Carpenter Ant Formicarium

Show us your formicariums and ant setup, ask formicarium-related questions, or share your experiences with building an ant home. Here you will also find formicarium requirements for specific ant species.

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PupHadrian
Posts: 9
Joined: Sat Feb 10, 2018 7:41 pm
Location: Port Huron
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Carpenter Ant Formicarium

Post: # 33918Post PupHadrian
Sat Feb 10, 2018 8:04 pm

Ok, so I'm legally blind. I have very low vision. I can see the large ants, like carpenter ants with magnification. I can see them...well, as fuzzy smudges without. I plan on capturing some queens at my uncle's place when the nuptial flights should start. I'll be using my younger cousins to help me out.

I wanted to save up and buy the kit from A.C. for carpenter ants, but I wanted to try and have some living plants or moss. I'm worried they'll decide to nest in the dirt and not the nest box? Can I use aquarium gravel? I'd have to settle for fake plants then. I want a substrate they won't move into, but I can see enough of where I need to clean. Plus, I kind of like the idea of aquarium gravel since I could get a brighter color and see my big black ants against easily. The smaller gravel wouldn't crush them, will it?

I know I have a lot more research to do, but I'm pretty confident that once I get my colony started, I can do this.
Port Huron, MI
1 Camponotus Novaebranoracensis Small Colony
1 Lasius Niger Queen

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Jadeninja9
Posts: 735
Joined: Tue Feb 14, 2017 9:00 pm
Location: SF Bay Area, California

Re: Carpenter Ant Formicarium

Post: # 33920Post Jadeninja9
Sat Feb 10, 2018 8:56 pm

You could do bright aquarium gravel with fake plants. I don't think the smaller gravel would crush the plants.
Keeper of:
1x Camponotus Hyatti
7x Lasius alienus colonies

Founding:
1x Prenolepis imparis queen
1x Tetramorium immigrans
1x Camponotus cf. clarithorax

PupHadrian
Posts: 9
Joined: Sat Feb 10, 2018 7:41 pm
Location: Port Huron
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Re: Carpenter Ant Formicarium

Post: # 33922Post PupHadrian
Sun Feb 11, 2018 1:22 am

Thank you! I'm pretty excited for next month, when nuptial flights should start. I know this will go better than my many childhood ant farms. Most of them escaped and the one gel one I had, I felt so terrible when I learned how bad they are for ants.

Plus, with these farms, if I accidentally bump it, they won't get caved into their tunnels. I need to find out if we have a club, group or something out here involving ant keepers. I'll see if the librarian can tell me anything.
Port Huron, MI
1 Camponotus Novaebranoracensis Small Colony
1 Lasius Niger Queen

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Jadeninja9
Posts: 735
Joined: Tue Feb 14, 2017 9:00 pm
Location: SF Bay Area, California

Re: Carpenter Ant Formicarium

Post: # 33926Post Jadeninja9
Sun Feb 11, 2018 1:39 am

Haha yeah, those kid ant farms really suck. Good luck with nuptial flights!
Keeper of:
1x Camponotus Hyatti
7x Lasius alienus colonies

Founding:
1x Prenolepis imparis queen
1x Tetramorium immigrans
1x Camponotus cf. clarithorax

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Jadeninja9
Posts: 735
Joined: Tue Feb 14, 2017 9:00 pm
Location: SF Bay Area, California

Re: Carpenter Ant Formicarium

Post: # 33928Post Jadeninja9
Sun Feb 11, 2018 1:52 am

If you go to the recent posts in active topics, there's a really long thread about queen sightings in your state and surrounding states
Keeper of:
1x Camponotus Hyatti
7x Lasius alienus colonies

Founding:
1x Prenolepis imparis queen
1x Tetramorium immigrans
1x Camponotus cf. clarithorax

CherrieEvolved
Posts: 56
Joined: Fri Aug 25, 2017 7:39 am
Location: Seattle

Re: Carpenter Ant Formicarium

Post: # 34015Post CherrieEvolved
Fri Feb 16, 2018 9:27 am

Dont put too much in the outworld, as they will bring dirt back into their nest. However if you are fine with that, awesome. You will just need to get another nest so they can move back and forth when one gets old/moldy.
Best way to keep them from moving into the outworld is to have bright light always shining on it, and keep the lid on the carpenter ant formicarium the majority of the time.

I do want to, at somepoint, do a natural nest with plants and such. As of now I just want to see them. You will lose alot of that ability giving them natural plants and such.

GL on your journey! Ants should be out when its above 65 degrees. Nuptial flights are between March-Oct for the most part. Most queens come out on a dry day after a rain storm! I found carpenter ant queens in July and in Sept in Washington State.
Keeper of:
Formica Sp
Myrmica Sp

Founding:
4x Formica Sp
1x Camponotus Sp

PupHadrian
Posts: 9
Joined: Sat Feb 10, 2018 7:41 pm
Location: Port Huron
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Re: Carpenter Ant Formicarium

Post: # 34093Post PupHadrian
Tue Feb 20, 2018 11:09 pm

Thank you. I have a few different ideas now. I wonder if I could get a container like the crappy kiddy type ant farms, or have help making a box like that from clear acrylic, where I could mash up and pack it full of wood pulp/rotten wood and let them dig their own tunnels, but still see them. I'd just have to figure out how to keep part of it moist, so I could cover part of the front and back walls of my old aquarium with these boxes. Have slots fitted in where I could flip one box upside down so nothing gets into the slot for it, fill the outworld bit with sand and a layer of gravel. I need some acrylic panels, aquarium silicone and finer mesh for the reptile lid I have. Then I could use fake plants.

Will acrylic adhere to glass with aquarium silicone?
Port Huron, MI
1 Camponotus Novaebranoracensis Small Colony
1 Lasius Niger Queen

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