PLEASE HELP

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Zacharous
Posts: 15
Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2018 11:53 am
Location: California

PLEASE HELP

Post: # 50873Post Zacharous
Wed Sep 19, 2018 12:31 pm

Alright guys i'm completely at a loss here.

I have a camponotus fragilis queen with some workers in a test tube inside of a very small (pencil case) sized container with ventilation. I got the species from a GAN farmer in LA who has been doing this for many years. I got them about 3 weeks ago and everything seemed fine until i noticed yesterday upon coming home from school that almost all of the workers were on their backs struggling to get back on their feet. i noticed one of the 8 total workers doing this the night before, i thought it was just an old ant coming to it's end but now almost all of them were doing this. I contacted the seller of these girls and he said it sounds like poisoning. I removed all food (100% raw honey & leftover mealworm bits), removed the setup from my closet, and moved them to a different part of the room. About 20 mins go by and they all were back on their feet accept the one that started doing this the first time, she passed away. The rest of the day went by and no more weird ant disorientation. The next morning two more had died and 2 more were on their backs about to die. I removed the honey (which it sounds to me this is the problem) and they're still on their backs.

I have no idea what I'm doing wrong. I'm thoroughly following the care sheet which was provided, I'm using a Zoo Med heating cable like the one on Tarheel Ants. They're being stored in a dark area as well. I have no idea what to do here guys. Any help would be great!

JoeHostile1
Posts: 409
Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2018 6:51 am
Location: Canada
Contact:

Re: PLEASE HELP

Post: # 50885Post JoeHostile1
Wed Sep 19, 2018 2:07 pm

The fact that you moved them from the closed closet and then they all stood up again makes me think something is toxic in their environment, but they are better able to cope with it when moved to fresh air. Things like paint, glue, sealant, caulking, silicone anything like that at all in their setup?

Possibly the heating cable is cooking them? Could be less heat once you removed them from the confines of the closet which could explain why they temporarily recovered. How do you have it set up?

Are the eggs, larvae and pupae dying too? Do any of them look black or shrivelled up?

Is there any mold inside the test tube from bug/egg/larvae Carcasses or on the cotton.

Is there mold or any spores growing or coming out of the workers that died?
Keeping:
Tetramorium immigrans * Lasius Neoniger * Lasius Claviger * Messor Aciculatus * Myrmica Rubra * Camponotus Novaeboracensis * Camponotus Turkastanus * Pheidole Pallidula

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCSfFtn6RegZ3F1NdS1g08NA

Zacharous
Posts: 15
Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2018 11:53 am
Location: California

Re: PLEASE HELP

Post: # 50899Post Zacharous
Wed Sep 19, 2018 2:16 pm

JoeHostile1 wrote:
Wed Sep 19, 2018 2:07 pm
The fact that you moved them from the closed closet and then they all stood up again makes me think something is toxic in their environment, but they are better able to cope with it when moved to fresh air. Things like paint, glue, sealant, caulking, silicone anything like that at all in their setup?

Possibly the heating cable is cooking them? Could be less heat once you removed them from the confines of the closet which could explain why they temporarily recovered. How do you have it set up?

Are the eggs, larvae and pupae dying too? Do any of them look black or shrivelled up?

Is there any mold inside the test tube from bug/egg/larvae Carcasses or on the cotton.

Is there mold or any spores growing or coming out of the workers that died?
That's what I'm thinking. I'm in the process of moving them to my mom's office down the street to test and see if something in my house is causing this. We got a mold check recently so it can't be mold. No other types of materials you listed are anywhere near them, heating cable is used by the GAN farmer i purchased them from. So i'm running out of options here. It;s most likely something toxic in the environment like you said

JoeHostile1
Posts: 409
Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2018 6:51 am
Location: Canada
Contact:

Re: PLEASE HELP

Post: # 50936Post JoeHostile1
Wed Sep 19, 2018 5:08 pm

By something toxic in their envirement I meant something in the immediate vicinity of their setup. I highly doubt the air in your house is poisoning them. If there’s nothing toxic near them then I bet it’s the heating cable. Just because the Gan farmer uses one doesn’t mean you’re using it the same way, or for the same lengths of time.

The heating cable isn’t nessasary just so you know. The benefit of using one is that brood develops faster. So a Camponotus species egg to worker might take 6 weeks of development instead of 8 weeks. The risk is that you kill your ants.

The reason I asked about mold in the test tube is because certain types can kill the colony.

The reason I asked if there’s spores coming out of the dead workers is because they can be infected with a deadly fungus.
Keeping:
Tetramorium immigrans * Lasius Neoniger * Lasius Claviger * Messor Aciculatus * Myrmica Rubra * Camponotus Novaeboracensis * Camponotus Turkastanus * Pheidole Pallidula

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCSfFtn6RegZ3F1NdS1g08NA

Zacharous
Posts: 15
Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2018 11:53 am
Location: California

Re: PLEASE HELP

Post: # 50939Post Zacharous
Wed Sep 19, 2018 5:11 pm

JoeHostile1 wrote:
Wed Sep 19, 2018 5:08 pm
By something toxic in their envirement I meant something in the immediate vicinity of their setup. I highly doubt the air in your house is poisoning them. If there’s nothing toxic near them then I bet it’s the heating cable. Just because the Gan farmer uses one doesn’t mean you’re using it the same way, or for the same lengths of time.

