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Messor bouvieri

: 10 mm (monogyn)
🐜: 3 – 9 mm (polymorf)
🍽️: seeds + insects
💧: 50 – 70%
🌡️: 22 – 30°C
❄️: November – February (15°C)

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Messor bouvieri

Description

This species is recommended for beginners. It is an easily maintainable, monogynous (single-queen) seed collector ant (harvester ant). Both the queen and the workers are glossy black. They dig their nests into the soil, typically under larger stones, where they create several larger chambers for themselves. They prefer warm, sunny, open habitats.

They are seed collectors like other Messor species, they store various seeds in their tunnels, and utilize them later. This ants tolerate drought well, keep their enviroment clean, that makes them an ideal species for any type of formicariums. They can be kept in dry conditions with some watering spots to prevent the growth of mites. Messors accumulate waste, usually in the warmest and driest corner of the enclosure. This species is polymorphic, have three different-sized worker castes (minor, media, major). Major workers are strong and resilient, can move harder seeds, and hunt for prey.  Minor workers are smaller, they support the growth of brood and do other tasks around the nest. Their stingers are undeveloped and harmless to humans, they usually neutralize their prey with their strong mandibles. They are not particularly aggressive, but highly territorial, do not tolerate any other insects in their territory.

Keep them under stable lighting conditions and protect them from vibrations, because they are sensitive to it. Unsuitable conditions cause unnecessary stress to the colony. They are an active species, that makes them exciting to observe. Workers mainly looks for food at ground level. The expected lifespan of the queen can reach up to 20-25 years.

Food: Seeds (seed mix + oily seeds like walnuts or peanuts) and insects.

Reproduction: They reproduce rapidly in warm conditions. In the first year, they raise 40-70 workers, and by the second year, the colony may reach a few hundred workers. A mature colony consists of  several hundred workers. The offspring develop without pupa, so the pupal form is white and ant-shaped.

Hibernation: Mediterranean hibernation is recommended, from November to February at 15°C. For more information, check this video.

 

Additional information

Tartási nehézség

Habitat

Államforma

Kolóniaméret

Dolgozó kasztok

Dolgozóméret

Élelemigény

Páraigény

Wintering

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