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Aphaenogaster occidentalis (A-Colony)

aphaenogaster colony myrmecology

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27 replies to this topic

#1 Offline westhollywoodant - Posted June 21 2022 - 11:00 PM

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I got two colonies of Aphaenogaster occidentalis, A-Colony and B-Colony (https://www.formicul...talis-b-colony/).
A-colony here has a bunch of larve and about 15-20 workers.
Recieved end of May.
Attached File  2022 05.31.jpg   818.87KB   15 downloads
May 31st
Attached File  2022 05.31b.jpg   892.26KB   16 downloads
May 31st

A lot of the Larve have turned to Pupa.
Attached File  2022 06.12.jpeg   312.29KB   14 downloads
June 12th


Edited by westhollywoodant, July 26 2022 - 9:51 AM.

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#2 Offline TacticalHandleGaming - Posted June 22 2022 - 8:26 AM

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You'll love these ants! My colony has been so fun to watch grow. The feeding response itself is worth it alone! 


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Currently kept species

L. neoniger, P. occidentalis, C. modoc, C. novaeboracensis, C. vicinus, T. immigrans, A. occidentalis, S. molesta, P. imparis, M. kennedyi, M semirufus, F. pacifica, P. californica, M. ergatogyna.

 

Previously kept species

T. rugatulus, B. depilis.

 

Looking for

Myrmecocystus pyramicus, Myrmecocystus testaceus

Pheidole creightoni, Pheidole inquilina, Crematogaster coarctata, Crematogaster mutans

My youtube channel.  My ant Etsy store - Millennium Ants


#3 Offline westhollywoodant - Posted June 22 2022 - 9:20 AM

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Thanks! The only thing I honestly hate about this species is they don’t have social stomach so they are tedious feeding and very messy from what I’ve seen so far. It’s way more chill with social stomach species Based on my limited experience haha. But still cool 😎
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#4 Offline TacticalHandleGaming - Posted June 22 2022 - 9:22 AM

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Mine have been great about taking their trash to the forging area. Biggest issue I've had is them clogging the occasional liquid feeder. 


Edited by TacticalHandleGaming, June 22 2022 - 9:23 AM.

Currently kept species

L. neoniger, P. occidentalis, C. modoc, C. novaeboracensis, C. vicinus, T. immigrans, A. occidentalis, S. molesta, P. imparis, M. kennedyi, M semirufus, F. pacifica, P. californica, M. ergatogyna.

 

Previously kept species

T. rugatulus, B. depilis.

 

Looking for

Myrmecocystus pyramicus, Myrmecocystus testaceus

Pheidole creightoni, Pheidole inquilina, Crematogaster coarctata, Crematogaster mutans

My youtube channel.  My ant Etsy store - Millennium Ants


#5 Offline westhollywoodant - Posted June 22 2022 - 9:41 AM

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Oh interesting. I don’t use a liquid feeder as they don’t have social stomachs so feel like it won’t be very useful as only workers on surface will get it. They love fruit flies though and keeps the waste down. Only give them like half a dozen a week as of now.
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#6 Offline TacticalHandleGaming - Posted June 22 2022 - 9:49 AM

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They still seem to get the sugars to the colony. I think they just have very small social stomachs. So it's not the most efficent way for them to get sugars. 


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Currently kept species

L. neoniger, P. occidentalis, C. modoc, C. novaeboracensis, C. vicinus, T. immigrans, A. occidentalis, S. molesta, P. imparis, M. kennedyi, M semirufus, F. pacifica, P. californica, M. ergatogyna.

 

Previously kept species

T. rugatulus, B. depilis.

 

Looking for

Myrmecocystus pyramicus, Myrmecocystus testaceus

Pheidole creightoni, Pheidole inquilina, Crematogaster coarctata, Crematogaster mutans

My youtube channel.  My ant Etsy store - Millennium Ants


#7 Offline westhollywoodant - Posted June 22 2022 - 10:07 AM

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Oh interesting. From what I’ve researched they don’t have a social stomach and I have never seen either of my colonies do trophalaxis (however you spell it 😂).
But yeah, interesting 😎🐜
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#8 Offline TacticalHandleGaming - Posted June 22 2022 - 10:54 AM

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My queen is still alive somehow if that's the case, so I must be doing something right.  :lol:


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Currently kept species

L. neoniger, P. occidentalis, C. modoc, C. novaeboracensis, C. vicinus, T. immigrans, A. occidentalis, S. molesta, P. imparis, M. kennedyi, M semirufus, F. pacifica, P. californica, M. ergatogyna.

