I'm a very new ant-keeper (about 1 year in, now) so my opinion isn't worth much.
I opt to always freeze, then boil the insect prey I feed my ants.
The freezing is a relatively painless way to euthanize an insect and the boiling that follows is suitable for killing any mites and/or internal nematode parasites that may be present in the insect.
My belief is that ants attempting to kill a live insect is part of the natural order. However, in a captive setting where that insect is not given a "fair chance" to potentially flee or ward off its attackers, you are taking the "sport" out of the situation and stacking the odds unfairly in the ants' favor.
I agree a lot with this. Its like with fishermen like myself that use ultralight gear to give the fish a fair chance (if he breaks the hook off it will rust out in less than a month). It's also a lot more fun, in my opinion. It's and art and not everyone gets it right. I'm getting a little off track here, but here's my opinion on the matter:
I don't feed live prey to most of my ants. Its generally not worth it unless you have a genus (Camponotus
for example) that has been observed to produce more majors with something to defend against. I don't have a strong opinion on this subject, I just feed prekilled insects (crushed with forceps) for the convenience of not having them jump out everywhere or run all over the place. The ants can also have a hard time killing said insect if it isn't already injured unless you have a fairly large colony.
Edited by TennesseeAnts, July 16 2021 - 9:36 PM.