Discuss keeping ants in here. Including what to feed them, hydration, development, disease and everything in between.
New members should post your questions in here.
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By Squimbles
Hey guys, just a quick question. I have three species of ants: Lasius Niger; Camponotus Ligniperdus; Messor Barbarus. I'm planning on hibernating them within the next month but I just wanted to know the most efficient way. Last year I struggled a lot with hibernating but managed to hibernate all 3 of my Lasius colonies and my Campo colony. Now, I have around 80 Lasius queens (planning on freeing some and selling others) and I wanted to know the best way to hibernate them altogether. Also, my Messor Barbarus colonies can only hibernate at 15 degrees Celsius minimum, so my shed here in the UK will be much too cold for them.

Should I triple wrap them in bubble wrap and place them in a box full of polystyrene, then place them in the shed?

As for my Lasius and Campo, should I put them all in one box and wrap them in bubble wrap and polystyrene too?
User avatar
By Cyrus01
Hi, i would like to know abit more about hibernation as well. I also have Lasius Niger and Messor Barbarus.
I have read 5 - 10 degrees for the Lasius and anything from not below 15 and between 12 - 15 degrees for the Messors.
I also read the the Messors only need 6 weeks of hibernation. So sorry not a lot of help there, but im sure someone can help. :-D
User avatar
By Serafine
Lasius niger needs 15°C or colder. They have an exogenic rhythm which means they will stop laying eggs at around October but need low temperatures to actually hibernate properly. If they're kept too warm (like 25°C) they will get confused and only raise few small workers over the course of the next year.

Messor barbarus have an endogenic rhythm which means they don't really care about the environment temperature and will rest anyway. Also since they are mediterranian ants they don't really hibernate but just show little activity - they're still mobile and can walk around if needed (unlike northern Camponotus which look dead and are entirely immobile during hibernation), they just react and move very slow. They can be hibernated in a colder room (15-18°C) without issues. How long they hibernate is basically determined by their internal clock, my Camponotus barbaricus (which come from the same area) have rested from mid November to early March last year - just keep an eye on them from February on, you gonna see when they start walking around in the arena.

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