How to extract Queen from wild colony?

Questions from those who are just starting or considering getting into the ant keeping hobby. If you’re intimidated or confused by the in-depth posts of the other sections of this forum, feel free to post here, and we'll start from square one!

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StormAnts444

How to extract Queen from wild colony?

Post: # 11319Post StormAnts444
Sun Sep 18, 2016 3:27 pm

I am on a search to find a queen ant and want to know the best way to extract a queen from a wild colony?

Thank you

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idahoantgirl
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Re: How to extract Queen from wild colony?

Post: # 11325Post idahoantgirl
Sun Sep 18, 2016 3:52 pm

It is very difficult to impossible. YOu should try to catch a queen that has just mated instead.
Proverbs 6:6-8

Go to the ant, you sluggard;
consider its ways and be wise!
It has no commander,
no overseer or ruler,
yet it stores its provisions in summer
and gathers its food at harvest.

Keeping Tetramorium immigrans, Tapinoma Sessile

MCWren

Re: How to extract Queen from wild colony?

Post: # 11345Post MCWren
Sun Sep 18, 2016 6:55 pm

StormAnts444 wrote:I am on a search to find a queen ant and want to know the best way to extract a queen from a wild colony?

Thank you
It's easy. I did it just yesterday. Just lift up rocks and logs until you find a colony with a queen. However, don't just "extract" the queen. Take as many workers and as much brood as possible. Queens taken from their colonies usually get stressed and die.

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larynx
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Re: How to extract Queen from wild colony?

Post: # 11346Post larynx
Sun Sep 18, 2016 7:06 pm

This is difficult for most species, most of the time. Some species queens will stay shallow at times (under rocks, or debris), and will make it easy in some instances.
Just keep in mind, if you do find one from an established colony it will be very stressful and possibly mean the death of the queen, and it will absolutely be death for the rest of the colony left behind.
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AceCadet
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Re: How to extract Queen from wild colony?

Post: # 11347Post AceCadet
Sun Sep 18, 2016 7:09 pm

It may be frustrating trying to find a queen post nuptial flight but its way more rewarding. Even if you don't find one this autumn there is always next spring/summer. Plus taking a queen from a wild colony would mean destroying the colony and most likely death. And more than likely while trying to dig the queen out you will kill her. Its really not worth it. Just my two cents.
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Batspiderfish
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Re: How to extract Queen from wild colony?

Post: # 11366Post Batspiderfish
Sun Sep 18, 2016 8:24 pm

Yeah, don't go tearing up ant nests just to find a queen. It is destructive and impatient.
If you enjoy my expertise and identifications, please do not put wild populations at risk of disease by releasing pet colonies. We are responsible to give our pets the best care we can manage for the rest of their lives.

StormAnts444

Re: How to extract Queen from wild colony?

Post: # 11634Post StormAnts444
Tue Sep 20, 2016 9:50 pm

I promise I will not dig up any ants! ;)

AzarinEvil
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Re: How to extract Queen from wild colony?

Post: # 50526Post AzarinEvil
Mon Sep 17, 2018 1:05 am

I am curious about this as well, only because we have Myrmica Rubra as an invasive species and there is a small outbreak within walking distance. I know doing this is a bad idea but I also kind of want to help solve the outbreak while not just killing them all. I also want to state I understand my interest in doing so with a fire ant nest is insanely dangerous.. and really, really dumb.

AntSprites
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Location: Arizona

Re: How to extract Queen from wild colony?

Post: # 51871Post AntSprites
Thu Oct 04, 2018 9:42 am

larynx wrote:
Sun Sep 18, 2016 7:06 pm
This is difficult for most species, most of the time. Some species queens will stay shallow at times (under rocks, or debris), and will make it easy in some instances.
Just keep in mind, if you do find one from an established colony it will be very stressful and possibly mean the death of the queen, and it will absolutely be death for the rest of the colony left behind.
I thought ants would work without a queen... So the current colony would really only die of natural causes anyways. Taking the queen is just moving where the future colony is gonna continue to grow. (That is if the queen doesn't die of stress first)

AntsDakota
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Re: How to extract Queen from wild colony?

Post: # 51937Post AntsDakota
Fri Oct 05, 2018 3:51 pm

AntSprites wrote:
Thu Oct 04, 2018 9:42 am
larynx wrote:
Sun Sep 18, 2016 7:06 pm
This is difficult for most species, most of the time. Some species queens will stay shallow at times (under rocks, or debris), and will make it easy in some instances.
Just keep in mind, if you do find one from an established colony it will be very stressful and possibly mean the death of the queen, and it will absolutely be death for the rest of the colony left behind.
I thought ants would work without a queen... So the current colony would really only die of natural causes anyways. Taking the queen is just moving where the future colony is gonna continue to grow. (That is if the queen doesn't die of stress first)
They do work without a queen, they just have no one to reproduce, so they work like a normal colony until they die of old age.
"God made every kind of wild beasts and every kind of livestock and every kind of creeping things;" (including ants) "and God saw that it was good." Genesis 1:25

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