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Phasor's Phounding Queens

queen founding anting

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#1 Offline PhasorShift - Posted April 9 2021 - 10:49 AM

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I can't not use a ph sound pun and alliteration in the title.

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Anyway, I've decided to create this journal to document all of the queens I find in my adventures, of all species, and their growth and founding in their tubes. Once a queen's first nanitics emerge for a colony I intend to keep, I will create a new journal for that specific species. This way I don't create lots of empty journals for queens that don't survive, or that I decide to sell. It will also keep the species journals free of the clutter and fluff posting that comes in the early days.

As I aquire new queen ants, I'll post about it here. I'll upload photos, ask my questions, and get all my early founding advice in this thread. I just feel this will keep my Ant Keeping Journals more organized and easier to follow, since I'm not just creating a single mega-thread.

Anyway, thanks for joining, and happy hunting!
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#2 Offline M_Ants - Posted April 9 2021 - 3:31 PM

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That last queen looks neat. Is it a parasitic lasius? 


Veromessor pergandei- 1 queens 50ish workers

Myrmecocystus testaceus

Crematogaster sp. 

Acromyrmex

Camponotus yogi

Pogonomyrmex

https://www.youtube....FG7utFVBA/about


#3 Offline PhasorShift - Posted April 9 2021 - 3:33 PM

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That last queen looks neat. Is it a parasitic lasius?


Yes, it is. I think it's aphidicola. I'm not quite ready for parasitic ants just yet, so the few I caught the other day are chilling in the fridge. I'm gonna make another post about them and the imparis I caught in a bit.
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#4 Offline PhasorShift - Posted April 9 2021 - 6:43 PM

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Here are some of the queens I found on my last (successful) trip to the park. In total, I got six Prenolepis imparis and five four Lasius aphidicola. The p.imps I grouped into two test tubes with three queens each, and the parasitic Lasius I put in their own tubes and put in the fridge, until such a time that I can find hosts for them, or someone willing to take a lonely queen. I still don't think I'm quite ready to go through the hassle of founding a parasitic colony.

I really hope I'm lucky with these imparis. I hear they're a pain to raise, and have poor survival rates. I'll keep them in the dark for a week or two, then see if I can coax them into laying.

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#5 Offline ANTS_KL - Posted April 10 2021 - 12:00 AM

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neat


neat


Ants epic :D
YouTube: https://m.youtube.co...uKsahGliSH7EqOQ

My current ants: Camponotus irritans, 2x Camponotus parius, 2x Odontomachus simillimus, Oecophylla smaragdina

 

Death count: idk there's too many that I've lost :(

Also I got an antlion o-0


#6 Offline PhasorShift - Posted April 17 2021 - 8:23 AM

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I checked on the imparis queens today, and much to my surprise both groups have eggs! I had heard they don't like to lay, and often need to be fed before they're willing. But both of my tubes already have small egg piles in there~

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#7 Offline PhasorShift - Posted April 17 2021 - 8:28 AM

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I also checked on my Lasius queens. Not much new there, though I feel the cocoons are getting close to ready.

However, several of the tubes have pretty discolored cotton, and in a couple it looks like the queens have shredded it to make a kind of substrate at the water end. This normal? Anything to be concerned about?

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#8 Offline ANTdrew - Posted April 17 2021 - 8:30 AM

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That color on the cotton is totally normal. No sweat.
"The ants are a people not strong, yet they prepare their meat in the summer." Prov. 30:25
Keep ordinary ants in extraordinary ways.

#9 Offline Kaelwizard - Posted April 17 2021 - 8:31 AM

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Queens often pull at the the cotton but that looks like mold.



#10 Offline PhasorShift - Posted April 29 2021 - 5:57 PM

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Bit of an update, some things happening in the small worlds of test tubes.

First, not much has changed with my imparis queens yet. They're still just chilling on a small pile of eggs. Looks just the same as before, so no new pictures.

Next, some bad news. One of my Lasius queens has died, after so long... It was one of the queens in the tube of three, so the colony will still go on. I don't think the other queens killed her, I think she just died. Maybe the mold on the cotton was getting too bad. In any case, poor little curled up ant.

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There is also what looks to be a nanitic that died right as it emerged. Very nearly had workers in that tube, I hope some of the others survive.

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Most of the other Lasius queens look much the same. Cotton is rather discolored in a few of the tubes, water is starting to run low in many of those. I'll take care of that soon. Two of the queens have eggs that have not developed at all yet, so I think those two are infertile. The others all have pupae that look like they're just about to... Wait, what's this?

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One of the Lasius queens has her first two workers! One of them an incredibly fresh callow! Look at that pale color~

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I was actually so excited about noticing the workers, I knocked the mealworms I was feeding to my Crematogaster straight into my lap as moved stuff around to get a better picture... Oops.

