died. So I dropped them into the Monomorium tube and everything was good for a second until they all just sprang up and started running around. It didn’t take more than a minute before the workers had subdued each one using just their stingers. Their venom must be significantly potent because it only took one or two stings to kill the much larger fruit fly. It was never my intention to do a live feeding but it certainly produced interesting results. I always figured Monomorium were more of a scavenger species. When their colony continues to grow, I will have to be extra careful, due to the possible presence of alkaloids in their venom.
Forelius cf. pruinosis
I love this colony. I can literally leave the tubing from their test tube open wen I’m feeding them because they never walk past honey. They never waste time collecting food either, it’s nice to see such a good natured colony. They seem to be somewhat easily disturbed if only by just light or air. Overall, I think they have close to around twenty workers but it’s hard to get a count since they are so pale and move so fast.
Pheidole dentata
Two of the three queens I added to a dirt tube have made burrows and seem to be doing well. The third, however, is cotton pulling and doesn’t seem to like the situation. Out of the two without any dirt, one queen has actually laid a few eggs (which is one of the physogastric ones). I feel confident this one will develop well. I have not bothered them or checked for about five days and will continue to ignore them so as to provide optimum chances of success.
Solenopsis molesta
So, I checked on this queen and all of her brood were gone and there was green mold near the cotton. I’m guessing her brood were either devoured by her or the mold. Another possibility is that this queen had not successfully mated and her brood were doomed from the start. Either way, I moved her into a new tube with damp substrate (damp so that tunnel collapse would be less likely). I guess I have to wait another month if there will be any success at all.
Formica subsericea
So I found that there was too much loose substrate with my original queen. Every time the tube shifted so did most of the substrate and she lost footing. No eggs yet, so I removed her and dumped some substrate out until it wouldn’t come out easily (which still left plenty). Initially, I also had added the two new queens with her but I think a single tube is too much for three queens of this size. I moved the two new queens to a new test tube with some damp substrate against the cotton. I will check on all these groups in two or three days. I keep seeing conflicting sources on whether this species is polygynous or monogynous and none of the sources cite any research articles, studies, or peer reviewed journals so, as far as I’m concerned, the matter has not been truly explored thoroughly enough. This is why I have a dual queen colony and a single. Hopefully, the results will help whoever comes across this journal in search of similar info. The circumstances I found these queens would indicate a polygynous behavior at least with daughter queens, and when they were together there was no sort of aggression of worry. Just touching and antennae stroking. I have found out to my dismay that this is not an indicator of polygynous behavior since the incident I have with my original Pheidole dentata founding groups.
If the dual queen group fails to lay eggs before three days have past that the single queen has laid eggs, I will separate them and see if this alters anything.
Myrmica spp.
I have never seen anything as savage as this queen. I tend to leave her outworld alone for at least a week at a time only changing the honey and dumping maybe twelve live fruit flies to last her. A fruit fly will wander into her covered tube, and sprint straight back out and she’ll immediately take that one down, and pursue all the other until she is convinced there are none left alive. This queen’s gaster has grown considerably larger and every fruit fly I remove seems to have been sucked dry of their fluids. I feel like my keeping this queen will be very successful. She dumped out most of the substrate I put in her tube though, so I am unsure if there is something about that bother her or if she just prefers to have a large chamber and then a secluded chamber (which is what her tube now looks like the way she manipulated the cotton and substrate). This has to be one of the most entertaining founding queens I have ever kept and I’ve been greatly impressed by her hunting abilities. If this queen is successful, I will have to give her colony a true terrarium. I feel that watching the colony hunt in the outworld will be much more interesting than watching their underground activities; besides, that’s what my other colonies are for.

I thought this too, about the monomorium, except for Solenopsis molesta, until I got stung on the wrist when I accidentall set my arm down on a swarming nest...

Colonies:

Nylanderia vividula   (250 workers, and male/female alates)             Founding Queens                          

Lasius niger   (15 workers)                                                      Temnothorax nevadensisx12(1 queen with an egg)

Lasius cf. americanus   (55+ workers)                                     Tetramorium bicarinatum   (Larvae)

Pheidole navigans   (25+workers)                                            Lasius brevicornis(No brood)

Solenopsis molesta group  (4 workers)                                    Lasius cf. crypticus(no brood)

Solenopsis xyloni   (5 workers)                                





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