So since the last update the colony has slowly been going down hill. The fungus in the main tank shrank to nothing and the ants were using it as a dump. Although there was still plenty of fungus in the tubes. The last couple of weeks the ants have refused to cut any leaves and the fungus in the tubes also started to shrink. I decided to empty out all the fungus into the foraging tank to find no queen apart from two alates and no larvae or pupae. What i thought was the original queen dying, was. At this point i decided to euthanize the colony. So sad……
So they had a whole section of my cupboard just for their loo so today i have moved it next to the fungus but in it’s own little box. I connected it to the hole i made for the data logger which is now redundant until i can drill another hole to fit it back in. To be honest it was an impulse buy and not really needed.
So the sliding doors in the foraging tank, as i thought would be a problem at feeding time. Yes they all come piling out, GRRRR. I need to think of something else. Moat theme is probably going to be next, this will be easier to heat aswel when it gets colder in my house as winter approaches.
I haven’t seen any alates recently, they appear to have all finally demised.
To find that the ants have built their fungus in the tubes during the heat spell and that the main fungus has again shrunk considerably. I had given them 23 large Blackberry leaves, obe apple cut in half and an orange cut in half. Most had gone. At least this year there were no escapes 🙂 I have also spotted a dying queen in the tube, unusually this one was being attended to by some of the tiniest castes which i have not seen before. I am hoping this isn’t the original queen.
As for the fungus in the tubes, i am going to leave it. I think when it cools down the ants will take it back to the main fungus tank. We will see.
This queen died, i really hope it’s not “THE QUEEN”
Just a reminder to oneself, CHECK THE ELBOW JOINTS. I wondered why there were traffic jams lately and discovered a huge blockage in one of the elbows . There was a plaster, god knows how that got there which was only allowing ants with small leaves to pass. Bigger leaves were being dropped and left. Anyway all clear now. 🙂
The new forage tank has been a god send. So much easier to deal with and i wished i had done this ages ago. The fungus is also doing so much better which i think has only happened since raising the temps a while back.
The old forage tank has become a chore as i need to keep branches/stems well between the sides and not touching the top as this just provides another escape route. It’s also very time consuming replacing the leaves trying to separate the ants before throwing out the old. I have given then my old dart frog tank, 45 x 45 x 60 cm high. I can see that the sliding doors will probably give me some problems later as numbers rise but for now i can easily give them taller branches. Replacing forage will be easier too as i can replace one pot at a time as they finish . I should also be able to give them enough forage to last while i go on holiday next month.
The tank is connected by a 3 foot tube via a T section going to the old tank and up to the fungus tank. I will replace the old tank eventually but at the moment the dump is still there. I want that space for other ants.