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But yay! I now have another growing colony! A few more workers emerged a couple days later, so I'll be moving the reports of this particular tube back to my Lasius journal.



#11 Offline PhasorShift - Posted April 29 2021 - 6:08 PM

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Moving day!

 

I noticed many of my test tube setups were getting very low on water, so I decided to try moving them to new tubes. They all had brood, and some very close to (or with brand new) nanitics, so I didn't want to dump, at least not right away.

 

After fussing and experimenting for a while on how to connect two tubes without completely sealing them off (even looking up possible connector designs to print on my new 3D printer) I ended up settling on running a section of straw between the old and new tubes, with cotton filling the gaps. It may not be the most secure method, but it's probably the simplest.

 

Here are all the tubes connected together, old ones on the right and new glass tubes on the left.

 

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The new tubes have the heating cable under them while the old ones will be out in the relatively chilly air of my basement, and I'll keep the light on them with the new tubes covered. Hopefully that will be enough to convince everyone to move house into the fresh tubes.

 

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I'll have to figure out a way to get my Crematogaster into a new tube, with their little outworld there, but they still have a decent amount of water left.

 

I will check on them and disconnect the old tubes as they move into the new ones.


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#12 Offline PhasorShift - Posted April 29 2021 - 6:10 PM

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(forgot to mention I was also concerned about the mold in many of the tubes, which is also why I wanted to move them to new ones)



#13 Offline ANTdrew - Posted April 29 2021 - 6:11 PM

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Your Crematogaster will actually be fine with just water to drink from the outworld.
"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 PhasorShift - Posted April 29 2021 - 6:13 PM

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Your Crematogaster will actually be fine with just water to drink from the outworld.


True, but there's not a lot of room in that little container. I don't know if two liquid feeders would even fit. I might just get them a bigger one anyway. I got some time.

#15 Offline PhasorShift - Posted September 6 2021 - 2:33 PM

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Heyo! Long time no see.

 

Been quite a while since I last posted here, so I figured I'd give an update. Just a quick summary of the past five months.

 

First off, here's the founding queens I have right now. These are the ones without workers.

 

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You'll notice there aren't many, and a few new ones from before. I haven't been anting much, but managed to find a few queens around. 

 

On the left is a Formica, likely fusca group. That one is a bit of a sad story. She laid a few eggs that developed all the way to pupae, but only one made it to worker. I moved her over to my active queens rack for a little while, but the one worker died and there hasn't really been any brood since. That's why she has the feeder. Hopefully she recovers and lays a new batch. Here's a pic from a while ago..

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The next two tubes I believe are tetramorium immigrans. I found three of them right on my doorstep all at once one day. I think this is one of them... (It's hard searching through old pictures and trying to remember what they were)

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The next one I think is my last remaining Neoniger without brood. All the others have either died or gotten their workers. Two of them I've sold, and I still have three tubes remaining. One has about a dozen workers, the other two have one or two. More on them in my Lasius journal.

 

The last one is camponotus, I think pennsylvanicus. Found her in a log on a hike through the woods. I definitely felt quite awkward digging around in rotting old logs though...

 

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Some of the queens I had before are now in the active queens rack, and so will be getting their own thread soon! Especially my p.imparis. if you recall, I had two tubes, each with three queens. They both got workers, but one of them... I go check one day and every thing in the tube is dead. All three queens, every single worker. I don't know what happened, and all of my other ants were fine. Oh well...

 

My other imparis, well....

 

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#16 Offline NickAnter - Posted September 6 2021 - 2:35 PM

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Very cool!

 

That fusca group Formica looks like its in the neogagates group to me.


Species being kept:

 

 Solenopsis "plebeius", Camponotus maritimus, Formica cf. subaenescens, Formica cf. aerata, Lasius cf. americanus, Lasius aphidicola, Lasius brevicornis, Lasius nr claviger, Nylanderia vividula, Temnothorax nevadensis, Solenopsis validiuscula, Solenopsis truncorum, Solenopsis xyloni, Formica perpilosa, Formica lasiodes, Pogonomyrmex californicus, Pogonomyrmex salinus, and Myrmecocystus testaceus!!!!

 

Hoping to find this year:

Myrmecocystus, Liometopum occidentale, Camponotus essigi, Camponotus fragilis, Manica bradleyi, Formica perpilosa, Pheidole hyatti, and a Parasitic Formica sp.

 

People are stupid. It explains a lot...


#17 Offline PhasorShift - Posted September 6 2021 - 2:36 PM

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Very cool!

That fusca group Formica looks like its in the neogagates group to me.


Perhaps. I'm no good at IDing, and I caught her a while ago. I think that's what some others said she might be, but could be wrong.





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