Yui907's Journal [with Videos and Images]

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Yui907
Posts: 12
Joined: Mon May 22, 2017 12:55 pm
Location: Yorkshire, United Kingdom
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Yui907's Journal [with Videos and Images]

Post: # 21873Post Yui907
Sat May 27, 2017 6:37 pm

Hello world.

Here's my intro:
Yui907 wrote:
Sat May 27, 2017 4:54 pm
Hello, I'm Yui907. I'm from Yorkshire and I'm currently studying for a health-related degree. I'm an army reservist and I currently own a Messor barbarus colony, which started from a single Queen.
So now that we're acquainted, let's talk business.

I'd like to encourage you to check out my poll over here.
Yui907 wrote:
Sat May 27, 2017 5:55 pm
So recently (I lie, actually a month ago now), I found out that some kinds of seed-collecting ants also mistakenly collect certain insect eggs, which have evolved specifically to be collected by ants so that the eggs are in a 'protected' nest. This interested me, as surely the moment the insect hatches, the ants would devour the (high-protien) newborns, right?

[Open the thread to read more and vote.]
Other than that, I'll be updating here with any news on my nest.
Nests:
Messor barbarus - 1 Year, population: ~150 (27/05/2017)

Equipment:
Omninest Vertical Small
http://www.AntsCanada.com/shop/omni-nest-vertical-small/

My journal:
http://forum.AntsCanada.com/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=3374

User avatar
Yui907
Posts: 12
Joined: Mon May 22, 2017 12:55 pm
Location: Yorkshire, United Kingdom
Contact:

Re: Yui907's Journal [with Videos and Images]

Post: # 21874Post Yui907
Sat May 27, 2017 6:39 pm

[Reserved for OP]
Nests:
Messor barbarus - 1 Year, population: ~150 (27/05/2017)

Equipment:
Omninest Vertical Small
http://www.AntsCanada.com/shop/omni-nest-vertical-small/

My journal:
http://forum.AntsCanada.com/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=3374

User avatar
Yui907
Posts: 12
Joined: Mon May 22, 2017 12:55 pm
Location: Yorkshire, United Kingdom
Contact:

Re: Yui907's Journal [with Videos and Images]

Post: # 21883Post Yui907
Sat May 27, 2017 8:28 pm

I suppose I'll start by catching you up on my colony's origin story.

Image
A Company - The Early Days

I originally got two Messor barbarus queens with no brood.
My my mother seemed interested and took one queen and we decided to see who could get 100 ants the fastest. We called my nest "Alpha Company" and hers "Bravo Company" (A/Alpha Coy/Company, variants aren't important).
Image
B Company

My mother is Thai and gloated at length about how she'd be better at raising ants from watching their behavior in Asia as a child. (She was very poor. Watching ants qualifies as entertainment.)

Within 24 hours her ant queen had died.

Image
B Company - Loss of colony - Regicide

She'd decided to use dirt from the garden and a fish tank as her nest and placed it in the greenhouse, hoping the additional temperature would make the queen lay eggs faster. We'll never know what killed the queen. Was it being cooked alive or was it the nest of spiders she'd inadvertently placed in the tank. This, of course led to a meme.
Image


The 'disestablishment' of "B Company" worried me, thinking I'd make some kind of similar mistake, but over the next few months all went quite well for me. The Queen's first collection of tiny brood were born with no notable complications. I offered them a cricket leg early on (population of 10), but they rejected it and preferred to fast.
When the population reached 20 they started to accept protein and the tiniest of dandelion seeds (now a lifetime favorite).

Time passed, the girlfriend complained at length,
Image
A Company - Welcome to Alpha

Then she complained louder,
Image
A Company - Alpha after it's first non-dismembered protien

And then she stopped bothering complaining and now I have a wonderful healthy semi-mature colony of Harvester Ants. I've experimented plenty with different seeds and protein. (Spoiler, they don't like mealworms.)
Image
A Company - Happy Birthday, Alpha!

Temperature monitoring and heat mats were (carefully) added and hibernation took place in the winter.
Image
A Company - Temperature monitor (Cost:99p)
And that, roughly, brings us to the present day.

The colony will accept larger seeds now such as flax, sesame and linseed, but their preference is still for small seeds like dandelion for some reason. Given the opportunity, the colony will overstock the granaries considerably with small seeds

Here's some close ups of the garbage area (mostly seed coat and testa) and one of the granaries from a few months ago.
Image
A Company - Flax Granary (Understocked)

Image
A Company - Flax Granary (Understocked)

Image
A Company - Garbage heap (seed coat and other testa)

Finally, here are some up-to-date pictures of a nursery and a granary.
Image
A Company - Typical Granary (Containing: Dandelion, flax and niger seeds, in addition to a stick insect egg in the lower right corner.)

Image
A Company - Typical Nursery
Nests:
Messor barbarus - 1 Year, population: ~150 (27/05/2017)

Equipment:
Omninest Vertical Small
http://www.AntsCanada.com/shop/omni-nest-vertical-small/

My journal:
http://forum.AntsCanada.com/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=3374

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