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Lillyrose My first Year Anting: a general all over journal about my experience


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#1 Offline Lillyrose - Posted April 2 2021 - 7:42 PM

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So I've had a lot of experiences that don't really qualify for their own journals .. but I would like to document and keep track of.


I have spent a lot of time in the woods over the last few weeks. It has been amazing and my search for small things has really awakened my ability to see the things around me.

I had a quick surprise reminder that snakes are waking up when one squirmed right past my hand.

I found my dream type, dark red carpenter ants. I found 2 nests in the woods and 1 in my back yard. I can't wait to catch a queen for them.


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I managed to react quickly enough to catch a wasp. I'm terrified of wasps, until recently I kinda had a hate relationship with them. I went from excited to .. not .. really fast


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I have my acorn ants but I haven't spotted a queen. No one else had either until suddenly I spotted new eggs. People have said they maybe see a queen, but she's covered with workers.

I had some eggs and larvae when I took the colony but I thought I missed the queen. I was ready to call it quits on them until I noticed new eggs.

What do you think? Acorn ants were my first ever hunted colonies and I'd be super happy to have them.


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#2 Offline ANTdrew - Posted April 3 2021 - 2:50 AM

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Good luck! The ant season is literally just starting.
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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.


#3 Offline Lillyrose - Posted April 7 2021 - 4:39 AM

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I have spent the last nice days walking the woods, hanging out in the yard. Flipping over things and checking under things.

I've seen some ants but just workers.

Not sure what flies next or when .. maybe I should take out my blacklight?

It is still early but I feel like it's late lol

Edited by Lillyrose, April 7 2021 - 4:39 AM.


#4 Offline Kaelwizard - Posted April 7 2021 - 7:32 AM

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I have spent the last nice days walking the woods, hanging out in the yard. Flipping over things and checking under things.

I've seen some ants but just workers.

Not sure what flies next or when .. maybe I should take out my blacklight?

It is still early but I feel like it's late lol

Not sure about Virginia, but here in MI the P. imparis are flying.



#5 Offline Antcatcherpro3 - Posted April 7 2021 - 7:35 AM

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Same here. In MA, there are big flights of Prenolepis. I caught like 6 queens.



#6 Offline Kaelwizard - Posted April 7 2021 - 7:53 AM

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Same here. In MA, there are big flights of Prenolepis. I caught like 6 queens.

Caught 8 yesterday. 😝

#7 Offline Antcatcherpro3 - Posted April 7 2021 - 7:55 AM

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Cool! Hope you get a colony out of em! :)

 

 

Same here. In MA, there are big flights of Prenolepis. I caught like 6 queens.

Caught 8 yesterday.

 



#8 Offline Kaelwizard - Posted April 7 2021 - 7:58 AM

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Cool! Hope you get a colony out of em! :)


Same here. In MA, there are big flights of Prenolepis. I caught like 6 queens.

Caught 8 yesterday.
Thanks good luck with yours.

Please don’t be jealous Lilyrose! You’ll find them eventually!

Edited by Kaelwizard, April 7 2021 - 7:59 AM.

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#9 Offline Antcatcherpro3 - Posted April 7 2021 - 7:59 AM

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Maybe you can catch some queens if there are the right conditions lilyrose-good luck everyone with preno queens!!


:D


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#10 Offline ANTdrew - Posted April 7 2021 - 9:06 AM

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Still too early for blacklighting. Wait until the nighttime temperatures are 75+ well past sunset.


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

Keep ordinary ants in extraordinary ways.


#11 Offline NicholasP - Posted April 7 2021 - 9:56 AM

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Acorn ants are so fun to keep!



#12 Offline Lillyrose - Posted April 10 2021 - 5:28 AM

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I'm officially naming my acorn ants The Underdogs... I have no idea if they have a queen and will survive .. or if it's just making their last days comfortable but my goodness I love these things.

