Will's Ant Journal 2016

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WillWithAnts
Posts: 175
Joined: Mon Jul 27, 2015 4:22 pm
Location: South Dakota

Will's Ant Journal 2016

Post: # 4857Post WillWithAnts
Sun Feb 07, 2016 2:18 am

Hello everyone! This is my journal for the 2016 season :D

I'll give a little intro. Feel free to skip it ;)

Mid-Summer of last year I decided to set my mind to something a little odd. I decided I wanted to own a colony of ants. Why? When my classmates ask me that question, part of me is dumbfounded. "Have you ever looked at what they do?" I ask them. "They are amazing!" I say, but I never know where to begin relaying what epic feats the ants do in their day-to-day survival. The first masters of organization, gathering, construction, farming, war, slavery; all these proficiencies, and yet to the everyday person they go almost unrecognized. People look in the night skies for new life to communicate with and hopefully learn from, but sometimes we don't simply look at the daily undertakings beneath our feet. (P.s. no hate to the astronomers, astrophysicists and such, love you guys, keep up the good work :D)

Anyway, that's my rant, and it can stay right there for now.

Last Year
This previous June I caught two Camponotus queens that both gave rise to colonies of about 8 members each before dieing of suspected contamination. I know, not exactly a success story, but that can happen if you are inexperienced. Their story can be found in the "Ant Graveyard". http://forum.AntsCanada.com/viewtopic.php?f=42&t=169

What I have now
The same season, towards the end of August, I also caught three Lasius Neoniger and one unidentified queen. All but one L. Neoniger queen survived hibernation :) . Here is the beginning of their journals! I hope you enjoy!

Quick brief
I woke my ants from hibernation January 10th. I fed them January 13th or so, with a healthy and well-balanced meal of chicken and gatorade ;). None of the queens seem terribly busy, which is a good thing. My queen without an ID has laid 4-5 eggs

Queen #1: L. Neoniger - Winged
Image


Queen #2: L.Neoniger - Normal
Image


Queen #3 Unidentified
Image

These are my starting three! I will keep updates when new news hits!

P.s. Feel free to take your shot at IDing queen 3#, I'd greatly appreciate it!
Keeper of Lasius neoniger and Crematogaster cerasi :D. Woke ants January 10th
2015 Journal: http://forum.AntsCanada.com/viewtopic.php?f=42&t=169
2016 Journal: http://forum.AntsCanada.com/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=821

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Ants4fun
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Location: Sioux Falls, SOUTH Dakotah

Re: Will's Ant Journal 2016

Post: # 4866Post Ants4fun
Sun Feb 07, 2016 3:37 pm

Crematogaster sp.

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WillWithAnts
Posts: 175
Joined: Mon Jul 27, 2015 4:22 pm
Location: South Dakota

Re: Update!

Post: # 5218Post WillWithAnts
Thu Mar 31, 2016 11:49 pm

Thank you, Ants4fun, for helping me narrow the unidentified queen to Crematogaster sp.! After that I was able to figure out that she is a Crematogaster cerasi queen!

As you all may notice, the growth has been really slow :lol:. By the end of February, not much had happened. In 53 days, this is the progress that has taken place:

- All 3 of my queens now have eggs
- My Cr. cerasi queen now has 4 small/medium sized larvae
- The winged queen still hasn't taken off her wings - she is keeping them for good luck!

Here are some pictures!

Winged queen - L. neoniger
Image

Queen #2 - L. neoniger
I couldn't get a very good picture of her through the test tube because it is cloudy. She is tending to her clutch!
Image
"Acrobat Ant" - Cr. cerasi
Image
Sugar water :D
Image
Thank you for reading! I will keep an eye on them for the next few weeks and we will see if anything interesting happens!
Keeper of Lasius neoniger and Crematogaster cerasi :D. Woke ants January 10th
2015 Journal: http://forum.AntsCanada.com/viewtopic.php?f=42&t=169
2016 Journal: http://forum.AntsCanada.com/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=821

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WillWithAnts
Posts: 175
Joined: Mon Jul 27, 2015 4:22 pm
Location: South Dakota

Re: Will's Ant Journal 2016

Post: # 5769Post WillWithAnts
Mon May 16, 2016 3:23 am

:shock: Oh boy, it has been a long time. The good thing is I have news!

Crematogaster cerasi colony
First off, my Crematogaster cerasi queen is now my Crematogaster cerasi colony! Last week, the first worker arrived. I have 6 workers in this colony now and lots of pupae, which is a promising sight! When they had 4 workers (about 3 days after the first) I gave them some sugar water for their sugar source and some protein in the form of peanut butter. Here are some pictures!
Image
You can see one worker is noticeably lighter than the others. This is because she is very young.
Image
Two days ago, I decided to feed them again. They had 5 workers at that time. I mashed up some chicken with tweezers and gave them a piece the size of a pinhead. One worker gladly took the meat and toted it around, as if to show off her prize :lol:. She took little rests to chew the food. They filled up on the sugar water and chicken and I haven't fed them since.

