Warm up my queen with heating cable?

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opineault
Posts: 11
Joined: Sat Jun 23, 2018 11:22 pm
Location: Ottawa, Ontario

Warm up my queen with heating cable?

Post: # 50605Post opineault
Tue Sep 18, 2018 8:58 am

Hello,

I have a queen ant (I believe camponotus pensylvanicus) that I caught June 2nd. Her eggs still have not developed and one of the theories is that she is too cold. The house is always around 20-22 degrees C.

I ended up ordering a heating cable for reptiles, etc. Now I'm looking for suggestions how to set it up. It hasn't arrived yet so I'm not sure how hot it actually gets though.

My wife suggested wrapping it around the water end of the test tube (with a small towel wrapped around first if it's too hot) and that warming up the water should be enough without creating hot spots in the queen's area of the tube.

Sounds like a good idea, but I figured I would ask the AC community as well.

MorbidBugg
Posts: 285
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Location: Orangeville

Re: Warm up my queen with heating cable?

Post: # 50618Post MorbidBugg
Tue Sep 18, 2018 11:19 am

Okay. A couple of thoughts on the subject. Camponotus prefer drier nests. This is important when deciding where to put any heat. Too close to the water it will start to raise the humidity of a nest as the water heats up and evaporates through the nest. They may become unhappy with the level of humidity. What kind of set up are they in? This may help isolate a great place for it. If the nest is big enough having it on either the left or right of the enclosure would allow for a warm spot if that's what they really need as well as a spot to cool down.

There is also the issue of water drying up faster if placed by the tube and would require more frequent water changes (do to evaporation and molds and bacteria that live in water LOVE heat.. so there's a precaution)
Ants are life's most successful invaders. Understand and respect that power.

opineault
Posts: 11
Joined: Sat Jun 23, 2018 11:22 pm
Location: Ottawa, Ontario

Re: Warm up my queen with heating cable?

Post: # 50622Post opineault
Tue Sep 18, 2018 11:41 am

She is still in her original test tube setup for over 3 months. With a bundle of eggs that are not developing into larva :(

I was also thinking maybe a small box with the cable around the perimeter, and the test tube inside on a towel?
I don't know.

MorbidBugg
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Location: Orangeville

Re: Warm up my queen with heating cable?

Post: # 50623Post MorbidBugg
Tue Sep 18, 2018 11:50 am

I'd suggest trying to make a rack to set the tube on top of and have a gap underneath to put the cable that way if you need to adjust then add or subtract distance rather than putting a potential risk of fire such as flammable materials . Personally. I don't have much experience with heating cables. I use a 60 watt warm light bulb and I just make sure I use opaque paper so they get the ambient heat without risk of being bright in the nest.
Ants are life's most successful invaders. Understand and respect that power.

Boomdale
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Re: Warm up my queen with heating cable?

Post: # 50649Post Boomdale
Tue Sep 18, 2018 5:19 pm

I would definitely not wrap it around the tube at any place at all. Even the smallest wattage cable will make it like the Sierra in there. Most of the time the cable is just laying across the top or bottom of the tube or laying next to it to generate ambient heat.
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JoeHostile1
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Re: Warm up my queen with heating cable?

Post: # 50852Post JoeHostile1
Wed Sep 19, 2018 11:14 am

Honestly your house at 20C is not too cold for the queen to produce workers. 3 months with eggs that have not developed into larvae means she is eating the eggs and laying new ones. Most likely she is infertile and the eggs are no good. Are you feeding her? 3 months without food is a long time. I would give her sugar water and an insect and see if any the eggs turn into larvae. If you have been feeding her then probably like I said she is infertile.

I would be very careful tring to heat a test tube with a heating cable. Glass traps heat and can get very hot especially if you have it running for an extended period of time. This is how a lot of people roast their ants. At the very least I would connect another test tube so the queen can escape of it gets too hot in there.
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idahoantgirl
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Re: Warm up my queen with heating cable?

Post: # 50853Post idahoantgirl
Wed Sep 19, 2018 11:53 am

it could just be that she has been stressed from getting checked on too often. It's not necessarily that she hasn't mated. Campo. tends to have issues with stress
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.

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PwnerPie
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Re: Warm up my queen with heating cable?

Post: # 51119Post PwnerPie
Thu Sep 20, 2018 1:04 pm

feed her, and keep her warm. i do that with my campos and they do great. only feed my queens once, honey and a small piece of mealworm when i catch them, then remove the mealworm a few days later. queens get their fill, then relax and lay eggs.
i have found campos love heat, far more than formica and myrmica. my house is already always at 70, but i recently moved the heater cable from the side of the portal to under the entrance of the test tube, and the campos moved all of their brood over the top of the heater cord. I did the same thing with formica and they moved out of the test tube altogether to get away from the heat.
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