The heating cable isn’t nessasary just so you know. The benefit of using one is that brood develops faster. So a Camponotus species egg to worker might take 6 weeks of development instead of 8 weeks. The risk is that you kill your ants.

The reason I asked about mold in the test tube is because certain types can kill the colony.

The reason I asked if there’s spores coming out of the dead workers is because they can be infected with a deadly fungus.
What do these spores look like?

JoeHostile1
Posts: 409
Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2018 6:51 am
Location: Canada
Contact:

Re: PLEASE HELP

Post: # 50940Post JoeHostile1
Wed Sep 19, 2018 5:21 pm

Just any kind of weird looking fungus growing on the dead ant. Not like a green mold because that will happen to any dead insect if it sits in the test tube too long.
Keeping:
Tetramorium immigrans * Lasius Neoniger * Lasius Claviger * Messor Aciculatus * Myrmica Rubra * Camponotus Novaeboracensis * Camponotus Turkastanus * Pheidole Pallidula

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCSfFtn6RegZ3F1NdS1g08NA

Zacharous
Posts: 15
Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2018 11:53 am
Location: California

Re: PLEASE HELP

Post: # 50943Post Zacharous
Wed Sep 19, 2018 5:35 pm

JoeHostile1 wrote:
Wed Sep 19, 2018 5:21 pm
Just any kind of weird looking fungus growing on the dead ant. Not like a green mold because that will happen to any dead insect if it sits in the test tube too long.
I use my 5x magnifying glass to inspect these guys. They just look like dead ants, nothing special, legs inward. The next one that i suspect is on it's way to this weird "on it's back flailing" state is far from the nest, away from the rest of the workers, walking slowly in weird shaped circles, kind of like a zombie, rather feral to be honest. It's odd because when I removed them from the closet originally after seeing them like this they all went back to normal, as if nothing but me removing them solved the problem. They've been in a completely different room today. There hasn't been any use of a heating cable today either. Should I remove the queen in hopes of this virus killing off the workers, and completely sanitize the test tube/formicarium? I really don't want this to get any worse, as it seem like some kind of virus or fungus screwing with their brain.

Zacharous
Posts: 15
Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2018 11:53 am
Location: California

Re: PLEASE HELP

Post: # 50944Post Zacharous
Wed Sep 19, 2018 5:43 pm

JoeHostile1 wrote:
Wed Sep 19, 2018 5:21 pm
Just any kind of weird looking fungus growing on the dead ant. Not like a green mold because that will happen to any dead insect if it sits in the test tube too long.
Please get back to me when you can, I'm not sure how much time they have left.

JoeHostile1
Posts: 409
Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2018 6:51 am
Location: Canada
Contact:

Re: PLEASE HELP

Post: # 50945Post JoeHostile1
Wed Sep 19, 2018 6:01 pm

Zacharous wrote:
Wed Sep 19, 2018 5:35 pm

Should I remove the queen in hopes of this virus killing off the workers, and completely sanitize the test tube/formicarium? I really don't want this to get any worse, as it seem like some kind of virus or fungus screwing with their brain.
Gee man I’m not sure. I’m trying to think what I would do if this was happening to me. I would definitely stop using the heating cable for the time being to try and rule that out. And I would have done everything you have already done; clean the setup, swap out the food, move location of the nest, turn off the heating cable. Would I separate the queen from the workers? No I would not do that. You could try moving them into a fresh test tube and see if that helps.

It’s possible the damage to these workers is already done and you already solved the initial problem, but it could be too late for this batch of worker ants. As long as the queen is fine you may be ok. That’s why I was asking if she has healthy eggs/larvae?
Keeping:
Tetramorium immigrans * Lasius Neoniger * Lasius Claviger * Messor Aciculatus * Myrmica Rubra * Camponotus Novaeboracensis * Camponotus Turkastanus * Pheidole Pallidula

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCSfFtn6RegZ3F1NdS1g08NA

Zacharous
Posts: 15
Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2018 11:53 am
Location: California

Re: PLEASE HELP

Post: # 50946Post Zacharous
Wed Sep 19, 2018 6:09 pm

JoeHostile1 wrote:
Wed Sep 19, 2018 6:01 pm
Zacharous wrote:
Wed Sep 19, 2018 5:35 pm

Should I remove the queen in hopes of this virus killing off the workers, and completely sanitize the test tube/formicarium? I really don't want this to get any worse, as it seem like some kind of virus or fungus screwing with their brain.
Gee man I’m not sure. I’m trying to think what I would do if this was happening to me. I would definitely stop using the heating cable for the time being to try and rule that out. And I would have done everything you have already done; clean the setup, swap out the food, move location of the nest, turn off the heating cable. Would I separate the queen from the workers? No I would not do that. You could try moving them into a fresh test tube and see if that helps.

It’s possible the damage to these workers is already done and you already solved the initial problem, but it could be too late for this batch of worker ants. As long as the queen is fine you may be ok. That’s why I was asking if she has healthy eggs/larvae?
I'm willing to seperate the workers from the queen even if they may all die. I guess what i'm asking is; would the queen survive being away from the workers? No, the larvae are completely white. Theres probably 10 pupa in there. I'd rather all the "Infected" or "Injured" workers die off while the queen survives. If it is a bacterial problem then logically the best thing to do would be to seperate the infected from the non-infected. as far as i know the queen is the only one thats acting normal.

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