Help in identification of ant queen and general questions.

Help with identifying the species your ants

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CrazyJewels
Posts: 5
Joined: Mon Apr 02, 2018 3:17 am
Location: Auckland

Help in identification of ant queen and general questions.

Post: # 34902Post CrazyJewels
Fri Apr 06, 2018 5:39 pm

Hello Ant lovers!
I am new to ant keeping and need help identifying my very first queen! (see link below)
I have caught this queen a few months ago (1-2 months ago) here in Auckland, New Zealand (in the city centre, son't know if that info helps). It took a while to lay its eggs, I lost hope and thought it was a major worker after a month of waiting. It is around 7mm long and very dark black in colour (so I don't think it is an Argentine queen which are big pests here in NZ and so I would not be allowed to keep this colony). I'm hoping it's a native species!

Here are the photos:
https://imgur.com/a/QBdNi - Sorry for the bad quality photos, I can't seem to get closer to the ant without my camera getting all blurry

FYI, the ant queen is in a 15mL falcon tube, and the distance from the 4mL mark to the 7mL mark is 2cm.

I'd like to know if it's fully claustral or not (I gave it a drop of honey ages ago and wanted to know if I should give it a bit of uncooked egg yolk or egg white).

Also you may notice the pathetic amount of water I managed to have in that tube (because of the panic when trying to create a test tube setup for the first time and trying to get the queen comfortable as quickly as possible), is that a problem? The quantity of water has not decreased over the last month or so, I'm unsure if I pushed enough to have moisture coming out of the other end of the cotton ball but she has survived this long and I see her climbing on the cotton ball and staying there for a while sometimes (I keep her in the dark all week and only peek at her once every week). If the lack of water is a problem, is it safe to transfer the queen into another falcon tube even though she has laid eggs? Will shining a light on (or just uncovering) the old test tube to make her move to a new one stress her out too much? She might eat her eggs?

Thanks in advance for all the help!

CrazyJewels
Posts: 5
Joined: Mon Apr 02, 2018 3:17 am
Location: Auckland

Re: Help in identification of ant queen and general questions.

Post: # 34942Post CrazyJewels
Mon Apr 09, 2018 5:54 am

Update: New photos

https://imgur.com/a/QBdNi

Closer up and less blurry, can anyone help me identify the ant please?

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antnest8
Posts: 777
Joined: Tue Jan 02, 2018 2:11 pm
Location: Detroit, MI

Re: Help in identification of ant queen and general questions.

Post: # 34950Post antnest8
Mon Apr 09, 2018 2:23 pm

here i narrowed it down to these geneses (note: info comes from antmaps)
most likely:
Nylanderia
Iridomyrmex
less likely:
Dolichoderus
Prolasius
Monomorium
keeper of
1 lasius umbratus
8 tetremorium queens
3 C. pennsylvanicus
3 C novaeboracensis
1 tapinoma sessile colony

CrazyJewels
Posts: 5
Joined: Mon Apr 02, 2018 3:17 am
Location: Auckland

Re: Help in identification of ant queen and general questions.

Post: # 34977Post CrazyJewels
Tue Apr 10, 2018 7:51 am

antnest8 wrote:
Mon Apr 09, 2018 2:23 pm
here i narrowed it down to these geneses (note: info comes from antmaps)
most likely:
Nylanderia
Iridomyrmex
less likely:
Dolichoderus
Prolasius
Monomorium
Wow! Thanks for the help antnest8!
Would closer photos of the ant help in the identification?

Also, I've tried making her change tube because there was no more water in the first, both tubes are now taped together but she's not moving closer to the new tube, how long can she last in the closed environment of the 2 taped tubes before she runs out of oxygen to breath? Is there a way to gently ask her to move to the new tube (like shining a light on the first tube but is that safe to do while she has her eggs)?

Thanks again! =D

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antnest8
Posts: 777
Joined: Tue Jan 02, 2018 2:11 pm
Location: Detroit, MI

Re: Help in identification of ant queen and general questions.

Post: # 34982Post antnest8
Tue Apr 10, 2018 2:38 pm

i good way to get her air is to poke small holes in the tape
keeper of
1 lasius umbratus
8 tetremorium queens
3 C. pennsylvanicus
3 C novaeboracensis
1 tapinoma sessile colony

Hitch3
Posts: 93
Joined: Fri Jan 26, 2018 1:36 am
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia
Contact:

Re: Help in identification of ant queen and general questions.

