1. Hello everyone (catching spree)
This is my first attempt at raising a colony of ants so any advise is appreciated. I am from Croatia where nuptial flights of tetramorium sp. was in the middle of jun so I get a couple of them, but only three queens seems to be fertilised. (Others were caught too early...) Since then, I've been keeping notes about their progress in my notebook and camera. I will try to get as many pictures every update so less text will be needed.
Of course, english is not my native language, but I think you will understand most of the text.
- 16.06.'16 (midnight)
I've noticed ants bringing all male and female ants with wings up to surface. I was too impatient so I instantly took four of them (not smart idea) on four different spots. I marked them as |1|, |2|, |3| and |4|. (Very creative, I know...) After sending pictures to this forum, someone commented they are most likely "Tetramorium Caespitum" They were put in a test tube setup like in Ants-Canada's youtube video, aaand that's where story about those four queens ends... (They layed some eggs, but there wasn't any progress after that.)
*picture I've sent to forum to get queen's ID
- 17.06.'16 (around 17 a.m.)
Was taking a walk near places I saw nuptial flight last night and I cought fifth queen. The |5|. Put her in setup and after two days she started laying eggs!
(I was so excited,)
*|5| with her first egg/s
After that, things started to happend quickly... And, what suprised me the most, even after a whole week after nuptial flight, I was able to find a lot of them walking on a pavement.
- 22.06.'16.- six days after n.f. (3 p.m.)
Caught |6| and |7|. My younger brother almost stepped on |6| so i yelled... Nice guy. |7| managed to escape (yes, I underestimated her.)
- 09.07.'16.- twenty three d.a.n.f. Caught |8|.
So at that point I had three healthy and producing queens: |5|, |6| and |8|.
2. FIRST WORKERS
I just came home from a vacation and was going to check up the queens and then...
* |5| has her first couple of workers.
What funny is that at this moment I was like:" Ooo, I have yellow ants, nice!" (for n00bs like me: they become black as their exoskeleton hardens.)
So, as first workes had arrived, I gave them small drop of honey and continue feeding them after that.
*|5| Test tube was set on my diary where I am collecting notes about my ant colonies.
The number of workers only grew after that. |5| is the "oldest one" and she had the most workers, but |6| catch up on her [31.07.'16] and took a lead althought she was captured six days afer her. I moved |5| in new test tube once when she had only eggs, and once she had eight workers with brood, same with |6|. |8| is in the same test tube whole time, she has a lot of brood but no workers. I once gave her a small drop of honey. (I avoid to give them food until first workers arive but she looked very exhausted for few days so I decide to help her up.
That all happend between "the hunt" and today. I have been writing down every detail in my notebook (one more worker, two more, gave food, they ate all, queen loves honey and stuff like that), but I think u guys don't wanna read all that so I won't post all of that. Or comment if you do.
ok, we are finally in the present!
4. PRESENT 15/08/'16.
Here is what colonies look like right now!
- |5| with eight workers
- |6| with nineteen workers and food left over
...and last but not least...
- |8| with zero workers, but alot of brood, just finifhing her honey meal
Colonies are doing fine and I am glad that this forum exists. I wonder how many will read it down all until the end. ;P
that's is from me for now... Wish me luck.