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Mysterious Camponotus pennslyvanicus queen found today.


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#1 Offline futurebird - Posted August 4 2022 - 7:52 PM

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My husband called me out on our roof deck today "Look, dear it's an ant! She's huge!"
I wasn't that excited at first. Although ants of any kind are rare on our roof. This is the roof of a six story apartment building in the south bronx. The roof is silver painted tar and it's hot out there. Sometimes I keep a few plants, but if I don't water them daily they all dry out. It's not a great place for an ant colony. So, as I made my way outside I wondered what my husband could have found? A pavement ant queen? A wasp? The more I considered it the less sense it made. I've never seen ants out on the roof. It's huge. The building is steal and brick. There are parks nearby, but we live in a little patch of deadly urban heat island.

Then I saw the ant! It was definitely a carpenter ant... huge, on close inspection a queen! She was making her way in that fast waddle that queen ants have across the middle of the roof. Where did she come from?

A Camponotus pennslyvanicus queen somehow ended up on our roof in August. It couldn't be that she just landed from a nuptial flight. These ants flew months ago. So what has this ant been doing since May? She had no wings and was all alone. 

Could she have climbed up the side of the building?

Maybe she was living in the walls? (though there isn't much wood there)

I'm so proud of my husband for finding her! 

What is the least likely place where you have found a queen?


Starting this July I'm posting videos of my ants every week on youTube.

I like to make relaxing videos that capture the joy of watching ants.

If that sounds like your kind of thing... follow me >here<


#2 Offline FloridaAnts - Posted August 4 2022 - 9:10 PM

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My husband called me out on our roof deck today "Look, dear it's an ant! She's huge!"
I wasn't that excited at first. Although ants of any kind are rare on our roof. This is the roof of a six story apartment building in the south bronx. The roof is silver painted tar and it's hot out there. Sometimes I keep a few plants, but if I don't water them daily they all dry out. It's not a great place for an ant colony. So, as I made my way outside I wondered what my husband could have found? A pavement ant queen? A wasp? The more I considered it the less sense it made. I've never seen ants out on the roof. It's huge. The building is steal and brick. There are parks nearby, but we live in a little patch of deadly urban heat island.
Then I saw the ant! It was definitely a carpenter ant... huge, on close inspection a queen! She was making her way in that fast waddle that queen ants have across the middle of the roof. Where did she come from?
A Camponotus pennslyvanicus queen somehow ended up on our roof in August. It couldn't be that she just landed from a nuptial flight. These ants flew months ago. So what has this ant been doing since May? She had no wings and was all alone. 
Could she have climbed up the side of the building?
Maybe she was living in the walls? (though there isn't much wood there)
I'm so proud of my husband for finding her! 
What is the least likely place where you have found a queen?



This is my personal theory-

It got too hot for her founding chamber so she left after consuming the brood

She is a “late flyer? Who’s cocooon hatched really late, so the workers evicted her. Then, she flew on your roof and shed her wings. More likely first option.
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Check out my Camponotus socius journal!
https://www.formicul...socius-journal/
Check out my Florida Carpenter Ant journal!(Camponotus floridanus, and Camponotus tortoganus)
https://www.formicul...naltwo-species/
Check out my Odontomachus ruginodis(Trap-Jaw ants) journal!
https://www.formicul...urnal/?p=215735
Check out my Trachymyrmex septrionalis(Fungus farmers) journal!
https://www.formicul...onalis-journal/

#3 Offline United-Ants - Posted August 4 2022 - 9:27 PM

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This is very common for camponotus modoc which is similar to camponotus pennsylvanicus to fly may to late August
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Sometimes, the only way to heal our wounds is to make peace with the demons who created them. 

Dr Serizawa godzilla

a True soldier doesn't fight because he hates what's in front of him, but because he loves what's behind him. some guy from yt


#4 Offline FloridaAnts - Posted August 4 2022 - 9:32 PM

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This is very common for camponotus modoc which is similar to camponotus pennsylvanicus to fly may to late August


I just don’t know C. pennsylvanicus flight for another state. In different parts of Florida Camponotus fly in completely different months, same species. I have seen quite a few people catching C. pennsylvanicus queens in the last 2 weeks though.
  • futurebird likes this
Check out my Camponotus socius journal!
https://www.formicul...socius-journal/
Check out my Florida Carpenter Ant journal!(Camponotus floridanus, and Camponotus tortoganus)
https://www.formicul...naltwo-species/
Check out my Odontomachus ruginodis(Trap-Jaw ants) journal!
https://www.formicul...urnal/?p=215735
Check out my Trachymyrmex septrionalis(Fungus farmers) journal!
https://www.formicul...onalis-journal/

#5 Offline ANTdrew - Posted August 5 2022 - 3:11 AM

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Another bummer possibility is that she is an unmated nest reject. Unlike some species that kill and eat queens that never flew, Camponotus forcibly evict them. Only time will tell if she is mated or not.
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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 futurebird - Posted August 5 2022 - 4:56 AM

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I offered her some food and sugar water over night. She drank some of the sugar, may have nibbled the cricket leg. Now she's in a clean test tube for the next few weeks in the "ant drawer" I don't expect her to lay this summer... but we shall see. She's very healthy and lively. I'll keep you all updated. Warned my husband not to get too attached to her... she could just randomly die given how randomly she showed up at our door step. 

Maybe my other colonies are posting things on the internet telling queens to come here for "Free food, no predators, decent lodgings, climate controlled ant hotel"

You know how that one old lady with all the cats always has cats showing up to her house? Well that's me but for ants. 


  • sL0wNsteady, robbiesants and FloridaAnts like this

Starting this July I'm posting videos of my ants every week on youTube.

I like to make relaxing videos that capture the joy of watching ants.

If that sounds like your kind of thing... follow me >here<





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