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Messor orientalis (harvester ant)

: 12 mm (monogyn)
🐜: 3 – 10 mm (polymorf)
🍽️: seed + insects + oil seeds
💧: 50 – 60%
🌡️: 22 – 30°C
❄️: –

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Messor orientalis (harvester ant)

Description

Recommended for beginners. This species is easy to keep, claustral and monogynous (single queen). Both the queen and workers are uniformly ash black, their body is covered by hair. They dig their nests into the soil, typically under larger stones, and create several larger chambers for themselves. They prefer warm, sunny, open habitats.

Similar to other Messor species, this ant is also a seed collector. These harvester ants store various seeds in their tunnels and utilize them later. They tolerate dry conditions well, keep their environment clean, that makes them an ideal species for any type of ant farms. They can be kept in a relatively dry environment with a few watering spots, to prevent growth of mites. Messors accumulate their waste, usually in the warmest and driest corner of their enclosure. They are polymorphic, with three different-sized worker castes (minor, media, major).

The major workers are strong and resilient, can move larger seeds, hunt, chews through the tough exoskeleton of the prey. Minor workers are smaller, assist in raising of the brood and do other various tasks around the nest. Their stingers are underdeveloped, harmless to humans. They typically neutralize their prey with strong mandibles. They are not aggressive, but highly territorial, do not tolerate any other insects in their territory. Keep them in steady lighting conditions and protect them from vibrations because they are sensitive to them, cause long-term stress to the colony. They are active, and always busy, constantly doing something in the formicarium, that makes them fascinating to observe. Workers mainly look for food at ground level. The queen can have a lifespan of up to 20-25 years.

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

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

Hibernation: As an tropical ant species, they do not require hibernation.

Additional information

Weight 0.025 kg
Dimensions 16 × 1.6 × 1.6 cm
Tartási nehézség

Habitat

Államforma

Kolóniaméret

Dolgozó kasztok

Dolgozóméret

,

Élelemigény

Páraigény

Wintering

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