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What is the next step? C. Penn queen lost all workers.

Posted: Wed Jun 26, 2019 1:32 pm
by solidgold
I had a colony that I thought was ready for transfer to a small formicarium. My queen had at least 20 workers and the colony was over a year old before I transferred them from the test tube. Everything seemed fine for a while, she was laying eggs and the workers were moving detritus and foraging for food - but then workers started showing up dead. I couldn't get the queen out without breaking the formicarium and I wasn't even sure how to do that safely without damaging her. Now she has left the "nest" and appears to be in search of a new place to start a colony.

This is the first time I've kept ants but I'm trying really hard to feed them good food and practice good husbandry. I'm not sure what went wrong. Should I put her back into a test tube? Is it too late to save her?

Re: What is the next step? C. Penn queen lost all workers.

Posted: Thu Jun 27, 2019 3:51 pm
by Camponotus
She needs workers to feed her

Re: What is the next step? C. Penn queen lost all workers.

Posted: Tue Jul 02, 2019 7:22 pm
by Hawkeye
The conditions might have been unfavourable, temperature or humidity might have been off, hard to tell. In the wild apparently very few starting colonies survive.
I would suggest trying to coax her back into a test tube, and feeding her loads of protein. (Which she needs to continue producing new eggs)
She should be able to eat on her own, it is just more effective if she has workers to come feed her, so she doesn't have to invest any energy.

Did you just drop the ants in? Or connected them to the formicarium and they decided to move?

Re: What is the next step? C. Penn queen lost all workers.

Posted: Thu Jul 04, 2019 8:23 am
by Hawkeye
Camponotus wrote:
Thu Jun 27, 2019 3:51 pm
She needs workers to feed her
Is she doing any better?