Lasius Niger problems

Discussions about the care and keeping of ants

Moderator: ooper01

AntAnett
Posts: 42
Joined: Sat Aug 18, 2018 9:28 am
Location: Poland

Lasius Niger problems

Post: # 49159Post AntAnett
Sun Sep 02, 2018 3:18 pm

Hi! I have a problem with my ant colony of Lasius Niger. I bought them online in my country, Queen and 6 workers. Two of the workers died, one 2-3 days from ariving, second one last night. Two days ago they've cut throught the cotton to the water chamber, and had a little flood. The test tube is made of plastic, so I've cut few holes in the test tube to get rid of water. All remaining 5 workers were fine then, but last night one died. Larvae is eating the body of that dead ant, but I can't tell if the ant died by itself, or was killed by the others. Now I'm trying to force them to change the test tube, but they refuse to go, thought the new one if covered in darkness, and the old one is in bright light. What else can I do to make them abandon the old nest?

This is how it all looked the day before I've lost the second ant:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rdaCjy4Iq30


It was after the flood, and the water was mostlly out, but the test tube is still wet a bit
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmiM_PNwB9wuId1eRfE0WDA/videos

ClashOwenBash
Posts: 116
Joined: Sun Jul 15, 2018 1:58 am
Location: Oxfordshire, England

Re: Lasius Niger problems

Post: # 49193Post ClashOwenBash
Mon Sep 03, 2018 4:40 am

You are feeding them?
Currently caring for a Lasius Niger colony :D

Founding: :)
Lasius Niger
Lasius Flavus
Myrmica Rubra

AntAnett
Posts: 42
Joined: Sat Aug 18, 2018 9:28 am
Location: Poland

Re: Lasius Niger problems

Post: # 49203Post AntAnett
Mon Sep 03, 2018 7:54 am

Yeah, they have honey mixed with water every 3 days, and a half of melaworm. I am actualy freezing mealworms, cause I don't want to keep them alive at home. They not really like mealworms, or I'm giving them to much/often.

They are doing fine now, after that flood in the test tube. But the cotton is still wet, so I thing they will change test tube when the cotton is dry, I wonder when will that be... I don't wanna warm the test tube, I am just flashing led light onto it, but it looks they do not bother much with light.

Now the next thing is, I think one of the pupae is out and I mught see white ant in the test tube, but I'm not sure, it's hard to see with my cheap microscope. But whatever thet is it's not moving and other ants don't care abiut it. From the other hand larvae also are not moving much, so I don't know. Could someone show me photos/movies how ants look like just after gettin out of cocoon?
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmiM_PNwB9wuId1eRfE0WDA/videos

AntAnett
Posts: 42
Joined: Sat Aug 18, 2018 9:28 am
Location: Poland

Re: Lasius Niger problems

Post: # 49610Post AntAnett
Thu Sep 06, 2018 2:42 pm

I've given my ants smaller arena, small plastic box with two holes for two test tubes, one old with ants inside, second one empty and clean, waiting for becoming their new home. The water supplies in old tube is gone, but the cotton might be still a bit wet. But My ants still refuse to change the tube! What can I do?! Thankfully for now, the dying of workes has stoped and I have 4 workers, and I think one pupae, but I am not sure if my naming is OK. I have 2-3 cocoons, and one thing that is out of cocoon, shall I call it pupae? Or maybe the cocoon is pupae? I know that is a basic knoweldge, but for someone for whom English is foreign language it can be hard.

Now, what is a bit strange for me, is the fact, that this kid that is out of cocoon is totally white! I've seen movies on yt showing small ant getting out of the cocoon but it usualy have some color, lighter than adult, but a color. My "kid" is white-transparent. Is this OK? And I've thought I've had 3 kids like that, but when I looked closer I saw that it is probably a pile of fresh eggs, only that pile has a shape, that can be taken for the ant. One white kid has legs, it's 3 days old and I see small eyes! :mrgreen: That's totally amazing!
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmiM_PNwB9wuId1eRfE0WDA/videos

AntsLuxembourg
Posts: 203
Joined: Sun Jun 24, 2018 7:17 am
Location: Niederfeulen, Luxembourg
Contact:

Re: Lasius Niger problems

Post: # 49612Post AntsLuxembourg
Thu Sep 06, 2018 3:52 pm

Alright. Let me give you some help. The name circle is this. Egg, Larvae, Puppae, Worker. They go from Egg to larvae then to larvae which is when they look a bit like worms then they turn into puppae which is when they make a cocoon to change their shape. Some ants don't make a cocoon so you can see them turn into white ants. And then when they are done they hatch as workers.

About moving your colony. Just keep the light on that area. It will drive them out eventually but it can take some time. I had to move a queen and her eggs earlier because her testtube got mold from her wings. I had to make shake her testtube a little bit so she fell into the new one and then I used some very fine tweezers to move the eggs. Luckily I managed to move the eggs without destroying too many. But I'm lucky to be able to move them at all without destroying all the eggs. It's very difficult and not for everyone. You got at least some workers so they will do that for you anyway.

I would sugguest just to keep shining your light onto that testtube and to keep the rest of the setup dark. They will try to move pretty soon anyway because their nest loses humidity which means the nest dries out. The ants don't need this much food. Perhaps give them a drop of honey one a week until they got more workers. I got 8 colonies of lasius niger and they all were very hungry today because I didn't feed them often enough but I they didn't starve to death of course. I feed them last week so it's fine. You can give them a bit of honey (no need to mix it with water) and perhaps once every few weeks a piece of a mealworm. I'm not going to feed my colony any insects for now but a protein mix I bought from an antstore in Spain when I ordered some equipment.