 

Previously kept species

T. rugatulus, B. depilis.

 

Looking for

Myrmecocystus pyramicus, Myrmecocystus testaceus

Pheidole creightoni, Pheidole inquilina, Crematogaster coarctata, Crematogaster mutans

My youtube channel.  My ant Etsy store - Millennium Ants


#9 Offline westhollywoodant - Posted June 22 2022 - 11:37 AM

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Right. They bring food into the nest and then the queen eats directly from the source. Just like the larve 👍🏼👍🏼😎
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#10 Offline westhollywoodant - Posted June 22 2022 - 11:40 AM

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I encourage you to do more research on the species so you have a better understanding of how they feed 😁 you feed your ants 6 fruit flies a day, the same reason they have such a strong response to feeding. Otherwise they would only need to send a considerably smaller amount of workers out. They bring food into the nest to be shared by all due to the lack of social stomach. They don’t have a small one, they simply don’t have a social stomach.
From what I’ve researched anyway 🐜💚🍻

Edited by westhollywoodant, June 22 2022 - 11:54 AM.

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#11 Offline westhollywoodant - Posted June 22 2022 - 4:08 PM

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Up to around 25 workers not and two Male alates. They must of been well fed as I believe the workers lay eggs and typically eat them but if well fed they will develop into male alates.
June 18th, 2022
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June 18th, 2022
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June 18th, 2022
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June 18th, 2022
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Edited by westhollywoodant, June 22 2022 - 6:01 PM.


#12 Offline westhollywoodant - Posted June 24 2022 - 7:34 AM

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Up to about 30 workers and half a dozen males. Colony seems to be doing well. 

June 24th

Attached File  IMG_3814.jpg   270.93KB   10 downloads


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#13 Offline TacticalHandleGaming - Posted June 24 2022 - 7:43 AM

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Interesting. I've yet to have any alates at all. Yet I have several hundred workers.  :thinking:


Currently kept species

L. neoniger, P. occidentalis, C. modoc, C. novaeboracensis, C. vicinus, T. immigrans, A. occidentalis, S. molesta, P. imparis, M. kennedyi, M semirufus, F. pacifica, P. californica, M. ergatogyna.

 

Previously kept species

T. rugatulus, B. depilis.

 

Looking for

Myrmecocystus pyramicus, Myrmecocystus testaceus

Pheidole creightoni, Pheidole inquilina, Crematogaster coarctata, Crematogaster mutans

My youtube channel.  My ant Etsy store - Millennium Ants


#14 Offline westhollywoodant - Posted June 24 2022 - 11:23 AM

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The workers lay eggs and typically just eat them. Which is how once the colony gets big it is able to self maintain to a certain degree. But if plenty of food is provided then some of the workers eggs will advance to larvae and then will develop into males. Cool, but they don’t do anything and take away from colony’s food. So not good but also not terribly bad. The guy I got the colony from must of fed them very well and as a result I got the a handful of larvae from the workers.
From what I have researched anyway.
That is also a development from the absence of a social stomach.
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#15 Offline westhollywoodant - Posted June 25 2022 - 7:29 AM

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So one of the Alates seems to have been mating or at least tried to mate.

Interesting! 

I have a video of it but this site won't let me upload. Bummer. But interesting all the same. 

 



#16 Offline westhollywoodant - Posted June 25 2022 - 7:39 AM

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I was able to grab some screenshots from the video. 

Attached File  IMG_3843.jpg   349.54KB   9 downloads

Attached File  IMG_3842.jpg   229.63KB   10 downloads


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#17 Offline westhollywoodant - Posted June 27 2022 - 4:26 PM

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I connected a Mini Tower from AntsCanada to the colony last night and they really like the moist substrate and have tunnled to the bottom already. Seem to be excavating a chamber now. like 10 workers have been staying in and working in the mini tower. The queen and the rest of colony are in the flat formicarium still.

Attached File  2022 06.27 (4).jpg   260.5KB   10 downloads

Attached File  2022 06.27 (5).jpg   468.91KB   8 downloads

Got some good Macro shots of the queen. 

Attached File  2022 06.27 (2).jpg   387.8KB   9 downloads

June 27th 2022 

Attached File  2022 06.27 (1).jpg   240.97KB   9 downloads

Attached File  2022 06.27 (3).jpg   253.84KB   9 downloads

 



#18 Offline westhollywoodant - Posted July 6 2022 - 8:04 AM

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Colony seems to be doing well. Hard to tell if brood pile is just slowing or if they have most in the soil part of the nest. They are still building and digging in the mini tower. 

Attached File  2022 07.05.jpg   254.69KB   6 downloads

Most of the late stage larve and pupa have emerged as workers and a handful of male alates. 

July 6th 2022

Attached File  2022 07.06.jpg   344.54KB   6 downloads

July 6th 2022

Attached File  2022 07.06a.jpg   256.87KB   6 downloads



#19 Offline westhollywoodant - Posted July 7 2022 - 7:41 PM

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Gave them some walnut crumbs they loved. 

Couple more macros of worker and brood. 

Attached File  IMG_4166.jpeg   237.81KB   7 downloads



#20 Offline NotAxo - Posted July 8 2022 - 6:28 AM

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I wish we had aphenogaster in India ;-;

Currently raising : C. Parius (2x), C. Vitiosus (2x), Carebara Diversa (1x), C. irratians (2x), M. brunnea (1x)

Have raised : Solenopsis

Enjoy anting, NotAxo :D






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