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My first ants, Pogonomyrmex Occidentalis

journal pogonomyrmex occidentalis

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#41 Offline Full_Frontal_Yeti - Posted April 5 2023 - 8:03 AM

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The colony continues to do well. There are a wide range of larvae growth sizes that get laid out on the water tower. Though with all the tending ants i can't get a good picture. It looks like the Queen has been consistently laying eggs over time sense arrival, and i assume she still is.

The colony likes to move the pupae and larvae back forth between being on the water tower or being held against the wall where the heat is generated. But they keep the egg clutch mostly out of sight held in the little bit of plugged up side port. Once in a while(like once every 2-4 weeks) i'll spot a worker, most commonly a callow, carrying it around outside the little cubby spot. But only for a short moment before they go back into it out of sight.
 

This is also where the queen is if she is in the nest. I think she spends about a 60/40 split between the nest cubby and out in the tube.

 

I got an image the other day of the seems extra big pupae. It had started to turn color last night, I figure it woke up late last night or sometime early today.

IMG_20230401_183719_HDR.jpg

It is the only pupae left, the rest are all in the larvae state.  I estimate 2-3 weeks to the next new workers after this one.

 

Look at the size of that head. It looks freaking huge.

Also this shot of it on the water tower, slight coloring to it now.

IMG_20230404_194730_HDR.jpg

 

I'm not seeing any antennae there, are you?

Meg just died, it's gonna be really weird if she shows right back up.

I mean how many same type MutANTs will one queen produce? What are the odds?

 

I'll be sure and update with fresh images after she wakes up and we see what's going on.

 

No good images and still not eclosed, but with more coloring coming along i see the antennae now. Thankfully nothing weird weird going on.


Edited by Full_Frontal_Yeti, April 5 2023 - 6:56 PM.

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#42 Offline Full_Frontal_Yeti - Posted April 10 2023 - 8:03 AM

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The colony continues to grow, though no new workers will be waking up for at least another 1.5-2 weeks, the brood pile seems to be getting bigger.

1a.jpg

The new callow's head can be seen in the back of the group on the water tower. And low on the left a worker can be seen against the glass digging down into their seed pile.They dig down and bring older seeds from the bottom up to the top of the pile.

 

Here is the egg clutch turned to a little ball of tiny larvae all stuck together still. Do they keep the eggs and larvae as one little ball until a larvae gets big enough to separate off on it's own?

1c.jpg

 

The last pupae that looked extra large seems generally normal. Maybe just a tad on the larger size with legs that might be just a little longer than normal?
She's still the light orange of a callow making her easy to spot. But i think she might stay easy to spot if she is a little taller than typical after she turns a deeper red like the rest of her sisters?

1b.jpg

 

 

 

A few notes of discovery:

They really  really love chia seeds i can't say this enough. They mostly won't touch other seeds i offer. Taking them from scattered in the outworld to the organized trash pile of the outworld right away.

 

I noticed that when i feed them an insect they spend a lot of effort and time to tear the legs off it, only to take them straight to the trash. I had been cutting them open, but now i also just quickly trim the legs off while i'm at it.

 

I found that they would drain out a water dispenser onto the ground if i left it in the middle/medium outworld, but not if i placed it up on the higher ledge, there they just go drink from it but don't mess around stuffing it with seeds or dirt that channel the water past the screen.

 

I also believe they see the large outworld as outside world/far enough away from the nest it is potentially more dangerous.

If I place fish flake in the largest outworld they will not touch it. They check it out but don't work it just ignore it. And it is right there to encounter as soon as they enter the large outworld.

From the large outworld they will only take seeds so far. They ignored a bug there for two days and a fish flake now for a whole week.

If i place the fish flake in the med outworld, they will tear it up and take it back to the nest usually that same day.

They have ignored the fish flake in the large outworld now for a whole week.

I think this indicates they do see the larger outwrold as a different space than the nest space. Which likely induces the tubes and maybe even some or all of the med outworld.

 



#43 Offline Full_Frontal_Yeti - Posted April 14 2023 - 9:29 AM

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Just a couple pics to show off her Majesty's tour of the kingdom.

