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Dermy's Myrmica Colony July 31st 2018

dermy myrmica ant colony

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#1 Offline dermy - Posted August 2 2018 - 10:54 PM

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July 31-2018- I found a Massive Myrmica Colony that will be sprayed shortly. I wanted to at least try and save it. I mean at the end of the day it's a lose lose anyway. Even if it does die in my care It would at least be at a greater chance of survival than out in the yard.
Anyway here's a video showing how large the wild colony is, I'm still collecting whatever I can before they get fumigated:

 

There is at least 25 queens in this colony, I'm still collecting them and will probably get even more than that. Myrmica colonies in the area I collected this one commonly have anywhere from 10 queens to upwards of 70+ queens in a colony.

Here they are in their current setup, I've only ever had success with Single Container Formicarium and Foraging area in one. I can't do connections because I need to constantly move this container around with me. It goes where I go.



[No I'm not gonna spam all the time-lapses I do of this thing, just the important ones where stuff actually happens haha]

I'll try and make sure the colony doesn't get killed this time, I give them everything they could ever want and then some [Surplus of insects, various sugars and of course lots of water]

After doing my testing [not really a test more of neglect than anything] of keeping a Myrmica colony in a container of nails, I have the proof I need that as long as their basic needs are met, they will survive anything and don't require some "fancy" setup with a nest and outworld attachement. Cleaning is pretty easy in this container too.


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#2 Offline Nare - Posted August 3 2018 - 7:23 AM

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I thought you were done with ants.



#3 Offline dermy - Posted August 3 2018 - 7:56 AM

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I thought you were done with ants.

It was a colony that was doomed either way, going to be sprayed. I've known about it for 3+ years so figured the least I could do is save it and keep it best I can. I know they don't need much to survive, hence the non technical setup. After leaving ants in a setup full of nails and the queen surviving 4 weeks without food [whoops!] they should do more than fine in a nice setup like this.

 

 

It has some male alates which is kind of annoying because I don't know exactly when they will fly outside. I'm sure I speak for lots of people when I say male alates don't matter that much. I'd assume they'll just get recycled back into the colony. I did also get a bit of brood, but not much right now. I have a few more days [maybe] to go and collect what else I can before they get sprayed.



#4 Offline dermy - Posted August 13 2018 - 3:28 AM

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August 13th/2018
This colony is still being collected, I have 25+ queens and around 2000+ workers and a few males in it. They are really good at putting dirt over their barrier and trying to get out of their current setup. My solution for now has been to keep cleaning it and re-applying my canola oil barrier, but I might need to move them into a dirtless setup or something else.

I'm suprised with how well they cope and still manage to produce eggs at 13-14c which is the highest I can keep them at and still keep them away from danger [hopefully nothing is ever 100%] The queens have been laying eggs so that's how I know they are doing well. My Camponotus after 3-4 months of being at this level [13-14c] have all perished except one so that's why I was
worried about the temprature.


Here's a highlight of how well they do with eating:[this was just some sugar water on a q-tip, which I removed after they were done]




I'll keep you updated, I will feed them some mealworm tomorrow and get a few more of the workers/whatever else I can get before the spraying [it's been really hot here, broke some records I think of over 35c even hotter in the south]
 



#5 Offline dermy - Posted August 18 2018 - 9:20 AM

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August 18th/2018
So some interesting stuff has happened, they've decided to start using the dirt to climb past my barrier, and try and escape. There's gotta be over 2 thousand workers in this colony and with 25 queens probably much more on the way.
Here's a quick video on how big the colony looks right now, whilst I determine how I'm gonna keep them contained:

 

 

I will likely edit this post up when I figure out what plan I'm going to do.

 

Edit:

 

I took a bit to get out a bit of the soil that was on the bottom, since I think there was too much and it was helping them to pass the barrier of Canola Oil, something I've used in the past with no problems, via sticking the dirt into the oil and making a bride to the air holes and out of their setup.
I am actually surprised with how large this colony is, I took a video and even let them swarm up my finger for a bit and they got a nice opportunity to take a nibble on my fingers.

Video:


The one thing I regret is putting in the Paper towel so soon, because there was a lot of workers, and queens inside of it, that weren't filmed.


Edited by dermy, August 18 2018 - 10:52 AM.

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#6 Offline dermy - Posted August 24 2018 - 8:36 AM

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These ants still continue to get around/through my barrier. I've never had a Myrmica colony get past a good barrier of Canola Oil before this one. Although it could just be because of how huge this colony is, here's a video showing about 40-50% of the Colony [I was cleaning them out and just gave up after I saw just how many were in the Colony]

 

 

 

Spoiler

 

I'm gonna slowly wind them down here in the next few weeks to get them ready for Hibernation come October. It's already getting single digits at night time here and barely reaching 20c during the peak sunlight hours of the day.







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