Possible early Canadian flight

Where and when are you finding queen ants? A section to share nuptial flight schedules by ant species and locality

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ameablable
Posts: 10
Joined: Wed Jan 25, 2017 11:50 am
Location: Northern Ontario

Possible early Canadian flight

Post: # 21405Post ameablable
Sat May 20, 2017 6:40 am

This is not an ID request, antweb makes it pretty easy to ID ants in this region.

I went on a walk yesterday and came upon a queen ant.
I'm fairly certain it is Formica Podzolica as she looks right, she is the right size, and there isn't a whole lot of variety of species where I live. (see image)

There is a problem with this though, I live in Canada. Northern Ontario in a township near Thunder Bay.
Aren't Formica flights supposed to happen late July to August?
Heck it's only been spring weather for a week or so here, we even had a bit of snow two days ago.

So is this a a bizzaro world early flight?
Or do queens go through some hibernation period I don't know about?

Here is the best picture I could take without disturbing her.
Image

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Batspiderfish
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Location: Maine

Re: Possible early Canadian flight

Post: # 21406Post Batspiderfish
Sat May 20, 2017 6:45 am

Kinda looks like Lasius umbratus. Do you have a measurement?
If you enjoy my expertise and identifications, please do not put wild populations at risk of disease by releasing pet colonies. We are responsible to give our pets the best care we can manage for the rest of their lives.

ameablable
Posts: 10
Joined: Wed Jan 25, 2017 11:50 am
Location: Northern Ontario

Re: Possible early Canadian flight

Post: # 21408Post ameablable
Sat May 20, 2017 6:55 am

7mm long.
Less than 4 wide it's hard to tell

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Batspiderfish
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Location: Maine

Re: Possible early Canadian flight

Post: # 21409Post Batspiderfish
Sat May 20, 2017 7:01 am

That's definitely the right length for Lasius.

L. umbratus
is a social parasite, so if you could get clearer pictures (from farther away, if need be) then determining her identity will be important.
If you enjoy my expertise and identifications, please do not put wild populations at risk of disease by releasing pet colonies. We are responsible to give our pets the best care we can manage for the rest of their lives.

ameablable
Posts: 10
Joined: Wed Jan 25, 2017 11:50 am
Location: Northern Ontario

Re: Possible early Canadian flight

Post: # 21410Post ameablable
Sat May 20, 2017 7:05 am

Huh. Didn't know we even had its host Lasius Niger here though.

Here's a better picture.
Image

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Batspiderfish
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Joined: Wed Jun 29, 2016 3:47 pm
Location: Maine

Re: Possible early Canadian flight

Post: # 21411Post Batspiderfish
Sat May 20, 2017 9:31 am

I'm sorry, can we have better lighting too? More detail is important. More than one picture, from different angles (head, profile, top) would also help.

Lasius umbratus is studied to use a few species as host; in North America, namely Lasius alienus and Lasius neoniger. Not entirely sure this is what we have at this point, but I want a better look.
If you enjoy my expertise and identifications, please do not put wild populations at risk of disease by releasing pet colonies. We are responsible to give our pets the best care we can manage for the rest of their lives.

ameablable
Posts: 10
Joined: Wed Jan 25, 2017 11:50 am
Location: Northern Ontario

Re: Possible early Canadian flight

Post: # 21412Post ameablable
Sat May 20, 2017 9:38 am

Update: she layed an egg.
Here's a pic with better lighting.

Image


I'm leaving to go out of town till Monday so unfortunately I can't take anymore pictures.

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Batspiderfish
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Joined: Wed Jun 29, 2016 3:47 pm
Location: Maine

Re: Possible early Canadian flight

Post: # 21418Post Batspiderfish
Sat May 20, 2017 12:13 pm

Oh, cool! This is a Formica queen. It was hard to tell from the first pic. I'm guessing that either her nest was disrupted or she was part of a co-founding and became evicted.
If you enjoy my expertise and identifications, please do not put wild populations at risk of disease by releasing pet colonies. We are responsible to give our pets the best care we can manage for the rest of their lives.

ameablable
Posts: 10
Joined: Wed Jan 25, 2017 11:50 am
Location: Northern Ontario

Re: Possible early Canadian flight

Post: # 21422Post ameablable
Sat May 20, 2017 2:14 pm

Cool!
Is there any extra work involved taking care of an evicted queen?
Or can I treat her as a new queen?

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