 

As i have described she spends a fair amount of time in the connecting tube, but also comes out to basically just tour around the med outworld fairly regularly.

Sometimes she takes in a  little apple, but mostly she just does a few rounds on the lower floor and then goes back to the tube/nest.

 

She spent a long time out last night and i managed to get a couple pics. She won't normally stay still in one place long unless she's on the apple. Always moving around just not in an agitated hurry way.

IMG_20230413_161847_HDR - Copy.jpg

Anytime she spends enough time somewhere she winds up with her entourage showing up. So there are more ants in the med outworld image, maybe half of which showed up after a couple min of her being out here.

 

 

IMG_20230413_162719 - Copy.jpg

And the best close up i could get. She was doing circles around the otuworld and never stood still for long.

 

no image but i spotted the egg clutch looking particularly large yesterday. I imagine they are set to reach somewhere in the 60-70 range from the eggs, larvae and pupae in the queue at the moment.


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#44 Offline Ernteameise - Posted April 14 2023 - 10:32 AM

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Beautiful pictures.



#45 Offline AntsCali098 - Posted April 14 2023 - 10:34 AM

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Wow, that's a very active queen, coming out of the nest like that! I'm surprised the workers allow it lol.


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#46 Offline sL0wNsteady - Posted April 14 2023 - 12:26 PM

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#47 Offline Full_Frontal_Yeti - Posted April 14 2023 - 2:18 PM

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Beautiful pictures.

thanks

 

Wow, that's a very active queen, coming out of the nest like that! I'm surprised the workers allow it lol.

 

I have noticed that if the area she is in has been disturbed one of them might start trying to drag her back to nest. And occasionally a callow might get a little fussy with her just being out in the tube. But this is rare, the colony generally treats the med and mini outworlds as more nest space. I've even seen a worker bring a larvae out to each once when conditions were particularly humid and warm in them.
 

I think a lot of it has to do with the horizontal nature of the mini hearth side exit. She mostly seems to avoid moving vertically/upwards. She has never been out in the mini outworld, nor climbed on the cliff of the med. But she started going into the tube basically from day one when it was about 2x as long. With the med outworld becoming a consistent visit once the large outworld was added and connecting tube cut in half.


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#48 Offline Full_Frontal_Yeti - Posted April 24 2023 - 9:04 AM

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basic update:

 

Everything has been seeming well with the Ants. They  have apple all the time in the med outworld (fresh slice every 2-3 days). Once seeds in the large outwrold are gone/trash i wait a couple days then place a new pile somewhere else in it.
They get a bug or some fish flakes in the small outworld about once a week.

 

I have found that if a bug is too big it dries up before they can make use of it all, they just ignore it once it is dried out enough. But a couple drops of water on it and they will be back at it again. They used up most of a med sized roach over four days. I just had to put a couple drips on it for each of the following days after the first.

 

And on fish flakes they are a bit divided. Some ants will take fish flakes to the nest and it is fed to larvae right away. While some ants will drag the flakes directly to the large outworld trash pile.

I been using these flakes

s-l500.jpg

the larvae get a little red digestive track line to see when they been fed this stuff.

 

 

Here a few images from the last couple weeks in chronological order from oldest to most recent(yesterday).

 

The egg/larvae clutch can be seen there just a little left of middle. And on the right side w can see two ants both holding onto something. That turned out to be a bit of roach that was enthralling the ants for some reason.

1.jpg

 

 

here they have taken this roach bit to the med outworld where it gathered a small crowd with two really being into it and a third or fourth stopping in from time to time to see what all the fuss was about. Eventually one of them got hold of it and took it to the trash pile.

11.jpg

 

 

Here her Majesty has taken up a seat next to the glass and the egg pile is seen behind her on the water tower.

2.jpg

 

And again a shot of the egg/larvae clutch the next day. The callow worker there is the size most of the newer workers are. With one or two slightly smaller looking larvae and pupae among them still. But it kind of looks like whatever the actual average size of these ants is now what we're seeing come up. And all the smaller earlier workers look pretty runty next to them.

