Caught a Formica Fusca colony, what next?

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JDSweetMeat
Posts: 17
Joined: Sat May 25, 2019 1:41 pm
Location: Centralia, Illinois

Caught a Formica Fusca colony, what next?

Post: # 59196Post JDSweetMeat
Wed Jun 05, 2019 11:58 pm

I was digging around for extremely young Formica Fusca colonies (because queen alates fly and hibernate in the fall and hibernate over winter before begining their colonies in the spring). I captured a queen, 7 workers, and about 15 brood (10 were larva, 5 were pupa by my count). They are currently in a test tube setup (I coaxed them to move into it of their own free will after I excavated their colony. They moved in, and I sealed it up after I was sure everybody was in. I've also noticed that since their move-in the queen laid a new batch of about 10 eggs.

Now, what I need:

1.) What is the ideal temperature to encourage growth in this species?

2.) I want a colony of at least a few hundre and no more than a few thousand (as that is the limit of what I am able to support), but I don't particularly want to wait 2-3 years to get there (i.e. My camponatus queen will apparently 2-3 take years to develop a mature colony). 1-2 years would be preferable -- is formica suitable for my desires?

3.) Will a generic baby powder barrier work to keep them contained/they aren't escape artists, right?

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Quizzie
Posts: 11
Joined: Tue Jun 04, 2019 1:45 pm

Re: Caught a Formica Fusca colony, what next?

Post: # 59233Post Quizzie
Fri Jun 07, 2019 6:26 am

2. Formica fusca colonies reach only about 500 workers, 2000 at max. Formica usually lay eggs only after hibernation, so no quick start here.
3. Should be fine. Baby powder is next best after fluon. Formica ants like to build "bridges" in oil or vaseline.

TheRealAntMan
Posts: 624
Joined: Tue Sep 19, 2017 5:59 pm
Location: Chicago, Illinois

Re: Caught a Formica Fusca colony, what next?

Post: # 59238Post TheRealAntMan
Fri Jun 07, 2019 11:55 am

JDSweetMeat wrote:
Wed Jun 05, 2019 11:58 pm
I was digging around for extremely young Formica Fusca colonies (because queen alates fly and hibernate in the fall and hibernate over winter before begining their colonies in the spring). I captured a queen, 7 workers, and about 15 brood (10 were larva, 5 were pupa by my count). They are currently in a test tube setup (I coaxed them to move into it of their own free will after I excavated their colony. They moved in, and I sealed it up after I was sure everybody was in. I've also noticed that since their move-in the queen laid a new batch of about 10 eggs.

Now, what I need:

1.) What is the ideal temperature to encourage growth in this species?

2.) I want a colony of at least a few hundre and no more than a few thousand (as that is the limit of what I am able to support), but I don't particularly want to wait 2-3 years to get there (i.e. My camponatus queen will apparently 2-3 take years to develop a mature colony). 1-2 years would be preferable -- is formica suitable for my desires?

3.) Will a generic baby powder barrier work to keep them contained/they aren't escape artists, right?
There are no Formica fusca in North America. What we previously thought was F.fusca are actually Formica subaenescens which aren't related to F.fusca at all. I recommend you do an id request and find out what your ants truly are.
An ants' strength can be rivaled by few animals compared to relative body size.

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