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Has anyone kept Velvet ants before?

wasp velvet ants wasp keeping velvet ant keeping

23 replies to this topic

#1 Online Chickalo - Posted January 13 2021 - 5:21 AM

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I've seen them once in my town (recorded it on iNaturalist :D), has anyone kept them though?  They look really cool, but I don't think they can breed in captivity.


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#2 Online ANTdrew - Posted January 13 2021 - 5:30 AM

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I don't recommend "keeping"  any of these solitary wasps. A better course is to plant native plants in your yard that will feed wasps and their host insects. If you don't have a yard, there are probably many ways you can help volunteer to plant native plants in your area, or to remove invasive plants.


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#3 Offline AntsDakota - Posted January 13 2021 - 6:39 AM

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Yes, I agree. Besides, it wouldn’t be very fulfilling to simply keep one wasp that doesn’t raise a colony of any kind.
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#4 Online Kaelwizard - Posted January 13 2021 - 6:54 AM

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Besides, just think if you got stung.  :/



#5 Offline Spazmops - Posted January 13 2021 - 6:57 AM

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I assume you know this, but just in case you don't: Velvet ants aren't ants. They're a kind of solitary wasp with a very painful sting, but they look extremely similar to dealate queen ants. Before I realized this I caught a huge one I found because I thought it was a queen.

 

Edit: I just realized this post was tagged with 'wasps', so feel free to ignore what I said. 


Edited by Spazmops, January 13 2021 - 6:58 AM.

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Ants I have:

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1 Dorymyrmex insanus- 1 queen, used to have workers

1 Pogonomyrmex occidentalis- 4 workers, a decent amount of brood

1 large P. occidentalis colony- around 50 workers, plenty of brood

1 Lasius sp.- 2 workers, Brood

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#6 Offline Ant_Dude2908 - Posted January 13 2021 - 7:32 AM

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Besides, just think if you got stung.  :/

Its not fun. I've only been stung a couple times by Velvet Ants, but it is NOT fun...


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#7 Online Kaelwizard - Posted January 13 2021 - 7:37 AM

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Besides, just think if you got stung.  :/

Its not fun. I've only been stung a couple times by Velvet Ants, but it is NOT fun...

 

How long does the pain last?



#8 Offline Ant_Dude2908 - Posted January 13 2021 - 7:47 AM

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Besides, just think if you got stung.  :/

Its not fun. I've only been stung a couple times by Velvet Ants, but it is NOT fun...

 

How long does the pain last?

 

Depends on the species. Most of the times I've been stung it was from some of the smaller species (10-13mm), so it only lasted 4-5 hours.



#9 Offline KitsAntVa - Posted January 13 2021 - 8:42 AM

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A smaller species in general still hurts, I've been stung by both, but I have seen some people take and hold them. There isn’t much to it though. They just hide and drink honey and that’s all they do their entire captive life.
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#10 Offline Dmaculata - Posted January 13 2021 - 9:30 AM

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I've kept Mutilids (velvet ants) before, they're pretty easy. I kept one in a large kritter keeper pretty much all the time that I've had it. you can keep them in small fish tanks also, which i would definitely prefer, tanks look a lot nicer. I made sure to give it access to water and honey/honey water pretty much all the time. Do make sure you keep the enclosure as dry as you can. I like to put some hides for them like cork bark, and just some small things like drift wood for them to climb on, they're pretty active. some people prefer a light that produces very small amount of heat to keep them very active, although it doesn't seem to be very needed, at lest from my experience. I used a mix of dry sand and coco fiber as a substrate, although it doesn't seem to matter much, I prefer the sand to replicate their natural environment.

 

 

Edit: Ah yes, also forgot to mention they are communal, and can be housed with different Mutilid sp. As long as they are in similar size range. They can also be housed with some desert beetle sp. if you're going for a communal setup, just go for a bit of a larger enclosure, although it doesn't have to be much bigger. Aquarimax pets on YouTube has some good videos on keeping them.


Edited by Dmaculata, January 13 2021 - 9:52 AM.

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#11 Offline Swirlysnowflake - Posted January 13 2021 - 9:54 AM

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Where can I buy a velvet ant? lol


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#12 Offline StrickyAnts - Posted January 13 2021 - 9:57 AM

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Where can I buy a velvet ant? lol

uh..................., I've never seen anyone sell them before lol



#13 Offline Swirlysnowflake - Posted January 13 2021 - 9:59 AM

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Where can I buy a velvet ant? lol

uh..................., I've never seen anyone sell them before lol

 

Oh, sad. I do know that bugsincyberspace sells them but I haven't seen them in stock for a while 


 My YouTube channel :)

 

 


#14 Offline antsandmore - Posted January 13 2021 - 10:21 AM

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Where can I buy a velvet ant? lol

uh..................., I've never seen anyone sell them before lol

 

Oh, sad. I do know that bugsincyberspace sells them but I haven't seen them in stock for a while 

 

I feel like i've seen somebody selling them on this forum before...


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#15 Offline Swirlysnowflake - Posted January 13 2021 - 11:53 AM

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Where can I buy a velvet ant? lol

uh..................., I've never seen anyone sell them before lol

 

Oh, sad. I do know that bugsincyberspace sells them but I haven't seen them in stock for a while 

 

I feel like i've seen somebody selling them on this forum before...

 

zantezaint had them, I remember now :)


 My YouTube channel :)

 

 


#16 Offline ponerinecat - Posted January 13 2021 - 2:41 PM

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They're fun, and you probably could breed them if you had the appropriate host wasp/bee. Just would be rather difficult to manage.



#17 Offline antsandmore - Posted January 13 2021 - 2:48 PM

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yep. wouldn't they be illegal to ship across state lines tho? or no...


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#18 Online Chickalo - Posted January 14 2021 - 5:00 AM

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I assume you know this, but just in case you don't: Velvet ants aren't ants. They're a kind of solitary wasp with a very painful sting, but they look extremely similar to dealate queen ants. Before I realized this I caught a huge one I found because I thought it was a queen.

 

Edit: I just realized this post was tagged with 'wasps', so feel free to ignore what I said. 

 

Where can I buy a velvet ant? lol

its hard to sell because since it's hard to breed them, the seller would half to catch them


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#19 Offline Swirlysnowflake - Posted January 14 2021 - 8:26 AM

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yep. wouldn't they be illegal to ship across state lines tho? or no...

No, you can ship them across state lines. They aren't ants, they're wasps, so it's fine.


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#20 Online Chickalo - Posted January 14 2021 - 8:32 AM

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yep. wouldn't they be illegal to ship across state lines tho? or no...

No, you can ship them across state lines. They aren't ants, they're wasps, so it's fine.

 

ants got it harder :c


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