The dead workers. Try to remove them from the setup because their bodies are just the left overs. I'm currently streaming a colony of my lasius niger on twitch and I do know quite a lot about ants in general but of course I'm far away from being an expert and always thirsty for knowledge. :D

If you have any more questions just ask me. Could you perhaps share a picture of your current setup with me so I could give you some ideas for improvement.
Doing some proper research is the best way to start an antcolony. After the research you can still go and fetsh a colony from one of your local GAN-Farmers.

Founding colonies:
10 - Lasius Niger Colony
1 - Messor Barbarus

Darkhero0987
Posts: 72
Joined: Thu Jul 12, 2018 8:12 pm
Location: Steinbach, Manitoba

Re: Lasius Niger problems

Post: # 49632Post Darkhero0987
Thu Sep 06, 2018 9:19 pm

AntAnett wrote:
Mon Sep 03, 2018 7:54 am
Yeah, they have honey mixed with water every 3 days, and a half of melaworm. I am actualy freezing mealworms, cause I don't want to keep them alive at home. They not really like mealworms, or I'm giving them to much/often.

They are doing fine now, after that flood in the test tube. But the cotton is still wet, so I thing they will change test tube when the cotton is dry, I wonder when will that be... I don't wanna warm the test tube, I am just flashing led light onto it, but it looks they do not bother much with light.

Now the next thing is, I think one of the pupae is out and I mught see white ant in the test tube, but I'm not sure, it's hard to see with my cheap microscope. But whatever thet is it's not moving and other ants don't care abiut it. From the other hand larvae also are not moving much, so I don't know. Could someone show me photos/movies how ants look like just after gettin out of cocoon?
I cound alot of the ants I have taken care of lately dont like mealworms are all for some reason wont even touch them moved to crickets they seem to like them abit more. I had a bad mold out brake in one of my tubes and it took the ants a month to move some times it takes along time
Founding:
Formica Subsericea,
3x Lasius sp

Keeping
2x Camponotus Novaeboracensis

Hunter36o
Posts: 217
Joined: Fri Jun 15, 2018 9:57 am
Location: Dublin, Ireland

Re: Lasius Niger problems

Post: # 49657Post Hunter36o
Fri Sep 07, 2018 4:39 am

Okay going to join in here hope y'all do not.mind.
One it is completely normal for Lasius Niger's to come out almost pure white. I have plenty of Lasius Niger's and all workers come out white then darken over time so do not worry. If it is white and not moving it is fresh from the pupae stage and its body is still too soft is all.

As for your meal work issue. They actually have a decent exo skeleton and Lasius Niger's although good workers and aggressive by nature but do not hold powerful jaws like other species, so maybe try some superworms/ kingworms/ morio worms. I used the 3 names because I am not sure which is used in your area of the world. They look a lot like meal worms but of course are a different species and the exo is softer.

Larvae move but not much. Who needs to move when your sister is going to come over move you to a better spot then feed you. Life of an ant larvae for lasius is pretty laid back I must say.

Moving ants is the bane of my ant keeping so far. I literally am at the point where when changing test tubes I put a drop of honey in the old one on the "roof" of the tube so it's not in the way and then I attached a second tube, make sure there is just enough space for air but not ants. I then expose one tube to the light and what not while the second is covered by a roll of paper and also one of my tee shirts so make is feel darker, not cold but not hot and cozy. Then I just leave them alone. Check on them in the mornings until they move. This can take a few minutes or a few days. Depends on the ants.
Officially caring for 4 Lasius colonies :D :D :D

Founding stage:
11x Lasius Niger
1x Myrmica Rubra
1x Myrmica ??

AntAnett
Posts: 42
Joined: Sat Aug 18, 2018 9:28 am
Location: Poland

Re: Lasius Niger problems

Post: # 49660Post AntAnett
Fri Sep 07, 2018 5:09 am

Thank's for help people :D I'll tell you how I prepare mealworms, I'm puting them into freezer, and then I'm taking out only one mealworm and while it's still freezed, I'm cutting his head off. Then I'm giving it to the ants, so they have all that liquid, from inside. I think I must invest in crickets, but they are hard to get at my local stores (small town), so I must buy them online, and that's also the problem, cause I'd like to freeze them alive so my ants would not get a cricket, that was dead for hours or even days before freezing. They are hard to catch, from the box, I've alway had a problem with that (I used to have prayin mantis, but it was to hard for me to watch them eating other insects alive).

About mealworms, my freshly bought colony of Messor Barbarus eats them with no problems. But I see, my Lasius Niger colony might just suffer from hunger...

About superworms, we call them strange, when translated to English, "wood eaters". I had a chance to buy them at store, but they were so thick, that I've thought it would be easier for my tiny ants to eat mealworms... funny... Can they also be frozen alive (without taking had off, that woud happen after being freezed)?
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmiM_PNwB9wuId1eRfE0WDA/videos

AntsLuxembourg
Posts: 203
Joined: Sun Jun 24, 2018 7:17 am
Location: Niederfeulen, Luxembourg
Contact:

Re: Lasius Niger problems

Post: # 49676Post AntsLuxembourg
Fri Sep 07, 2018 7:52 am

Your Lasius Niger won't go starving. You could just give them honey but they would lag the proteins so some insects every now and then should be fine.
Doing some proper research is the best way to start an antcolony. After the research you can still go and fetsh a colony from one of your local GAN-Farmers.

Founding colonies:
10 - Lasius Niger Colony
1 - Messor Barbarus

AntAnett
Posts: 42
Joined: Sat Aug 18, 2018 9:28 am
Location: Poland

Re: Lasius Niger problems

Post: # 49685Post AntAnett
Fri Sep 07, 2018 9:09 am

What about those superworms, can they be freezed?
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmiM_PNwB9wuId1eRfE0WDA/videos

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests