LoginRegister



Thread Rating:
  • 0 Vote(s) - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
My Ant Farms (Large photo warning!)
10-22-2014, 03:02 AM,
#1
Gratzkul Offline
New Member



Posts: 5
Threads: 1
Joined: 10-22-2014
Reputation: 0
My Ant Farms (Large photo warning!)
Hello everyone! I've been lurking around here for some time and now feel that I should contribute to the forum. I have been keeping ants as pets on and off for over 15 years. Currently, I have about 30 colonies under my care. All of which were started from a single queen. Not many people know that queen ants can live to be upwards of 20 years old! In their lifetime, they lay thousands if not hundreds of thousands of eggs, depending on the species.

This is a complete species list of those I am currently keeping.

Camponotus pennsylvanicus
Camponotus nearcticus
Camponotus novaeboracensis
Formica pallidefulva
Formica subsericea
Formica integra
Pheidole bicarinata
Tetramorium caespitum
Lasius neoniger
Lasius flavus
Aphaenogaster fulva
Aphaenogaster rudis
Stigmatomma pallipes
Myrmica sp. (unidentified at the species level)
Myrmica sp. (unidentified at the species level)
Dorymyrmex bicolor
Crematogaster lineolata


I would love to share more photos and videos if people have interest in seeing them. Ants are somewhat of a passion of mine.

To feed them, I raise meal worms as a feeder insect. I'd like to start a colony of Dubia roaches as well. Additionally, I use a protein/sugar mix which I buy from a company out of North Carolina.

All of my formicaria (ant farms) are professional grade manufactured by Tar Heel Ants. None of which allow the ants to dig, which is very important when raising ants. Most ant farms people are used to will kill the occupants with mold. Gel farms and other Uncle Milton farms are absolutely horrible for raising ants. I would compare it to raising fish in a water glass filled with mud water.

Without further ado, here are a few photos! Until next time, enjoy!

http://i281.photobucket.com/albums/kk227...5cb27f.jpg

http://i281.photobucket.com/albums/kk227...3910699844

http://i281.photobucket.com/albums/kk227...3910758108

http://i281.photobucket.com/albums/kk227...3910824073

The last photo is a Formica pallidefulva queen helping her newest daughter out of her cacoon.
Find all posts by this user
Quote this message in a reply
10-22-2014, 11:10 AM,
#2
kfander Offline
Member

***


Posts: 104
Threads: 5
Joined: 09-30-2014
Reputation: 0
RE: My Ant Farms (Large photo warning!)
I'm impressed. Those are some beautiful photos you've got. I have trouble picturing ants as pets, but I cannot help but be impressed with the quality of the photos you've presented.
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Quote this message in a reply
10-23-2014, 06:14 AM,
#3
cyberpuppet Offline
Junior Member

**


Posts: 61
Threads: 7
Joined: 09-28-2014
Reputation: 0
RE: My Ant Farms (Large photo warning!)
I have considered starting an ant colony myself. When I was a child I found instructions for making a "nest" using plaster of paris and various bits and pieces to create interlocking chambers and an "outside" bit which could be topped with a piece of glass and black clothe over all the bits except "outside"
I think that are understanding has come on since then with much better habitats.
Find all posts by this user
Quote this message in a reply
10-24-2014, 10:37 AM,
#4
Gratzkul Offline
New Member



Posts: 5
Threads: 1
Joined: 10-22-2014
Reputation: 0
RE: My Ant Farms (Large photo warning!)
Thank you for the kind words, kfander! I would be happy to show some of my more recent photographs.

Cyberpuppet, you can most definitely create nests out of plaster. However, plaster nests are prone to rapid mold growth and require replacement fairly regularly. I'm quite busy during the day so I find the convenience of purchasing pre-made formicarium to work better for me. The prices vary greatly so there's really something for everyone.