#13 Offline ANTdrew - Posted April 10 2021 - 5:30 AM

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Be on the lookout for Camponotus queens around dusk on Sunday! You can find dealates scuttling about long into the evening.

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

Keep ordinary ants in extraordinary ways.


#14 Offline Lillyrose - Posted April 10 2021 - 5:37 AM

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Be on the lookout for Camponotus queens around dusk on Sunday! You can find dealates scuttling about long into the evening.



Ok thanks!

My tree was alive yesterday but I didn't see any males or queens so I knew they weren't flying.. but they were all over the place.

I can't wait to try!

#15 Offline Lillyrose - Posted April 18 2021 - 6:36 PM

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I've been very much enjoying looking for ants, even though it's not the right time yet. It's not warm enough yet, but it's getting closer.

Today I saw a massive colony running around on my trash can. Several hundred ants running up one side and down the other. I am not sure why they were doing it but they were. Watching them I noticed one was different so I snagged her. I've been trying to learn the ants shapes and kinda identify workers and majors and such. Her shape was odd. Maybe a male?

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Nope .. not a male.. queen ...

Why in the world is the queen running around my trash can? Why aren't the workers all around her? What is going on here?

After thinking it over I realized I would need to release her. The colony was obviously large and they needed her and she needed them.

Soon after I was on discord and realized these were my old friends the ordourous ants and yea ... I'm not regretting letting her go.

I found some other very tiny ants to watch as well. They have a very small simple hole and that's it.

I was doing a little digging today and found termites! I had no idea they lived in dirt ... I thought they were exclusively wood insects. Attached File  Screenshot_20210418-222009_Video Player.jpg   138.86KB   1 downloads

Luckily I had a gallon zip lock baggie and was able to bag me some. I put them in the freezer so they don't grow anymore ... it was almost all nymphs (is that the right word?) And my girls love soft insects.

I'm currently hunting a smallish sized Temnothorax colony to keep ... so I'm looking in sticks and stuff. I've seen some but I haven't been able to locate a colony yet.

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#16 Offline NicholasP - Posted April 18 2021 - 6:40 PM

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Odorous house ants are annoying to keep in my opinion. Especially when they escape. So far I only have 2 colonies (1 for me and 1 that I'm going to sell to someone in AZ). So in my opinion what you did with them was the best option.



#17 Offline NicholasP - Posted April 18 2021 - 6:45 PM

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Also, I think the Tapinoma Sessile queen that you found was out because they were moving from nests because their nest was possibly invaded by another ant species!


Edited by NicholasP, April 18 2021 - 6:45 PM.

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#18 Offline ANTdrew - Posted April 19 2021 - 2:19 AM

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Keep patient and wait for the big nuptial flights that are coming in just a few weeks. Removing established colonies from the wild almost never ends well. I can find you hundreds upon hundreds of Temnothorax queens in June.
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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.


#19 Offline Lillyrose - Posted April 19 2021 - 4:06 AM

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Keep patient and wait for the big nuptial flights that are coming in just a few weeks. Removing established colonies from the wild almost never ends well. I can find you hundreds upon hundreds of Temnothorax queens in June.



I got my blacklight! They don't fly till June? Ok .. I shall be more patient ... I've got to develop more patience :-)


Odorous house ants are annoying to keep in my opinion. Especially when they escape. So far I only have 2 colonies (1 for me and 1 that I'm going to sell to someone in AZ). So in my opinion what you did with them was the best option.


Yea .. they're a pain for sure ... Antdrew kept warning me .. but I couldn't help but try and they were not my friends lol
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#20 Offline NicholasP - Posted April 19 2021 - 9:15 AM

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Keep patient and wait for the big nuptial flights that are coming in just a few weeks. Removing established colonies from the wild almost never ends well. I can find you hundreds upon hundreds of Temnothorax queens in June.

Well... You can take colonies with only around 100 workers which is what I did for my Nylanderia. Doing that won't really harm the ecyosystem. But make sure not to do too much of it as that will harm the ecosystem.


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