3.jpg

 

 

 

 

The egg/larvae clutch has gotten so big it's bigger than anyone trying to carry it around. I notice it drags as they move and sometimes a little egg or larvae will break off form the group and be left. And then a moment later a worker will notice, pick it up and start carrying it around. i don't have a shot of it but they officially have two clutches now as the one was a bit too big.

Feeling pretty sure we'll be moving into the fallen fortress nest before the end of the year.

And i'll add another larger outworld on to their setup whenever we get to that.

 

Oh and the flashlight use thing has been working well. As long as i bring the lamp to bear on them slowly from a left or right side(not aimed down from above them), and just keep it steady without a lot of wiggling/shake. They won't care and won't freak out at all about it. It's light at a top down angle and/or wiggle/motion of the light that tends to set them off.

 

Really enjoy them here. They sit just to my left when i'm at my computer where i spend most of my at home time. I can just turn and get enthralled by them, forgetting whatever it was i was in the middle of doing at my computer(mostly games) for 10-15 min stretches.
 


Edited by Full_Frontal_Yeti, April 24 2023 - 6:49 PM.

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#49 Offline Full_Frontal_Yeti - Posted May 4 2023 - 8:10 AM

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Steady as she goes for the colony. I have noticed the queen has not been coming out to the tube or med outworld now for over a week.
The nest is not crowded but much more full of brood than it had been, she has spent more of her time in the little side cubby out of sight.

And i get the sense that egg laying may have also increased with this as the egg and larvae balls being carried around seemed to be more commonly seen and larger as well just recently.

 

They have apple slice all the time. A bug once or twice a week depending on the size of it or maybe some fish flakes. And there is a seed type or two to forage from the big outworld. Though they mostly ignore anything but black chia seeds. Taking the time to let me know, these poppy seeds are trash, we just have to clean it up, you can stop littering out space with that junk please.
Like they will just ignore some dandelion, flax, and so on. But they actively move poppy seeds to the trash.
 

The large looking pupae I had mentioned is a larger ant to be sure and there are a couple of them now. Though i see there is a fair size range among the pupae coming up. So i guess they just have a fairly wide size range among a colony normally. No majors here they are not polymorphic, but some of the bigger ones really dwarf the smaller ones.

 

Here are the two big ones out on the apple. the younger one behind still light orange and the slightly older one middle front fully darkened.

IMG_20230429_112851_HDR.jpg

 

And a couple shots of the nest.

brood is spread out on the water tower and against the left side wall where the heat cable is. The ants have different opinions about who needs to be where. Sometimes i see two of them moving the same couple of pupae back and forth between the water tower and the heat. Occasionally one trying to move it before the other had let go yet and they ave a little tug of war over it.

IMG_20230502_194847_HDR.jpg

 

And here are two larvae/egg balls upfront on the water tower. And we can see they have decided to make a toilet on the glass mostly along the right side there getting blurry nasty. I have a replacement glass i need to add magnets to still. I'm pretty sure I can just slide it into place as the other one is slid off. Just kind of my lazy playing chicken with their growth move into a larger nest. We'll see if it gets dirty/obscured enough to motivate me before they got to move anyway.

IMG_20230502_195010.jpg


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#50 Offline Full_Frontal_Yeti - Posted May 4 2023 - 8:21 AM

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Oh and one last observation on them. They dumped about half of their nest's larder out to the trash/tube over the last week or so.

Like spring cleaning or something. i've seen them move a bit of "junk" into the tube for a few days before it was deemed real trash and taken all the way out.

Like that but way more aggressive when asking themselves if this seed brings them joy or not. Lot of seeds lost their joy apparently, but they were not taking in more at the same time to replenish.

The images above of course show they seem to have plenty still. But really that pile was deep before and made a whole sloped ramp to the side exit, with one of the smaller ants stretching their body to reach seeds at the bottom of the pile as they were digging down into it.

