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Help Novice ID first ant species

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#1 Offline FireFighterDuck - Posted May 25 2022 - 4:37 PM



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After watching several AC videos that I randomly stumbled upon, I got the idea to try to locate a queen of my own to keep. I located several nests in my front yard. I live in Dallas, NC (Gaston County). Our yard is comprised of mostly red clay soil. I dug into the clay with a small trowel, approximately 3-4 inches deep. To my surprise I located the queen almost immediately. It was a small nest, and I only saw maybe 6 ants in addition to the queen. I was able to capture 3 worker ants (I think) and a queen. She very clearly still has wings. I am wondering if she has already mated? I would think so, as she was in a nest with at least a few worker ants. I am assuming this means she mated and laid the eggs that became the ants that I found in her nest. Anyway, I would love some insight into the species I have found. My initial searching online leads me to believe this is some sort of red Carpenter ant species.

Any help is certainly welcome.


Thank you, 


Ant Noob

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#2 Offline ColAnt735 - Posted May 25 2022 - 4:50 PM


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Camponotus casteneus alates and workers. Nice find! Although it is highly unlikely that she is not mated as nuptial flights are happening at the moment for this species.

Edited by ColAnt735, May 25 2022 - 4:54 PM.

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Keeping ants since 2020 

I keep:

Myrmicinae: Solenopsis molesta( 2 queens). Tetramorium immigrans ( 3 colonies with the biggest nearing 800 workers!),

Crematogaster cerasi  :yahoo:  ( 1 colony with a worker). Temnothorax  curvispinosus ( 1 queen with colony of 2 workers).

Formicinae: Prenolepis imparis ( 2 single queen colonies). Lasius brevicornis  :yahoo:( 19 founding queens) haven't seen many journals of them. Lasius Neoniger (a founding queen).Formica incerta( 1 colony with 22 workers)


Previously kept: Pogonomyrmex occidentalis   ( 1 colony with 9 workers). 


As you can tell I like ants

#3 Offline VenomousBeast - Posted May 25 2022 - 4:51 PM


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I hate to break it to yah, but the chances are that she is unmated and that is her parent colony. But I can at least provide an ID for your ant here!
That's Camponotus casteanus. They are flying now but they tend to do so at evening and early morning (if it's warm enough, normally 75°F-80°F)
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1:Tetramorium immigrans
1:Stigmatomma pallipes
1:Proceratium sp.
2:Prenolepis imparis (founding)
2:Camponotus casteanus
8:Camponotus chromaiodes
1:Vollenhovia emeryi
1:Trachymyrmex septentrionalis
1:Crematogaster sp. Queen (founding)

#4 Online AntsCali098 - Posted May 26 2022 - 10:15 AM


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Wait and see if she lays eggs. It is impossible to confirm that see is mated or not until you know she gets workers. If she doesn't lay for 2 weeks, release her.n

Edited by AntsCali098, May 26 2022 - 10:15 AM.

#5 Offline ANTdrew - Posted May 26 2022 - 12:00 PM


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Wait and see if she lays eggs. It is impossible to confirm that see is mated or not until you know she gets workers. If she doesn't lay for 2 weeks, release her.n

Then he will ruin her chance of ever mating. This queen was clearly removed from a colony pre-flight and should be returned ASAP.
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"The ants are a people not strong, yet they prepare their meat in the summer." Prov. 30:25
Keep ordinary ants in extraordinary ways.

#6 Offline FireFighterDuck - Posted June 1 2022 - 6:00 AM



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Thank you all for your helpful information. I released the queen I had captured, after considering my options.

I went looking again last night and happened upon another Camponotus castaneus in my front yard. This queen had no wings. I felt this would be a better queen to keep. I got her settled into a test tube setup. Now I'm just trying to resist the urge to go look at her every hour. I know, patience. Haha

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