Post: # 34995Post Hitch3
Tue Apr 10, 2018 5:26 pm

With the new photos, I can definitely say 110% that is an Iridomyrmex Bicknelli queen. I have a couple of queens and colony’s myself, so if you ever need any help or tips, just ask me! :D

Would you like some photos of my colony? :?:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCvjcyJWitRSztq51HziS0Dg

Keeping:
2x Iridomyrmex Bicknelli
2 x Nylanderia sp
Camponotus Consobrinus
Pheidole sp
Rhytidoponera metallica

Founding:
Pheidole sp
2x Cremogaster
12x Iridomyrmex Bicknelli
Polyarhis sp

CrazyJewels
Posts: 5
Joined: Mon Apr 02, 2018 3:17 am
Location: Auckland

Re: Help in identification of ant queen and general questions.

Post: # 35003Post CrazyJewels
Tue Apr 10, 2018 8:31 pm

antnest8 wrote:
Tue Apr 10, 2018 2:38 pm
i good way to get her air is to poke small holes in the tape
Thank you, I did, and it looks like she ate some of her eggs...
Hitch3 wrote:
Tue Apr 10, 2018 5:26 pm
With the new photos, I can definitely say 110% that is an Iridomyrmex Bicknelli queen. I have a couple of queens and colony’s myself, so if you ever need any help or tips, just ask me! :D

Would you like some photos of my colony? :?:
Thanks! But are you sure? I found it in Auckland NZ, and it seems to only be present in Australia?

I would LOVE to see some photos of your colony!
Does this species like a bit of glucose and protein added to their test tube setup? =D

Hitch3
Posts: 93
Joined: Fri Jan 26, 2018 1:36 am
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia
Contact:

Re: Help in identification of ant queen and general questions.

Post: # 35031Post Hitch3
Wed Apr 11, 2018 9:30 pm

Ok, well it seems I’m am not 110% sure on my identification of Iridomyrmex Bicknelli. :lol:

I am still almost positive that you queen has the look of the Iridomyrmex genus, but I don’t think it is Bicknelli. Based on information from this site ( www.antwiki.org/wiki/Iridomyrmex_species_by_Country#New_Zealand ), I would have to say that your colony is either:

Iridomyrmex suchieri
or...
Iridomyrmex rufoniger

Could you tell me the colour of the workers head? Is it black or is it more of a brownish colour?
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCvjcyJWitRSztq51HziS0Dg

Keeping:
2x Iridomyrmex Bicknelli
2 x Nylanderia sp
Camponotus Consobrinus
Pheidole sp
Rhytidoponera metallica

Founding:
Pheidole sp
2x Cremogaster
12x Iridomyrmex Bicknelli
Polyarhis sp

CrazyJewels
Posts: 5
Joined: Mon Apr 02, 2018 3:17 am
Location: Auckland

Re: Help in identification of ant queen and general questions.

Post: # 35034Post CrazyJewels
Thu Apr 12, 2018 2:03 am

Wrong alert, she has tons of eggs, all is well =D
Hitch3 wrote:
Wed Apr 11, 2018 9:30 pm
Ok, well it seems I’m am not 110% sure on my identification of Iridomyrmex Bicknelli. :lol:

I am still almost positive that you queen has the look of the Iridomyrmex genus, but I don’t think it is Bicknelli. Based on information from this site ( www.antwiki.org/wiki/Iridomyrmex_species_by_Country#New_Zealand ), I would have to say that your colony is either:

Iridomyrmex suchieri
or...
Iridomyrmex rufoniger

Could you tell me the colour of the workers head? Is it black or is it more of a brownish colour?
That website is great!
Unfortunately, right now I only have the queen and her eggs. How long until they hatch do you think? 1-2 months?
Browner colour would signify Iridomyrmex suchieri right? And blacker colour Iridomyrmex rufoniger?

It's great how both species can tend to honeydew producing hemiptera or aphids!! From the AntWiki source, I. rufoniger seems to have been "intercepted in NZ at the ports of Auckland and Freyberg, but the species has not yet become established in NZ". I was hoping I had caught the queen very far away from the Auckland port to make it easier to know which species it was but I caught the queen exactly 1km away (as the crow flies [straight line]) from the Auckland port, which is easily a flyable distance for an ant isn't it?

The queen has no brownish colour I'd say though if there is a notable difference between queens..

So how do I make this queen move test tubes? Do I uncover a side and expose it to sunlight so that she moves to the other test tube? Do I need to feed her some sugary substance and/or protein? Will the holes in the tape (done with a toothpick) be large enough to let the newborn ant workers escape??

I don't want to mess this up! Thanks a lot for all your help! =D

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antnest8
Posts: 777
Joined: Tue Jan 02, 2018 2:11 pm
Location: Detroit, MI

Re: Help in identification of ant queen and general questions.

Post: # 35035Post antnest8
Thu Apr 12, 2018 5:14 am

i would make the holes with mechanical pencil led since it is so small but just try to make them as small as you can ;)
keeper of
1 lasius umbratus
8 tetremorium queens
3 C. pennsylvanicus
3 C novaeboracensis
1 tapinoma sessile colony

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