 

 

I think they may have gotten a bit too much moisture or something maybe. I discovered that if i fill the water tower up over a certain point it leaks out into the nest material, turning the lower parts of the nest the darker color when wet.
I'm guessing they basically staved off any rot that might have otherwise occurred if the seed pile did get wet on the bottom through that.


Edited by Full_Frontal_Yeti, May 4 2023 - 8:23 AM.

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#51 Offline Full_Frontal_Yeti - Posted May 11 2023 - 11:01 AM

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Tomorrow will be 16 weeks sense the 20+ colony's arrival.
They showed up with about 28-30 ants and about 20 brood items in total.
Between new workers and deaths they held in the 35-40 total for a while, but have clearly begun to grow again after their move.

For the last few weeks they have been adding about 2-3 new workers per week, but this is clearly on the increase and i see the rate averaging about 4-5 a week pretty soon.
I dig checking on them in the morning or after work and spotting a new callow that wasn't there before. It's a neat thing that new workers are visually obvious to see and gauge how new they are by their coloring.

 

Here is a nice close up of the colony toilet on the glass, and also a callow so new they still got a patch of full white on their gaster. As well as one of the recent to come along bigger ants front middle.
IMG_20230507_150657_HDR.jpg

 

And a note of interest here, they have decided that the tube is part of the nest. They had in the past "staged" trash in the tube when they had a "big clean up." And the stuff in the tube would be moved out to the trash pile over the course of the next several days. But a couple weeks ago they  moved a bunch of seeds out here and have been treating this as a larder. Taking some from it back into the nest for use and some out to the trash whenever they check the expiration dates or whatever. So coming up on three weeks i'm pretty sure the tube has been officially annexed into nest space now.
IMG_20230510_180316_HDR.jpg

 

You can see the orange painted board there. That's the THA Fallen Fortress base where the nest goes when it is attached to the outworld. Once they grow into that nest we'll be done with the tube attachment. As the nest is direct connect to the med outworld which itself is direct to the large. And as best i can i plan to not use tubes for attaching things unless i need to go vertical in my space use with a spiral tube(bad climbers).

technical details:
the bit of screen on the tube by the nest is to vent humidity that condensates in the tube otherwise
the brown cable is the heat cable
the black cable with orange bit is a temp probe in the nest(rubber band cudgel job makes it fit tight/securely in the nest port) connected to thermostat control for heat cable.

the other silver and black thing is also temperature to monitor ambient around the nest, connected to thermostat control for overhead ceramic heat in case it gets extra cold.
the black clips are because i live in earthquake country, last thing i need to have on top of the fallout of a serious earthquake, would be the ants are also lose in the house now.


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#52 Offline Ernteameise - Posted May 11 2023 - 11:56 AM

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Harvester ants are really funny with where they built their larder....

mine also stash the seed in some pretty funny places, but I assume that the spots they chose are convenient, and dry and appear to be "save" and easily to defend.

They also seem to have problems clearly differentiating between "inside" the nest and "outside" (or, at least, have a different view to what I as puny human consider inside and outside).



#53 Offline Full_Frontal_Yeti - Posted May 15 2023 - 1:00 PM

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Observations on feeding:

 

I think i got the cat of ants here in terms of being fussy eaters.

they have been quite picky on seeds.
of the following
Kentucky blue grass, dandelion, black chia, poppy, flax (gold and brown), fennel, cardamon, hemp, and sesame seed.

they gladly took in the first two, and somewhat still do. But of all the rest the only one they keep and still take is the black chia.

Everything else was either taken in but then removed to the trash within a couple days.

Just totally ignored. Or in the case of the poppy seeds, they tend to move it from where it is found directly to the trash. Hard no on those.

 

 

On proteins:

they turned both mealworms and superworms into trash immediately, do not pass go do not collect protein.
they do take in roaches and crickets gladly

But on real meat they are also oddly fussy.

At first they were interested in raw chicken liver and heart. But only licking on it while it was still fresh and wet. They only took a little bit of liver, and none of the heart.
Then i tried a bit of cooked chicken heart. Just a bit quickly boiled and this they got after heavily. It had many ants out on it for hours.
Then i noticed they were actually taking it directly out to the trash and not to the larvae in the nest.

