The Total Ant Guide!

Discussions about the care and keeping of ants

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The Total Ant Guide!

Post: # 70566Post CabboAntsGuy
Sun May 31, 2020 10:32 am

Hello to any of you have clicked on this topic and are interested in it. I know most of you are expecting a full blown break down on keep ants, but that is not exactly what this is. This is a place where anyone may come and post any bits of information they have or would like to share. Please refrain from asking questions here. This page is for posting smaller bits of info rather than putting it all into one big post. Feel free to post any information you may have regarding the first stages of keeping ants, long term info, food, or hunting tips.
Please try to keep post related to general species and not one specific species.

Thank you everyone. This is now really the communities page, but i will be on sometimes to monitor and maybe offer my own info.
Please regard the way this page works and have fun!

3 camponotus pennsylvanicus
2 formica subsericea
The Camponotus Crew!
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Post: # 72529Post AntsLuxembourg
Fri Jul 24, 2020 9:32 am

I feel like I should start with some general info then.


It's the most important part when it comes to antspecies. In my oppinion there are basically Normal Ants, Harvester Ants and Fungus Ants.

Normal Ants or most ant species eat insects. But not every species likes the same kind of stuff. So where to get your food for them? Well you can go to a petstore that sells pets like snakes, spiders, scorpions or lizards. They ususally sell the stuff you need to provide food for your colony. The most common ones are Mealworms, Superworms, Crickets or Cockroaches. You can ask your local petstore if they have them and if not ask if they can order them. For example a local fish store also might sell at least some meal worm. ;)
But until you get life insects, you can also feed them with some honey. But careful. Some species actually drown as they are heavy enough to sink into the honey and get stuck.
Alternatively you can also soft boil an egg and offer them some eggwhite or try fishfood.
Some species also enjoy to keep aphids which provide them with sugary liquid that they can drink.

Harvester Ants mostly only eat seed. Seeds4Life baby. ;P
I have written a pretty big list with what they may like or not already in my thread over here.
What you can do if you have the chance, go out and pick a lot of dandelion flowers. Those with the white head. If you only cut of the head, then they will take care of picking the seeds and cutting of the white flighting stuff. However I recommend to at least trim them a bit as the white stuff will leave a mess in your setup that you need to clean up. One good sneeze and wooosh. Everything becomes a fluffy white winter wonderland. You can also get lose bird seeds like sunflower seeds. You can also try pepper seeds as they are easy to collect. :)
They may enjoy insects but as far as I know they mostly only eat seeds as those can be stored for a very long time.

Fungus Ants or better known as Leafcutter ants will grow and eat their own fungus. However they need leafs in order to grow their fungus. You may need to do some research on your species in particular but it should be possible. They also may use oatmeal to grow their fungus. So offer them a bowl if you like. Oh and enough space to grow their fungus.

Generally all the ants love them some honey, however I know that for example messor barbarus doesn't like it and they will deliberatly just throw their garbage on it. They are crazy in regards to their seeds and mostly only favor them.

That's it so far with my general Guide for you guys. If you need more info then ask your question in the forum. I'm mostly active in Ant Care and Ant Keeping ( and offer my help and advice to everyone.
Doing some proper research is the best way to start an antcolony.

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