By the way
Workers give the protein to the larvae, which have the chewing power to break it down enough to digest. Then the workers are shared some of the processed protein, but they don't need as much because they do not grow. They eat most of the sugar the colony brings in.

I noticed that their water reserve is running low. No big deal, what I do is tape the old test tube to a fresh one and wait for them to move in. I will try my best to leave them alone for a couple days, but when you have workers finally arriving, it gets harder to give them privacy :oops:

Lasius neoniger queens
My wingless Lasius neoniger queen has had a couple pupae for a few days, so I expect them to eclose soon :D. What isn't good news is that my two Lasius neoniger queens are lacking larvae. My winged queen has had nothing but eggs for a long time. Any ideas?

Recent catches
Finally, Last weekend I caught these two Camponotus sp. (I'm pretty sure they are camponotus because that is what is flying now) but I havn't got them completely IDed down to the species yet. I have never seen this ant before :| so if anyone knows I would appreciate the help. They pull at the cotton a lot and one of them has cotton stands in her serrated mandibles. I tried pulling them off but they are stuck! I decided to leave them both alone for a while until I know more about them.
Image
Image
If you have any stabs at the species, I'd love to hear them!

I will put out an update if anything cool happens!
Keeper of Lasius neoniger and Crematogaster cerasi :D. Woke ants January 10th
2015 Journal: http://forum.AntsCanada.com/viewtopic.php?f=42&t=169
2016 Journal: http://forum.AntsCanada.com/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=821

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Firestar987654321
Posts: 53
Joined: Tue Nov 15, 2016 3:37 am
Location: Hong Kong

Re: Will's Ant Journal 2016

Post: # 15183Post Firestar987654321
Mon Dec 05, 2016 2:10 am

Wow Will, nice job at your queens! Right now it's December, so there aren't any queens around so i am waiting for late spring and summer. :) Good luck with your Lasius neoniger and Camponotus colonies! :D
Ant Love Forever! #TeamNativeAnts! Ants, our masters. ;)

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Firestar987654321
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Re: Will's Ant Journal 2016

Post: # 15184Post Firestar987654321
Mon Dec 05, 2016 2:25 am

I mean Crematogaster queen :oops:
Ant Love Forever! #TeamNativeAnts! Ants, our masters. ;)

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Batspiderfish
Posts: 1933
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Location: Maine

Re: Will's Ant Journal 2016

Post: # 15192Post Batspiderfish
Mon Dec 05, 2016 8:57 am

I hope that Formica social parasite in the last post is ok...
Links:
Rules & Requirements for Identification:
http://forum.AntsCanada.com/viewtopic.php?f=48&t=292

How to take pictures for identification:
http://forum.AntsCanada.com/viewtopic.php?f=48&t=2167

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WillWithAnts
Posts: 175
Joined: Mon Jul 27, 2015 4:22 pm
Location: South Dakota

Re: Will's Ant Journal 2016

Post: # 17713Post WillWithAnts
Thu Mar 02, 2017 10:14 pm

Batspiderfish wrote:
Mon Dec 05, 2016 8:57 am
I hope that Formica social parasite in the last post is ok...
Ooohhh, that's what they were. That is probably why they were such cotton-pullers too. . . nope, she didn't make it to Winter.
Firestar987654321 wrote:
Mon Dec 05, 2016 2:10 am
Wow Will, nice job at your queens! Right now it's December, so there aren't any queens around so i am waiting for late spring and summer. :) Good luck with your Lasius neoniger and Camponotus colonies! :D
Thank you! I woke up my 80-member Formica colony a few weeks ago and they have been doing fine. The 4 queens are not producing eggs yet, but they probably will soon. I woke up the rest of my ants yesterday. I will feed them their first meal in about 3 months soon.
Good luck catching queens this year!
Keeper of Lasius neoniger and Crematogaster cerasi :D. Woke ants January 10th
2015 Journal: http://forum.AntsCanada.com/viewtopic.php?f=42&t=169
2016 Journal: http://forum.AntsCanada.com/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=821

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antscanada
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Re: Will's Ant Journal 2016

Post: # 17822Post antscanada
Mon Mar 06, 2017 6:47 am

So late but great journal! ☺ I love C. cerasi!
Ant Love Forever.

Antsinohio
Posts: 61
Joined: Mon May 22, 2017 8:37 am
Location: North Canton OHIO USA

Re: Will's Ant Journal 2016

Post: # 25731Post Antsinohio
Thu Jul 20, 2017 4:15 am

I just caught a crematogaster cerasi colony yesterday.
Hello everyone


Owner of:
3 tetramorium caespitum queens and 1 colony
2 camponotus Pennsylvanicus queens
2 crematogaster cerasi colonies

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