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Dspdrew's Myrmecocystus cf. placodops Journal [196] (Updated 12-17-2021)

dspdrew journal myrmecocystus placodops

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#21 Offline dspdrew - Posted March 29 2015 - 11:28 PM

dspdrew
  • LocationSanta Ana, CA
Update 3-29-2015
 
Really nothing has changed with these queens. They still lay a few eggs every once and a while, and then either eat them or kill them.
 
I decided to try something different with one of them and put it in one of my little ant farm boxes. After about one day, it dig a nest. Now to wait and see what happens. I might do this for another one too.
 
med_gallery_2_242_823105.jpg

#22 Offline Crystals - Posted March 30 2015 - 6:22 AM

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It dug quite a ways.  No wonder you have to catch them so soon after they fly.


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#23 Offline dspdrew - Posted March 30 2015 - 6:51 PM

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Update 3-30-2015
 
The dead-beat queen I put in the ant farm box has suddenly laid a few eggs.


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#24 Offline Miles - Posted March 30 2015 - 7:02 PM

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Update 3-30-2015
 
The dead-beat queen I put in the ant farm box has suddenly laid a few eggs.

I'm thinking of doing this with a Pogonomyrmex queen.


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#25 Offline Foogoo - Posted March 30 2015 - 8:14 PM

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I sounds like the test tube was just not where it wanted to be. I wonder if it would have been equally angry at life in something like a THA nest, where it feels more natural but she still won't be able to dig.


Camponotus vicinus, Crematogaster 1, Crematogaster 2, Formica francoeuri, *, *, Myrmecocystus testaceus, Novomessor cockerelli, Pheidole hyatti, Pogonomyrmex californicus, Pogonomyrmex rugosus, Solenopsis invicta


#26 Offline Miles - Posted March 30 2015 - 8:17 PM

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I sounds like the test tube was just not where it wanted to be. I wonder if it would have been equally angry at life in something like a THA nest, where it feels more natural but she still won't be able to dig.

I'd expect her to be much more comfortable in a THA nest than on glass and cotton.


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#27 Offline antmaniac - Posted March 30 2015 - 8:29 PM

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The head of this species is quite colourful. I find that sometimes the larvae don't move due to too bloated with food. 



#28 Offline dspdrew - Posted March 31 2015 - 10:09 AM

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  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Yeah, I think any more natural-like precarved formicarium would probably work better for them. Because of the way I design my stuff, these ant farm boxes of dirt are probably easier to make, and more worth my time as a temporary solution. I also think there's a chance they are even more happy being in actual dirt. Obviously for honeypots specifically, the width of the space between the panels might not make them as happy as something carved out with deeper chambers for repletes.



#29 Offline dspdrew - Posted April 8 2015 - 8:54 PM

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  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Update 4-8-2015
 
I ended up putting two more of these queens in the ant farm boxes, but one just died, so I used that box for another one of my Myrmecocystus yuma queens.



#30 Offline dspdrew - Posted April 30 2015 - 7:30 AM

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  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Update 4-30-2015
 
These old deadbeat queens keep dying. There's now only one left, and she is now in one of the ant farm boxes. I really hope I find more of these this season.



#31 Offline dspdrew - Posted May 4 2015 - 7:15 PM

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  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Update 5-4-2015
 
The last queen died. I guess duds are duds, no matter what setup you put them in.



#32 Offline dspdrew - Posted July 31 2015 - 11:15 AM

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  • LocationSanta Ana, CA
7-31-2015
 
1. Location of collection:  Adelanto, California.
2. Date of collection: 7-21-2015.
3. Habitat of collection:  Joshua tree/High Desert.
4. Length (from head to gaster):  13mm
5. Color, hue, pattern and texture:  Red head; dark grey thorax and gaster.
 
I found three of these Myrmecocystus cf. mendax queens 7-21-2015, in Adelanto, California, and another in Johnson Valley. I dug all of them up from their founding chambers. The one from Johnson Valley looks slightly different, and might not be M. mendax, so once I find out for sure, I'll move her to another journal if I have to.
 
med_gallery_2_467_567511.jpg
 
med_gallery_2_467_69839.jpg
 
 
I put the three from Adelanto in some of my small dirt boxes, and the one from Johnson Valley I'll be putting in a small shallow container with Hydrostone in the bottom and dirt on top.
 
These all started laying eggs within a day or two.
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#33 Offline Foogoo - Posted July 31 2015 - 12:25 PM

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How do you differentiate M. mendax from M. placodops?


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Camponotus vicinus, Crematogaster 1, Crematogaster 2, Formica francoeuri, *, *, Myrmecocystus testaceus, Novomessor cockerelli, Pheidole hyatti, Pogonomyrmex californicus, Pogonomyrmex rugosus, Solenopsis invicta


#34 Offline dspdrew - Posted July 31 2015 - 1:46 PM

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  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

M. mendax - Longest occipital hairs 0.5-1.0 x MOD, usually in excess of 0.7; longest mesoscutal hairs at least 0.5 x MOD, usually more; longest scutellar hairs at least 0.9 x MOD; scutal punctation variable; HW less than 2.3 mm

 

M. placodops - Longest occipital and scutal hairs 0.6, or less, x MOD; longest scutellar hairs 0.8, or less, x MOD; scutum with large anteromedian impunctate area; HW 2.3 mm

 

Problem is nobody knows exactly what MOD is. Some say maximum ocular diameter, some say minimum ocular diameter.


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#35 Offline kellakk - Posted July 31 2015 - 2:39 PM

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Drew, since Roy Snelling's paper that provides the key to Myrmecocystus clearly defines MOD as minimum ocular diameter, I'm pretty sure that's what you should go with. 


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Current Species:
Pogonomyrmex montanus

 

Reticulitermes hesperus


#36 Offline dspdrew - Posted July 31 2015 - 5:38 PM

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  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Oh okay. If it's the paper with the key then I guess I'd go with that.



#37 Offline gcsnelling - Posted August 1 2015 - 11:00 AM

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Roys key is definitely the best one currently available.



#38 Offline dspdrew - Posted August 5 2015 - 8:56 AM

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  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Update 8-5-2015

 

I put the one from Johnson Valley into a dirt box yesterday. I placed all of her brood on the side of the container, so we'll see if she ends up losing it while she digs her nest.



#39 Offline LC3 - Posted August 5 2015 - 9:58 AM

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Drew's logo should be a box of dirt. :P



#40 Offline dspdrew - Posted August 5 2015 - 11:03 AM

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  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Bubblegum sunglasses guy would be better. B)


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