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#1 Offline Full_Frontal_Yeti - Posted January 27 2023 - 4:07 PM

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I've had a colony of Pogonomyrmex Occidentalis now sense last Friday. These are my first ants.
They seemed to move in easy and i spotted a growing egg clutch real shortly.

But just in the last couple days the queen has been leaving the nest in a tizzy. She seems to get bothered by something, starts moving around then nest quickly like it was being disturbed while the rest of the ants are just going about normal ant business with no care.

And she runs out into the tube leading to the outworld, where once about 1/2 way down the 18" run she just hangs out. She goes as far as the outworld exit but never out in it.

 

I had wondered if she was not liking the amount of light that is getting in the nest, though none of the other workers seem to care. but when she runs out into the tube she's in full light under the setup's "day time"  overhead lighting/heat source. And she just hangs in the tube under that like she's happier out there than in the nest.

 

So far the only specific thing i've done is to make a small darkened tube chamber on the side of the mini hearth that she might make her chamber if it is the light/nest commotion that is bothering her.

but no real idea if this is maybe what's up or if a queen leaving the nest like this might indicate other issues to look to?

That's her in the background in the tube, i attached the chamber for her while she was out of the nest to minimize vibration disturbing her.

post-7513-0-00500900-1674862869.jpg

 

 

Any advice or words about this being kinda normal to calm me would be much appreciated.

Thanks,

FFY


Edited by Full_Frontal_Yeti, January 27 2023 - 4:10 PM.


#2 Offline ANTdrew - Posted January 27 2023 - 5:32 PM

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With these kinds of THA nests, I put something over the glass to block light. Could be as simple as a towel or a piece of cardboard. A Pogonomyrmex queen would honestly never see light again once she digs her founding chamber.

In the end of the day, you’re running up against what I call Myrmy’s Law: all things being equal, ants will always do the opposite of what you want or expect them to do. Spend $120 on a perfect, climate controlled formicarium, but the queen chooses to hang out in a vinyl tube? That’s Myrmy’s Law for you right there.

Edited by ANTdrew, January 27 2023 - 5:32 PM.

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Keep ordinary ants in extraordinary ways.

#3 Offline T.C. - Posted January 27 2023 - 9:24 PM

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Your exit tube really doesn't need to be that long and probably shouldn't be. Also what is the nest sitting on, because it looks like plastic. I have mine sitting on foam to absorb the vibrations.


" Whatever You Are, Be a Good One "


#4 Offline Full_Frontal_Yeti - Posted January 28 2023 - 8:24 AM

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With these kinds of THA nests, I put something over the glass to block light. Could be as simple as a towel or a piece of cardboard. A Pogonomyrmex queen would honestly never see light again once she digs her founding chamber.

In the end of the day, you’re running up against what I call Myrmy’s Law: all things being equal, ants will always do the opposite of what you want or expect them to do. Spend $120 on a perfect, climate controlled formicarium, but the queen chooses to hang out in a vinyl tube? That’s Myrmy’s Law for you right there.

I commonly do have a card blocking light to the nest when i'm not around. I tend to remove it when i'm here and the room is  darker. The normal computer use lighting for me leaves the nest in deep shadow, and it's just when my honey's work light is on that the nest gets any light cast in it.
She's not been to the tube now for some time, and it was mostly vexing me becasue she had been seemingly settled in for all the days after her move in she had not once come out. And then suddenly she was coming out with some frequency. Which is what was making me consider that something in the conditions for her may have changed. but the only change i could notice was having about doubled the number of ants in there sense they arrived. I'm at around 49-53 or so now.

 

In the end no one made use of the dark chamber, the queen was still found in her 50% time spot hanging from the ceiling(she's there or on the water tower mostly) and only one ant came out of it after detaching. So not bothering with that anymore.
Especially after hearing that yes they do just do stuff you were not anticipating like this sometimes.

 

 

Your exit tube really doesn't need to be that long and probably shouldn't be. Also what is the nest sitting on, because it looks like plastic. I have mine sitting on foam to absorb the vibrations.

I could arrange the nest/outworld such that a much shorter run could be had. I have not had any obvious issues from it so far though and find the setup quite pleasing to observe. The one thing i spotted early on during testing set up was a little bit of condensation right near the nest. A small bit of screened vent took care of that.

What would be some of the issues such a tube run has that you would avoid it for? Currently they seem to mostly treat it as the outdoors, only the queen has ever spent anytime just hanging out in it, everyone else is just passing throgh.

 

 

The mini is sitting on top of four little rubber feet. It gives me a few things, vibration absorption, lifting the nest up a bit so i can make use of underneath lighting sometimes for pictures, and cutting a shallow groove in the left ones i can run the heat cable under the nest while it stays in direct contact with the nest but does not tilt it to be under it.


Edited by Full_Frontal_Yeti, January 28 2023 - 8:25 AM.


#5 Offline T.C. - Posted January 29 2023 - 6:32 PM

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Best to not have a small colony's trek be too long, since they could potentially get lost. Its unlikely with a long tube since it's straight and narrow but I'd avoid it.

" Whatever You Are, Be a Good One "





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