I've actually had this colony for several weeks now, but I never had the initiative to make a journal featuring them until now. So here you go I guess.
First, a little info on the species. M. viridium is primarily found in pine barrens and pine scrubs in the eastern United states. In the Northeast, they often replace the rather common M. emarginatum and M. minimum in areas with pure sand, while the less picky monos are willing to nest in less ideal soil conditions. They are predominantly found frequently throughout southeastern Massachusetts, Long Island to coastal NJ, and throughout the Florida pine scrubs. Albeit they are most commonly populated in these select disjunctive locations, they have been collected sparsely throughout most of the United States, excluding the northern/western areas. I found these gals in my local pine barren (same place as the P. pilifera) in Central Massachusetts, which is odd since they rarely make it that far inland this far north.
Anyways, they pretty much dominate the entire barren, and it's been suggested by a friend that they aren't actually composed of multiple individual colonies, but one super colony cooperating across the entire territory with hundreds of egg-laying queens. This would explain how during the collection process I combined several colonies without any conflict.
I ended up collecting 6 queens, and god knows how many workers. However many I got, they have doubled in population by now, and show signs of doubling once more in a month or two. I'd guesstimate they are at 800-1200 workers as of now? I'm not entirely sure, they are hard to count and I'm horrible at counting large numbers of ants . They currently occupy a THA Mini-hearth, which I doubt will contain them for more than a couple months, maybe 3-4 max. The brood pile is the largest I've ever had with any species I've kept, and the queens are laying a ridiculous amount to keep up, and they are eating a ridiculous amount of food in proportion. I've had to start breeding banded crickets as they exhausted my fruit fly cultures in 2 weeks.
So no pictures yet, hopefully I'll take some tomorrow if I'm not too busy, but that's all for now.
Edited by Antkeeper014, May 27 2021 - 6:47 PM.