 

When i  moved it out to the large outworld they just ignored it. Apparently the mini outworld on top of the nest is more nest space for them and they really didn't want that meat garbage in it.

 

 

I had noticed a few ant keepers that regularly fed meat/egg/liver. So i thought to try it. After all .13 cents of chicken liver was a lot of food for them, and less effort to deal in than insects.
But there they are, bit fussy it seems. Looks like i will just stick to bugs n seeds for them.


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#54 Offline Ernteameise - Posted May 16 2023 - 1:28 AM

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Observations on feeding:
 
I think i got the cat of ants here in terms of being fussy eaters.
they have been quite picky on seeds.
of the following
Kentucky blue grass, dandelion, black chia, poppy, flax (gold and brown), fennel, cardamon, hemp, and sesame seed.
they gladly took in the first two, and somewhat still do. But of all the rest the only one they keep and still take is the black chia.
Everything else was either taken in but then removed to the trash within a couple days.
Just totally ignored. Or in the case of the poppy seeds, they tend to move it from where it is found directly to the trash. Hard no on those.
 
 
On proteins:
they turned both mealworms and superworms into trash immediately, do not pass go do not collect protein.
they do take in roaches and crickets gladly
But on real meat they are also oddly fussy.

At first they were interested in raw chicken liver and heart. But only licking on it while it was still fresh and wet. They only took a little bit of liver, and none of the heart.
Then i tried a bit of cooked chicken heart. Just a bit quickly boiled and this they got after heavily. It had many ants out on it for hours.
Then i noticed they were actually taking it directly out to the trash and not to the larvae in the nest.
 
When i  moved it out to the large outworld they just ignored it. Apparently the mini outworld on top of the nest is more nest space for them and they really didn't want that meat garbage in it.
 
 
I had noticed a few ant keepers that regularly fed meat/egg/liver. So i thought to try it. After all .13 cents of chicken liver was a lot of food for them, and less effort to deal in than insects.
But there they are, bit fussy it seems. Looks like i will just stick to bugs n seeds for them.


With my Messors, I made the observation that they crave variety.
They can get fussy if presented with the same thing every time.
So I offer a very wide variety of seeds, and I vary the protein- meat, bones, egg, liver....
If I feed one thing too often in a row, they lose interest.

#55 Offline Full_Frontal_Yeti - Posted June 8 2023 - 11:22 AM

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Well i knew this would happen eventually but it was still kind of hard for me none the less even though i knew this would just be par for the course to ant keeping.
I got some feelings about other life and how we treat it,  and this hobby brings me into contact with this a bit more than i used to be. So it wasn't easy to soak that i killed several (4 or 5) ants in the process of swapping out the nest glass for a clean one.

I almost did it right, but of course a thing you've only imagined but never done is unlikely to go right on the first try. And i would up with a few that got crushed. And now like so many of you, i have the terrible evidence of my failure on display to see pressed between the glass and nest. I seen yalls images, it was one of the things i had to cringe against knowing going into this.
Took me a few days to get over it cause this is just who i am.
 

And of course within literally a few hours they had already mussed up the glass to be right back to as dirty as it had been. Making the whole effort a pointless one, which is part of what gets to me. Where i'm just all welcome to the ant prison i'll be your warden, you are here for my entertainment and some of you may die for it.

But anyway, they got over it, i got over it, we've moved on.
Their long term fate with me is to reach a max size and be culled to keep it there cause i live in a tiny ween place. There's nothing else for it once i can't expand their nest or outworlds anymore.

 

Anyway this was hard to report, but is what there is to show so any other noobs considering it can know what to expect. You just will wind up going oppsie sometimes, and what you are trying to care for suffers for it. You just gonna have to be ready to soak some of that if you take up the hobby.

 

Moving on:

The colony seems to be doing quite well despite my bumbling.
I estimate they are averaging about 2 new workers a day right now.
There is a white spots fresh callow to be seen anytime i look in on them.

