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When should I be taking my ants out of hibernation?

hibernation

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8 replies to this topic

#1 Offline Ravage - Posted March 12 2021 - 10:40 AM

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Hello! This is my first post on Formiculture. I've been wanting to join this website for quite some time now but I'm a lazy procrastinator so I kept putting it off. I'll probably make an introduction post later, but for now I have a question I'd like help with.

 

My ant colonies (four of them, a tiny Tetramorium immigrans colony with larvae, two Formica subsericea colonies with 4-6 workers each, and a founding Lasius neoniger queen) have been hibernating at ~10 degrees Celsius in a small refrigerator dedicated to them since around a week into November. Ignoring the fact that I'm fretting over whether or not I measured the temperature right, I'm unsure when I should be taking them out. Now, I would be confident in hibernating them from the start of November to the start of March, if I lived further south than I do; seriously, y'all must be living in tropical paradises if the winter ants are flying in February. I live in Canada, and last year, there weren't even any signs of wild ants around until mid-April, so I thought maybe my ants would need to hibernate longer than most. I was thinking of bringing them out on the first day of Spring, but I'm worried that going for so long without food will be bad for their health.

 

So basically, my question is: should I wait until March 20th as I planned, or would that be too long and I should bring them out now? Or should they be hibernating for even longer than that, by chance? This is the first time I've hibernated ants, really; I'm really worried I'm not doing it right.


My name's Ryan! You can refer to me by my real name or my username; either's fine.

 

Current Colonies

Camponotus nearcticus (3 workers, 3 larvae [11-09-21])

Formica subsericea x2 (19 workers [11-02-21] & 16 workers [11-07-21)

Lasius neoniger (28 workers [11-04-21])

Prenolepis imparis x2 (37 workers & 18 workers [Both 21-31-21])

Tetramorium immigrans (~80 workers [11-09-21])


#2 Offline B_rad0806 - Posted March 12 2021 - 11:00 AM

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Now would be a good time. I just took my Camponotus modoc and laevigatus out of hibernation on the 5th so your ants should be ready :)


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#3 Offline Manitobant - Posted March 12 2021 - 11:43 AM

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In canada, most ants need 3 months of hibernation max. They can go longer, but it is completely unnecessary. I would take your ants out now.
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#4 Offline Ravage - Posted March 12 2021 - 4:47 PM

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Alrighty then, I'll see about bringing them out of the fridge. Is there any way in particular I should go about doing that? I've seen people recommend raising the temperature in small increments so the ants acclimate to the room temperature better, but the fridge is already at its "hottest" setting at 10 degrees so I don't really have a controlled way to do that.


My name's Ryan! You can refer to me by my real name or my username; either's fine.

 

Current Colonies

Camponotus nearcticus (3 workers, 3 larvae [11-09-21])

Formica subsericea x2 (19 workers [11-02-21] & 16 workers [11-07-21)

Lasius neoniger (28 workers [11-04-21])

Prenolepis imparis x2 (37 workers & 18 workers [Both 21-31-21])

Tetramorium immigrans (~80 workers [11-09-21])


#5 Offline ANTdrew - Posted March 12 2021 - 5:17 PM

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In canada, most ants need 3 months of hibernation max. They can go longer, but it is completely unnecessary. I would take your ants out now.

I second this. You can just bring them out to room temp for a day or two, then slowly introduce a heat source.
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"The ants are a people not strong, yet they prepare their meat in the summer." Prov. 30:25
Keep ordinary ants in extraordinary ways.

#6 Offline gs5248 - Posted March 12 2021 - 7:01 PM

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I will say that you should definitely take the tetramorium out.


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#7 Offline MinigunL5 - Posted March 13 2021 - 1:41 PM

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Tetermorium don't really need hibernation so take those out whenever. Formic and Lasius need 3-4 months of hibernation. So yeah take them all out. Assuming they are in test tubs though, I suggest you raise their temperature slowly and keep the tubes with the entrances angles upwards when you take them out. This will help to prevent flooding.


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ANTS I KEEP:

Formica subsericea queen with 2 workersLasius aphidicola queens-Camponotus pennsylvanicus queen| Camponotus novaeboracensis queen with ~35 workers10 Solenopsis molesta queens (together) with 5-10 workers| Lasius cf. neoniger queens| Apheonogaster fulva queenBrachymyrmex depilis queen| Myrmica cf. punctiventris queenStenamma brevicorne queen


#8 Offline Temperateants - Posted March 14 2021 - 6:54 AM

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Generally I give them heat after they lay their first batch of eggs for the year.


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#9 Offline Ravage - Posted March 15 2021 - 8:57 PM

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I took all my ants out of the fridge on Saturday and introduced them to room temperature; everything's going well it looks like, no casualties so far. There was a bunch of condensation that gathered on the ceiling of the Tetra's tube that I was afraid might drown them, but it all disappeared within a day.

 

I gave them all some boiled egg yolk in a drop of sugar water. The F. subsericea loved it and were munching on the yolk before I left them alone, but it appeared to dry up and go hard enough so that the tiny Tetra nanitics couldn't really bite at it with much success, so I took it out and gave them some of the outer portion of the egg instead; they seemed to react better to this and actually dragged some pieces over to the larvae. Not sure I should be feeding the L. neoniger queen straight out of hibernation, but I thought she might need some food after six months without it; it appears she slurped up the sugar water once I left her alone, but she didn't touch the yolk so I took it out.


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My name's Ryan! You can refer to me by my real name or my username; either's fine.

 

Current Colonies

Camponotus nearcticus (3 workers, 3 larvae [11-09-21])

Formica subsericea x2 (19 workers [11-02-21] & 16 workers [11-07-21)

Lasius neoniger (28 workers [11-04-21])

Prenolepis imparis x2 (37 workers & 18 workers [Both 21-31-21])

Tetramorium immigrans (~80 workers [11-09-21])






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