The Timing of Nuptial Flights and Ant Behavior

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russbean

The Timing of Nuptial Flights and Ant Behavior

Post: # 2209Post russbean
Wed Aug 12, 2015 7:07 pm

My son noticed a large number of queen ants collecting near the corner of our house, so he quickly alerted me. The ants did not look like any ants that I have seen in our yard. It was like they were attracted there by a plant in the garden or a certain color, I don't know, but they were gathering and mating with males and spreading in all directions.

About ten feet down the drive, a colony or several colonies of small black ants were also having nuptial flights. Actually, I can't verify that they were actually flying because I never saw any fly off. The colonies were swarming, though. This was different because they are most often pretty docile when I observe them. Some of the newly mated queens from up the drive stumbled into these colonies. These queens were immediately swarmed, seized, and drug into the colony entrances.

I wonder if ant colony activity naturally increases when another species is flying so that they can collect prey in this fashion.

Camponotus

Re: The Timing of Nuptial Flights and Ant Behavior

Post: # 2604Post Camponotus
Wed Aug 19, 2015 12:11 pm

When ants are having nuptial flights (usually after rain), many species will fly at the same time. You were observing the gathering before flight, where the ants swarm over a territory to make a safe "take off" air strip for the queens and males. When the small black ants caught the queens from the other colony, they were trying to protect their queens, which were about to go into flight. In conclusion, The black ants were active to protect their queens as much as possible before their nuptial flight.

AntsDakota
Posts: 1153
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2018 4:22 pm
Location: South Dakota

Re: The Timing of Nuptial Flights and Ant Behavior

Post: # 35307Post AntsDakota
Sun Apr 22, 2018 6:38 pm

Yes, ants are vey defensive when it comes to nuptial flights.
"God made every kind of wild beasts and every kind of livestock and every kind of creeping things;" (including ants) "and God saw that it was good." Genesis 1:25

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