View of the nest, far right you can see the top of an egg pile on the water tower. They keep the eggs and young larvae on the water tower on the right. Later stage larvae and pupae on the left next to the heat source.

IMG_20230528_145049_HDR.jpg

 

Enjoying some organic blueberry here. the adults ate on it, but they also actually dug into the middle of each half and excavated most of the seeds back to the nest. I thought that was really cool to wittiness. And reminded me that the right fruits and berries can provide both the sugars for the adults and seeds for the brood.
IMG_20230526_144947_HDR.jpg

And this is the med outworld (fallen fortress without nest) which has become the primary toilet for the ants that leave the nest proper. You can see the black on kind of everything, though the rock is clean as i had just cleaned it the previous day. It's the real toilet center for them. So i no longer think of it as "med outworld, "  now it's Poop Rock.

IMG_20230601_161043_HDR.jpg

 

And with the growth explosion going on i figure they move into the fallen fortress nest in 2-3 months. So I got the ball rolling with Tar Heel Ants for the next outworld to go along with that.



Really got to say, give your ants as much outworld as you can. Once i had enough total space their behavior noticeably changed.

Nest, small outworld, tube, and med outworld: from the ant's POV I'm confident that is all nest to them. The strongest evidence of this is i can see them move brood into any of those places when the humidity and temperature conditions are right.

Meanwhile the large outworld, almost no poop, just a tiny bit right near the entrance/exit. Very few ants come out here, and once in a while a younger ant will stumble "outside" and within about 1" or less of entering the large outworld they freak out and run back into the med outworld in a panic.

If i put a bug in the large outworld they will most likely ignore it, unless it is really close to the entrance/exit, like within 1" or less. More or less any food stuffs they can't just pick up and walk off with, they won't spend time futzing with out here in the big outworld. But if i move it either into the med or small outworld, they will get after in force.

So it just really looks like from the ant POV, large outworld = outside, as they behave radically different relative to it than any other space in the formicarium.
Highly recommend giving your ants a substantially higher % of outworld to nest space if you can.


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#56 Offline ANTdrew - Posted June 8 2023 - 12:41 PM

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I think Pogonomyrmex would be best in an horizontal nest with glass they couldn’t climb on to mess up. Sorry you lost some workers, though. The colony will replace them in no time.
"The ants are a people not strong, yet they prepare their meat in the summer." Prov. 30:25
Keep ordinary ants in extraordinary ways.

#57 Offline Ernteameise - Posted June 8 2023 - 1:08 PM

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Well, to be honest....

in nature, there are dozens of predators around to hunt down ants.

My outside balcony ant colony, a jumping spider has pretty much learned by now where the feeding station is where I feed the ants, and I can watch the spider patrolling there. I have not seen her killing an ant, but I can very well see her watching the ants with her huge eyes and the ants know the spider is there and are wary.

I have not removed the spider.

Is this cruel? Would it be cruel to remove the spider?

 

I am aware that with ant keeping, sometimes it is not possible to avoid deaths. I have watched Youtube videos of some guys with huge colonies. They love their ants. But they admit, due to the size of the colony, when they do their cleaning, there are always a few ants which sadly are sucked up or killed during cleaning. In a colony of several thousand, that does not make a difference.

There is also the heartbreaking video of one antkeeper who had his huge colony escape and he had to collect thousands of ants which were swarming his ant room, and he cried for every ant he had to accidently kill.

That was painful to watch.

 

I know it is sad, but that sometimes is how it is.

Look at other animal keeping hobbies.

I also keep cherry shrimp and different colour ramshorn snails, and if you want to keep a strong strain of a good colour, you have to do selective breeding and cull the specimens that lose colour or revert to the wild type. Same when you breed betta fish- one clutch can have 100 baby fish, but you want to breed the strongest and most vital ones and the ones with the best genetics, and if you have malformed fish or fish that are not "to type" then you need to cull them. It is physically completely impossible to have thousands of fish tanks in your flat, just to keep each and every one of the fish (and betta fish will fight, so you have to have a tank for each individual). In Thai breeding stations, they actually keep all the individual fish in separate small glass bottles!

