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Pheidole Californica Producing alates late

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#1 Offline gs5248 - Posted August 21 2023 - 7:03 PM


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My Pheidole Californica colony has been producing alates this year. I am seeing new callow alates still emerging, so clearly my colony hasn't ended production of alates quite yet. Why are they producing alates so late in the season, and when do their flights happen?

Edited by gs5248, August 21 2023 - 7:05 PM.

#2 Offline ANTdrew - Posted August 22 2023 - 2:06 AM


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My Pheidole bicarinata also produce their alates later than wild populations for some reason I do not understand. Something about captive conditions must throw off their timing.
"The ants are a people not strong, yet they prepare their meat in the summer." Prov. 30:25
Keep ordinary ants in extraordinary ways.

#3 Offline PurdueEntomology - Posted August 23 2023 - 1:20 AM


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Yes, one must assume that age and cuticular hydrocarbon profile of queen, diet, ambient air and soil temperatures, overwintering conditions, diurnal lengths must be physiological and environmental factors contributing to alate production and synchronized nuptial flights of disparate colonies over a geographical area.  Housed containerized conditions cannot simulate these broader environmental conditions.  Alate production itself may be associated with colony size and age, queen status (age/physiology) and feeding conditions since much energy must be devoted to production of larger alate larvae. One can therefore have alate production but not in synch with local colonies.

Edited by PurdueEntomology, August 23 2023 - 10:31 PM.

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