As for the question on whether or not ants make good pets, I must say that they are one of the most interesting creatures I have observed. I donated one of my ant farms to a 3rd grade classroom last year and was pleasantly surprised with the interest shown. The children made handmade cards and sent them to me with all sorts of neat facts they learned while caring for the colony. My own children are quite taken by the ants as well! The wife is another story... Gen068
Find all posts by this user
Quote this message in a reply
11-03-2014, 11:53 PM,
#5
Gratzkul Offline
New Member



Posts: 5
Threads: 1
Joined: 10-22-2014
Reputation: 0
RE: My Ant Farms (Large photo warning!)
Hey everyone! I made a new video showing the steps I take when setting up a new ant farm and moving ants into it. Not sure if it is entirely relevant here, but I figured I'd show it just so you folks can have a better understanding about my ants and how I raise them. I have a handful of other videos on my channel as well, if you're interested in seeing them.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pe1Bo9KY...e=youtu.be
Find all posts by this user
Quote this message in a reply
11-04-2014, 05:53 AM,
#6
cyberpuppet Offline
Junior Member

**


Posts: 61
Threads: 7
Joined: 09-28-2014
Reputation: 0
RE: My Ant Farms (Large photo warning!)
One thing I have often wondered about starting a colony is if it would be possible to just catch one of the "flying ants" when they swarm. I dont know about elsewhere but in the UK in the middle of summer you get evenings when there are just millions of flying ants. Lots of people think they are a separate independent species but as I understand it they are the new queens and males from established nests flying up to mate then the queens return to earth to establish new nests. If that is the case then surely it would be possible to start a colony by catching one of the newly landed queens (can be identified because they shed their wings)?
Find all posts by this user
Quote this message in a reply
11-05-2014, 01:10 AM,
#7
Gratzkul Offline
New Member



Posts: 5
Threads: 1
Joined: 10-22-2014
Reputation: 0
RE: My Ant Farms (Large photo warning!)
That is exactly how I start my colonies. Rather than destroy a mature colony in an attempt to find a queen, I just wait for them to come to me! Those massive swarms you see are most likely Lasius niger (Black garden ant) or one of the other more common Lasius species. All of which are very friendly for new ant-keepers to try! All you need to get started is some container preferably a test tube with water in half of it, blocked with a cotton ball. Even a tupperware container with a water source would work. I'd highly recommend giving it a try. Once you start, you can't stop! Gotta catch 'em all!
Find all posts by this user
Quote this message in a reply
11-07-2014, 09:26 PM,
#8
cyberpuppet Offline
Junior Member

**


Posts: 61
Threads: 7
Joined: 09-28-2014
Reputation: 0
RE: My Ant Farms (Large photo warning!)
I must admit I am getting tempted - I do find the hive organization fascinating and love watching the bee displays when they have the glass hive type thing where you can see the queen laying and the workers doing all their different jobs.
I have a love/hate relationship with ants - when they are outside or in a proper display they fascinate me, when I find them in the food cupboard they give me the creeps and I hate them.
Find all posts by this user
Quote this message in a reply
11-13-2014, 10:56 AM,
#9
Gratzkul Offline
New Member



Posts: 5
Threads: 1
Joined: 10-22-2014
Reputation: 0
RE: My Ant Farms (Large photo warning!)
People who know of my hobby like to squish ants in front of me expecting me to get upset. I'm the first person with a spray bottle of Windex when those little jerks have a trail to my pantry. Shock and awe is my favorite strategy. Not sure if it is ok to post here, but I just put a video out of me moving a colony into one of my new ant farms, if you're interested in seeing it.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pe1Bo9KYStA
Find all posts by this user
Quote this message in a reply


Possibly Related Threads...
Thread Author Replies Views Last Post
  Have you created many insect farms? Mantis 17 4,531 02-25-2013, 06:20 AM
Last Post: 4sweed
  Ant Farm laurasav 12 4,225 09-16-2012, 10:17 AM
Last Post: Msmonkeyfeet

Forum Jump:


Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)


Contact Us | Pets Keepers Guide | Return to Top | | Lite (Archive) Mode | RSS Syndication| Rules & Privacy | Advertise Here