 

Is this cruelty to animals?

I am a German vet, and I had to do a 3 month (!!) practical in the slaughterhouse. I grew up on a farm as a kid. I knew about slaughtering since I could walk. But seeing the industrial scale in the slaughterhouse.... that was VERY hard to bear. And I still eat meat! (I do however make an effort to eat less and buy organic when I can)

 

Where I am going with this?

I just wanted to show the ant keeping hobby and possible deaths in relation. Sometimes it is unavoidable. And the world out there, be it nature or human behaviour, is not as considerate and ants are on the menu for many other animals.

Do not beat yourself up too much.

 

Otherwise....

I really like the look of this Tarheel Ant nest.

Looking at it, I am very happy I took the plunge and going to try out one of the nests with my small Messor colony.

I am pretty sure these Messors will also soil the glass, and I might also have to clean it eventually.

Will then have to figure out how to go about it....


Edited by Ernteameise, June 8 2023 - 1:09 PM.


#58 Offline Full_Frontal_Yeti - Posted June 8 2023 - 3:04 PM

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I think Pogonomyrmex would be best in an horizontal nest with glass they couldn’t climb on to mess up. Sorry you lost some workers, though. The colony will replace them in no time.

i plan to have them in such a nest next, the fallen fortress. This was just a 20+ colony originally and that would'a been too much for them, but i do got it here ready for em.
And yeah they were replaced in just a couple days as they been averaging about +2 a day for a few weeks now.

Still it was something i been dreading as i knew it was basically an inevitability of the hobby i'd have to face eventually.



#59 Offline Full_Frontal_Yeti - Posted June 8 2023 - 3:18 PM

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Will then have to figure out how to go about it....

 

 

get a 2nd glass ready upfront.

hold the glass up in front of the current one. the current magnets can be used to correctly position the magnets on the replacement glass. Just put it on the glass right on top of the old glass magnets. You can let the magnets hold the glass on top of the other glass, and one at a time take a magnet off, put the sticky dot on it,  and put it back on the glass where it came off. No need to push it down hard the magnet pull takes care of that.

Now if you do not already know, check to see if there is a "polarity key" orientation you have to use. If the magnets were not all facing the same direction, they will still seal, but need to have a specific orientation to work. Though even when magnetically facing the same way, the positioning is often asymmetrically "keyed" anyway. But still important to know as polarity key mismatch will push open a gap. During the slide a polarity key will also need to be known when it will push out on the glass it passes over  rather than stick to it.
I did not have to deal with that so can't say what it was like or give any xp tips.

 

Once done you have a replacement glass with the magnets in the right position for the nest it's going to go on.

Set the nest on a table edge so the front of the nest is just over the edge of the table.
Line the replacement glass bottom edge wiht the top edge of the on nest glass.

 

See how this works? Slide the replacement glass down into place pushing the old glass off as you go.
 

Here is the challenge to cope wiht that i didn't get right on the first try, is that you press hard at first to fight the magnet pull to move the current glass off.
But as the magnets on the replacement glass get close to the mount magnets, DO NOT LOOSE YOUR GRIP. The replacement glass got sucked down out of my grip, causing it to slide up under the old glass instead of stay even with it.
That created a gap and ants swarmed into.

 

 

On the 2nd go i had the feel for it, i knew to go a faster rather than slower and  keep a tighter grip on the new glass for when the magnets are going to start pulling on it.
But it did work like a charm, old glass down and out of the way as new glass takes its place. No gaps, no escapes, no crushing. This is why it's over the edge of the table so the old glass can move all the way off in a downward motion.

 

 

You could try the same thing from side to side, instead of top to bottom. But that's many more inches to have to slide it and not fook up. So i do recommend the top to bottom approach of sliding one glass into place from the top  while it is pushing the old one out of the way downward.


Edited by Full_Frontal_Yeti, June 19 2023 - 11:17 AM.

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#60 Offline Ernteameise - Posted June 8 2023 - 11:43 PM

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This is really good advice for when I have to clean my own Tarheel nest.

Thank you!







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