Categories
Cataglyphis desertorum

Trophallaxis

Larvae and newly hatched ants. The large white lumps are pieces of chicken which they seem to enjoy and feed the larvae on. There seems to be mainly two ants that go out to forage together, i can tell because they both have damaged antennae.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uU0DnbGIFVs]

Trophallaxis

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Categories
Cataglyphis desertorum

My first kitten

Well here she is, the first adult to emerge from the cocoon after only 10 days, and only 15 days after i first saw the tiny larvae. She is a beautiful bright orange and looks like shes been designated to looking after the kids.

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The rest of the colony are still staying in the nest for most of the time but i am seeing more activity outside gradually. One annoying point is that they are using one of the nest chambers as their dump which may eventually attract mites. I can also see the empty cocoon on the tip from which the baby hatched.

Categories
Polyrhachis dives

Growing fast

The ants are continuing to grow in numbers and now estimate over 200 individuals, they have just about outgrown their arena, so i am going to try and hold them in a 45x45x45 exoterra. I have woven a basket nest made from clematis and i’m going to try and interwind this into some bamboo to give a natural effect ( pics to follow when completed. )
They are feeding well on meal worms and the pupae providing they attack them when first given otherwise they are ignored perhaps because they begin to take on the identity of the ants from their odour. The adult beetles are pretty much ignored. They will bring down adult crickets and roaches within 10 minutes.
Just for the record, i have’nt smelt any odours comming from the arena as pointed out in some threads of this species, even after proding the nest to try and gain a reaction. I just did a count using a photo and marked each one and got 273, probably counted some twice and a few dead ones but the ammount dosent include the ones in the nest.

The nest still on the plastic tub the ants arrived in.
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Categories
Messor barbarus

Trying to cool them down

I’m having problems lowering the temps much below 20 c where they are and the ants are still pretty active but mostly at night after lights out. I have now moved them onto a window sill which is about 15 c and will drop more, i just have to make sure its not to drastic. The ants are also getting a natural light cycle which should also help stimulate them to rest.

Categories
Cataglyphis desertorum

So fast

6 days ago i took pics of the new eggs and tiny larvae and today i’m taking pictures of large larvae and pupae. I know cataglyphis develop fast but not this fast. Although after the move from the package to the new nest i could see no sign of any brood and suddenly we are here.
The ants themselves have mostly stayed inside the nest and i sometimes see one ore two out drinking from the sugar/honey water so a little dissapointing visually but maybe perhaps because i’m not giving them heat from the top. I was hoping with the presence of larvae, may have made them more active . I still can’t see into the top tier of the nest very well but most of the ants stay at the bottom where it is warmer.
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I missed filming the large larvae here but you can just see some eggs and plenty of pupae..

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4MEhU7TuNaI]

Couldnt resist showing you just one more pic of the eggs larvae and pupae.

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The queen.
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Categories
Cataglyphis desertorum

Larvae

Not great pics but you can see the small larvae.
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Eggs and larvae.
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