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Pseudoneoponera sublaevis


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#1 Offline CrazyLegs - Posted February 20 2017 - 6:34 PM

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Lifting a log deep inside a eucalypt forest in South East Queensland revealed a chamber containing a small squad of very cool ants and four distinctive orange/brown pupae. Pseudoneoponera sublaevis are a large heavily armored ant from Australia with a unique defense against smaller ant attackers. They can produce a foam from their venom gland that will stop intruders in their tracks. They also possess a very painful sting which is mainly used for subduing prey. These girls are big and colonies have never been known to exceed 20 workers. The queen caste has almost completely disappeared from this genus and there is a good chance that one of these girls is a fertile gamergate. I will watch this trio carefully and am excited to report my findings on this super cool genus of ants. If any experts find that I have identified the species incorrectly please let me know.

Pseudoneoponera sublaevis
I hope this colony grows as I am keen to come up with a specialized formicarium for these girls.
 
For now they will be known as "The Magnificent 7" :)
 
They can't climb glass or acrylic.

Edited by CrazyLegs, February 20 2017 - 7:04 PM.

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#2 Offline Alabama Anter - Posted February 20 2017 - 6:58 PM

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HOLY
‚ÄčFREAKING
AUSSIE
‚ÄčANTS

 

I need to go to Australia... :facepalm:  :*( 


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Keeper of...

(2) Parakeets
(2) Peppered Corydoras
(4) Neon Tetras
(1) Hermit Crab
(100-300) Mealworms
(1) Tetramorium sp. E
(1) Dormymyrmex bicolor
(1) Dormymyrmex insanus
(1) Solenopsis invicta
(1) Formica fusca
(1) Lasius neoniger
(1) Crematogaster cerasi
(1) Myrmecocystus testacus

#3 Offline CrazyLegs - Posted February 20 2017 - 7:07 PM

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This was an extremely lucky find. I've never seen these ants in the flesh before and I was blown away by how solid they are. I swept the whole colony into a jar and they immediately began spraying foam all over the place even onto each other! They seem unaffected by their own defense though which was a relief.


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#4 Offline antgenius123 - Posted February 20 2017 - 7:40 PM

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Wow nice find!


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Currently own:
(1x) Camponotus Sp.
(1x) Pheidole aurivillii (?)
(1x) Monomorium Sp. (?)

Other

#5 Offline Leo - Posted February 20 2017 - 7:41 PM

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i found some foam-sprayin ants once, did not work out tho  :(


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#6 Offline Leo - Posted February 20 2017 - 7:48 PM

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i accidentally placed a harpenthagos worker with that queen and the harpenthagos stung the queen, while the queen gassed the worker. both died  :*(


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#7 Offline Martialis - Posted February 20 2017 - 8:28 PM

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i accidentally placed a harpenthagos worker with that queen and the harpenthagos stung the queen, while the queen gassed the worker. both died  :*(

 

I'm guessing Myrmicines and Ponerines don't like each other that much.


Spoiler

#8 Offline Leo - Posted February 20 2017 - 9:19 PM

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:lol:



#9 Offline CrazyLegs - Posted February 20 2017 - 9:41 PM

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I did a little more research on these ants and found that the average colony has about 9 workers. The nests supposedly all travel horizontally for a short distance before turning down and remain shallow with only a few chambers, one being reserved for trash. The location I found them was quite sandy so I thought I could easily dig down the half meter depth limit of the nest. I decided to go back this time with a trusty field shovel and make sure I didn't miss anything. I had a small dig around the first time I was there with a small trowel but didn't see any distinct tunnel that lead me in the right direction. This time when I arrived it became a game of follow the attacking Phedioles, which had taken advantage of my initial disturbance and launched an attack on the weakened nest. Despite being many Phediole including a large contingent of super majors it seemed the foam was keeping them at bay. It was the perfect indicator on which direction to dig. I'm pretty sure I ended up with the whole colony after bottling an extra 8 Pseudoneoponera. Unfortunately the 9th was severed in half by my spade. Hopefully she wasn't an egg layer. I now have a total of 11 of these girls plus the 4 pupae. I will allow them some time in the dark to calm down and clean themselves up, then I will get a pic of the new additions. Happy days.  :)


Edited by CrazyLegs, February 20 2017 - 9:42 PM.

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#10 Offline Leo - Posted February 20 2017 - 10:00 PM

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pics



#11 Offline CrazyLegs - Posted February 20 2017 - 10:19 PM

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pics

Hahaha, patience Leo, It's one of the most important virtues of ant keeping.

The ants are currently licking the dust off each other and recovering from a long hardship filled day.

When they are clean and calm I'll take a few snaps for you. :)


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#12 Offline Leo - Posted February 20 2017 - 10:23 PM

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:blush: thanks



#13 Offline CrazyLegs - Posted February 21 2017 - 2:42 AM

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Counting ants is hard. :) There's actually 12 in there. I have them attached to a small outworld, I just corked the 150mm tube for the picture taking.

12 Pseudoneoponera

I've decided to call this colony "The Matrix"

Big Pseudies 1
Big Pseudies 2
Here's some extras just for you Leo.
Big Pseudies 3
Under the right light they give off a purplish hue.
Big Pseudies 4

 

 


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#14 Offline Leo - Posted February 21 2017 - 3:08 AM

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THANKS THANKS THANKs  :yahoo:



#15 Offline Leo - Posted February 21 2017 - 3:10 AM

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thanks  :yahoo:



#16 Offline CrazyLegs - Posted February 25 2017 - 3:55 AM

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So you could get a good idea of just how these big armored ants get things done, here is a video of a scout wrestling down a meal worm.

 

 

These ants are the complete opposite of my Myrmecia brevinoda when it comes to diet, refusing all sweet liquids.

This team of 12 can strip an entire meal worm to nothing in 24 hours though.


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#17 Offline Antking117 - Posted February 25 2017 - 5:18 AM

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These ants are sweet looking, and the fact that they are huge and armoured? well all they need is a purpose and they just may rule the world.


Edited by antking117, February 25 2017 - 5:19 AM.

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#18 Offline CrazyLegs - Posted February 25 2017 - 12:23 PM

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I'm loving these ants antking117, they have the smallest colonies in the ant world. They seem quite intelligent and I love the way they are always cleaning their thick antenna. They move around fairly slowly with confidence but can put on a burst of speed if required. There are no queens but a strict social hierarchy is established with the toughest ant taking the lead role. As soon as I have time I will be coming up with another hebel formicarium style especially for these girls.


Edited by CrazyLegs, February 25 2017 - 12:33 PM.

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#19 Offline Martialis - Posted February 25 2017 - 12:46 PM

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All I can think in the video after 3:00 is, "Does she know it's dead yet?"


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Spoiler

#20 Offline CrazyLegs - Posted February 25 2017 - 1:22 PM

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I wanted to film her carrying it into the tube but she stopped and just stared at it for 2 minutes. Once it stopped wriggling she took it away. :) 


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