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Herdo's Pheidole sp. (Last updated May 28th, 2017)

pheidole arizona phoenix beginner first

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51 replies to this topic

#41 Offline LC3 - Posted August 24 2015 - 9:59 AM

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Yaaay and update. Congratulation you got Majors :)

I'm so sorry your best friend passed away :*(   

 

 

P.S You also might want to change the tiyle from July 28th to August 24th.


Edited by LC3, August 24 2015 - 10:18 AM.

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#42 Offline William. T - Posted August 24 2015 - 11:52 AM

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Great colony, and great outworld.


Species I keep:

 

1 Lasius cf. Neoniger 30 workers

1 Camponotus sp. 15 workers

20 Tetramorium SpE 30 workers

1 T. Sessile 200 workers

 


#43 Offline Pulliamj - Posted August 24 2015 - 2:17 PM

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Sorry about your loss. Your colony is looking good.

#44 Offline Alexant - Posted August 25 2015 - 1:47 AM

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I am very sorry for your loss.



#45 Offline BrittonLS - Posted August 25 2015 - 2:23 PM

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Look at those big fat heads. Awesome!

Edited by BrittonLS, August 25 2015 - 2:23 PM.


#46 Offline Herdo - Posted August 26 2015 - 4:18 AM

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Thanks for all the replies everyone.

 

And thanks LC3 for reminding me to change the date!



#47 Offline Mdrogun - Posted September 10 2015 - 5:06 PM

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Did you ever put a couple queens together? If you have multiple queens the colony will normally grow a lot faster and overall be more resistant to losing their ability to reproduce.


Currently Keeping:
Trachymyrmex septentrionalis

Pheidole pilifera

Forelius sp. (Monogynous, bicolored) "Midwestern Forelius"
Crematogaster cerasi

Pheidole bicarinata

Aphaenogaster rudis

Camponotus chromaiodes

Formica sp. (microgena species)

Nylanderia cf. arenivega


#48 Offline BrittonLS - Posted September 10 2015 - 5:32 PM

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Did you ever put a couple queens together? If you have multiple queens the colony will normally grow a lot faster and overall be more resistant to losing their ability to reproduce.


Just test if they'll tolerate each other first. The Pheidole queens that flew here recently are SUPER aggressive to each other.

#49 Offline Herdo - Posted May 28 2017 - 9:00 AM

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May 28th, 2017

 

 

 

It's been a while since my last update.  My original Pheidole sp. colony died sometime last year.  My thinking is their old nest was not keeping them hydrated enough.  I found a few more queens last summer and also purchased an AntsCanada Hybrid Nest; the Lasius version.  This new colony was a bit slower to grow this time around and only had a handful of workers by the fall of last year.  I keep the colony in an un-airconditioned room so in the winter they enter a pretty deep hibernation. 

 

The last couple months it's warmed up and the colony has once again become fairly active.  I'd say they are at about 20 workers now and growing, so I feel it's time to start updating the journal again. 

 

I've been feeding them exclusively wet cat food (Fancy Feast Pate), and they seemed to eat it just fine.  This was nice because I didn't have to buy anything special, I just fed them when I fed my cat.  I'd rotate between chicken and beef flavors, and the larve have little black spots so I knew they were eating.  They don't like any of the seafood varieties by the way, they just bury it.  I buy my cats food online through Amazon Prime as the shipping is free and it's actually cheaper, but the last time I went to buy it Amazon was out of stock so I had to go to PetSmart.  While there I figured I'd pick up some small crickets, because I've been wondering if they'd like some variety.

 

 

I crushed the crickets head and placed it in their outworld last night.  I wasn't expecting much, but decided to sit and watch for a while.  I couldn't have been more wrong about their reaction.

 

 

 

When I gave them the cricket there was only one lone worker exploring.  It took her a while, but she eventually bumped into the cricket.  She ran around the cricket several times, tasting as she went.  This was very different from their reaction to the wet cat food, which they usually run and hide from at first.

 

 

 

After about 20 seconds she ran off trying to find the entrance to her nest.  She ran faster than I thought was physically possible.  She traversed the 14" wide outworld from one end to the other in a few seconds.  Once she found the nest it took about 5 seconds for a conga line of her sisters to come marching out, about six in total.  They marched straight to the cricket and started munching away.

 

 

 

Then I saw something I thought I'd never see.  A major in the vinyl tubing connecting the nest to the outworld.  I've never seen a major leave the nest with this species.  She would run maybe an inch out, but then quickly run back in.  She did this about five times, running back into the nest for a few seconds each time as if to check on the colony.  Finally she barreled out and didn't stop.  The blurry pic below is her stopping in the outworld for a split second right after leaving the vinyl tubing.  This was probably her first glimpse of the world outside of her nest.  One of her sisters greeted her and led her to the tasty treat.

 

 

 

She immediately started cutting up the larger appendages with her powerful mandibles while her sisters carried off the pieces back to the nest.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I was able to get a quick video of them processing the cricket.  You can see the major cutting while the others carry pieces back into the nest.

 

 

 

 

I guess it's important to feed your colonies a variety of foods.  I thought my colony was well satiated, but I was apparently very wrong.  I'm now realizing that maybe this is the reason for their slow growth this whole time.  I'm hoping to see a large boom in population soon like I did with the first colony.

 

As a side note, I am very pleased with the Hybrid Nest.  Hydration is a huge problem here in Arizona, and the nests can go from well hydrated to bone dry in a matter of hours.  Being able to pour a large amount of water into the reservoir and not worry about it for a few days has been a godsend.  Even when the reservoir runs dry, the cotton under the nest stays moist for days, so I don't fear them drying out anytime soon.  

 

I'm expecting some update worthy material over the next few months, so hopefully this thread will be active again.


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#50 Offline Leo - Posted May 28 2017 - 11:35 PM

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congrats on the major, they can be quite timid at first, my pheidole became crazy aggresive after they reached 500 workers, the workers will now happily attack my hand and anything new
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#51 Offline Herdo - Posted May 29 2017 - 6:23 AM

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congrats on the major, they can be quite timid at first, my pheidole became crazy aggresive after they reached 500 workers, the workers will now happily attack my hand and anything new


Wow, that's interesting. I don't know what this species max population is, but 500 would be pretty crazy. A lot of the Pheidole here is the desert live in small colonies of under 100 from what I understand.

#52 Offline Leo - Posted May 31 2017 - 1:35 AM

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haha i live in china, there are also 4 queens in the colony so not so suprising





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