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can I feed wild pincher bugs(earwigs) to my ants?


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13 replies to this topic

#1 Offline NancyZamora4991 - Posted September 2 2021 - 7:06 PM

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I have dozens of earwigs all over my backyard. would my ants eat them? is it safe for the ants? do I need to freeze them?



#2 Offline strawnkayden1 - Posted September 2 2021 - 7:08 PM

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I would boil/freeze them first because my friend lost a colony to outside bugs awhile ago ie parasites and weed killer.


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#3 Offline NancyZamora4991 - Posted September 2 2021 - 7:22 PM

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ok but would they even eat it



#4 Online AntsUtah - Posted September 2 2021 - 7:28 PM

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Yes, most ant species will take earwigs.


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#5 Offline NancyZamora4991 - Posted September 2 2021 - 7:39 PM

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I heard somewhere that you can feed wild crickets to ants without freezing them is that true because I have hundreds in our backyard (I'm not over-exaggerating)



#6 Online ANTdrew - Posted September 3 2021 - 2:51 AM

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I heard somewhere that you can feed wild crickets to ants without freezing them is that true because I have hundreds in our backyard (I'm not over-exaggerating)

Wild crickets and earwigs are a wonderful food source, but they should be pre-killed before feeding and freezing is the easiest and most humane way to do so. Bear in mind that freezing is not enough to kill mite eggs, so you should dip any wild insects in boiling water for at least three seconds. Welcome to this wacky hobby! Haha

Edited by ANTdrew, September 3 2021 - 2:52 AM.

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Keep ordinary ants in extraordinary ways.


#7 Offline NickAnter - Posted September 3 2021 - 1:08 PM

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I think microwaving them could be easier. Not sure how long one has to do it for though.


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Species being kept:

 

Solenopsis truncorum, Solenopsis "plebeius", Solenopsis validiuscula, Solenopsis sp., Solenopsis xyloni, Solenopsis amblychila, Camponotus vicinus, Camponotus maritimus, Formica cf. subaenescens, Formica cf. aerata, Lasius cf. americanus, Lasius aphidicola, Lasius brevicornis, Lasius nr claviger, Pheidole navigans, Nylanderia vividula, Aphaenogaster occidentalis, Temnothorax rudis, Temnothorax cf. nitens, Pogonomyrmex californicus, and Strumigenys membranifera

 

People are stupid. It explains a lot...


#8 Offline AleeGuy - Posted September 4 2021 - 8:04 AM

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I think microwaving them could be easier. Not sure how long one has to do it for though.


Wouldn't it create a pressure inside of the insect? And even explode? Since their insides are air tight if I'm correct.
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#9 Offline NickAnter - Posted September 4 2021 - 8:19 AM

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Well yes it will create a pressure, and its unlikely that it would explode, I have admittedly only done it once, but for a while, and it didn't even swell to a noticeable degree. For safety, one could simply use a needle and poke a hole in it as one does a potato that is destined for the oven.


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Species being kept:

 

Solenopsis truncorum, Solenopsis "plebeius", Solenopsis validiuscula, Solenopsis sp., Solenopsis xyloni, Solenopsis amblychila, Camponotus vicinus, Camponotus maritimus, Formica cf. subaenescens, Formica cf. aerata, Lasius cf. americanus, Lasius aphidicola, Lasius brevicornis, Lasius nr claviger, Pheidole navigans, Nylanderia vividula, Aphaenogaster occidentalis, Temnothorax rudis, Temnothorax cf. nitens, Pogonomyrmex californicus, and Strumigenys membranifera

 

People are stupid. It explains a lot...


#10 Offline AleeGuy - Posted September 4 2021 - 9:00 AM

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Well yes it will create a pressure, and its unlikely that it would explode, I have admittedly only done it once, but for a while, and it didn't even swell to a noticeable degree. For safety, one could simply use a needle and poke a hole in it as one does a potato that is destined for the oven.


Maybe it would have different effects on different kinds of insects? Like some could just bloat like a balloon, some barely, and some won't at all. Yeah needle would probably help, but I would rather just freeze it at that point to be honest lol.
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#11 Offline ConcordAntman - Posted September 4 2021 - 9:27 AM

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I'd have some questions about microwaving. Using 1-2 seconds on a low power setting should be more than enough to boil the water content of an insect and coagulate its proteins. Since ants drink the body fluids for nutrition and moisture you'd be evaporating and coagulating anything they'd be able to eat. Microwaving the water to flash boil your feeders might be the more nutritious route.


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#12 Offline Dumpling - Posted September 26 2021 - 9:10 PM

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My small camponotus vicinus colony completely ignored the earwigs I gave to them. I would recommend just buying some feeders as they're quite cheap at most places and you usually won't have to worry about pesticides and/or parasites. To me it seems worth it to spend a few bucks on feeders, as you won't have to stress about boiling, freezing or microwaving what you feed your ants.  :D


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#13 Offline NancyZamora4991 - Posted September 26 2021 - 9:13 PM

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yeah I fed a cut up one to a wild colony and it ignored it. I'm sticking to mealworms


Edited by NancyZamora4991, September 26 2021 - 9:14 PM.

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#14 Offline ConcordAntman - Posted October 1 2021 - 4:24 AM

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Beware, it has been my experience that the feeders you introduce to your colonies are a potential source of parasites (primary mites in my case). I’d still recommend freeze and flash boil before feeding. If you’re comfortable that there hasn’t been any pesticide use in your area you could catch wild feeders but still freeze and boil. 


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