IDK if that would be so excellent. Higher chances of government intervention.
Government intervention is unlikely to happen due to the size of a hobby but due to the carelessness of hobbyists, like when the USDA banned foreign millipedes in the early 2000s because their traders didn't bother to properly healthcheck them and it turned out some of them had mites that could spell disaster to agriculture (many species are still available as captive breeds, something that doesn't work well for most ants).
That's why individual responsibility within a petkeeping community is so important.
I would like to see a good old fashioned book. All the internet resources are maddeningly shallow in my opinion.
All my other hobbies like birding, native plants, and fermentation have whole libraries dedicated to them. Ant keeping? Nothing.
Which is why journals and projects like wikis and caresheet databases are important.
If antkeepers don't step up and fill the void, nobody will.
At the same time, I tend to agree with NickAnter. How much do we need to grow this hobby? It could lead to more problems.
Antkeeping will always stay a niche hobby within a niche hobby - even isopodkeeping absolutely dwarfs antkeeping by a country mile.
You may get the impression that antkeeping is a big thing when watching AntsCanada or surfing ant forums, but the truth is it isn't.
On a more relevant theme, it might be nice to have an impartial equipment review site (though I agree that THA is sort of the gold standard - and so many formicaria creators pop up and go bust that it might be almost moot).
It's not just Formicaria makers, recently there's a lot of people who think selling exotic ants is a quick and easy way to make money, only to find out that the market is becoming increasingly oversaturated (particularly the european one). Naturally they'll aim to lower their expenses which often means cutting corners and omitting regulatory processes (like exportation permit fees) - in the end they are paving the way for government intervention, increased regulation and bans. Happened to other petkeeping hobbies before, yet antkeepers still think they're different.
The beginners' guides here and the one I saw on reddit seem to be very helpful, and I even plunked down some $$ and got AC's e-book.
Now, what might really be good is some kind of detailed guide on beginners' species to keep per state. THAT would have helped me a lot. I appreciate all the sellers who list "beginner/intermediate" "hibernation/no hibernation" and other information. Things I care about:
- brumination/hibernation/diapause requirements
- heating requirements
- anything unusual or esp. interesting
There's the reddit caresheet library and the ant-keepingwiki (which is currently down and will move to a better place soon), both have most of that data.
Problem is people need to actively participate in those project and well, most of them don't.
Everyone loves to have stuff readily available for easy consumption but when it comes to actually creating this stuff in the first place volunteers are sparse and far between.
Edited by Serafine, May 20 2020 - 2:33 AM.