The question here is what attracts sugar ants? You’ve probably encountered some of these ants before, they are the ants of the genus camponotus commonly known as sugar ants stay tuned to the end to get a satisfactory answer.
We have a fairly common species here in eastern Australia camponotus Annie Opelousas commonly known as golden-tailed sugar ants after the fine golden hairs, which cover their abdomens originally.
Research and Facts
My research revealed a sized acrylic nest which they quickly outgrew now, they’re living in this small size white almond paste and I’m doing really well and showing very little signs of slowing down their growth.
Currently the around a hundred workers. So not a massive Colony, but that’s still quite a significant number considering sugar and colonies tend to take much longer to develop than other ants mainly due to their larger than average body size generally speaking the larger the species of ant along the time it will take for the colony to mature for introducing the colony into the current home as an experiment.
I decided to add in a thin layer of sand covering the entire floor space the substrate layer like this isn’t essential for sugar ants but I felt it may give them a more natural feeling.
Stressed a sensitive brood upon and it also slightly help retain more humidity within the nest over time. I found this colony is quite sensitive to light.
So I usually keep this red shield on top to keep them relaxed whilst this transparent piece of acrylic does aline in and you can still clearly find them inside on each other. On the other hand don’t perceive the light and some among many other insects can’t see light waves within the Red Spectrum, so these ants is same pretty much pitch black under there.
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Sugar Ants Colony
This colony is also one of the most active sugar and so I think part of the reason I always see them so dizzy is the fact that this is a diurnal species of sugar and meaning they naturally do most of their foraging throughout the daylight hours, which is usually the time I check up on them being diurnal is kind of unusual for sure grants as most of the others are strictly nocturnal here. You can see the queen ant mother to the entire colony.
Sugar Ants Appearance
The sugar ant stands out quite clearly from the rest with her increased size and she also has far less golden hairs covering her abdomen. I find it quite hard to get a clear shot of her as the workers dutifully cluster around her and climb up against the edges of the nest creating a wall of ends and shading her from the light a good strategy for protecting her from being spotted by a potential Predator while they were at it some of the workers began forever.
Resisting their queen by keeping her clean they do so by grooming her with her mouth Parts doily saliva contains antimicrobial properties what here as she rolls over to be groomed kind of like a dog hoping for a belly rub looks like she’s enjoying that.
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Sugar Ants Behavior
Almost all animals spend much of their time cleaning themselves, but ants are one of the most hygienic living in such large numbers within confined and humid environments for them cleanliness is vitally important if neglected their entire colony could easily be overwhelmed by harmful bacterial and fungal outbreaks. So ants impulsively clean themselves and their fellow Colony members as thoroughly as they can.
Something us humans could learn a thing or two about but the sugar ants will just go out licking each other though soap and water suits us better. However, cleaning them with their mouthparts this habit not only helps scrape off and Destroy fungal spores, but also serves another important purpose once covered in the ants saliva.
This helps them through to retain their precious moisture and additionally makes the work of relocating and moving with food much easier instead of picking up and moving individually. They simply just pick up a pile at a time very useful if their net.
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Sugar Ants Habitat
They have wrapping around the base of the abdomen has its colonies quite special to me as it’s the first ever sugar and colony of race almost three years ago. Now I was walking through my local park and I was lucky enough to spot this queen.
She had just performed her nuptial flight and had shed her wings. I captured her up and moved her into a makeshift closer. All cell comprised of a water-filled test tube and plugged off and cotton few months later.
The first workers arrived and her colony was underway as they grew I introduce them to new nesting areas starting them out in a tube setup and gradually adding in additional test tubes as they needed them.
I hooked it up gave it some water and the Ants moved in almost immediately the Colony now had fresh new home and I now had a nice clear view of the ants with it fast forward several months later and the colony had doubled in size all seemed like it was going. Well the queen looked healthy and there was plenty of brood developing away.
The one I took a closer. Look I noticed a serious problem at first. I thought the Glass lid was just becoming a little grubby which inevitably happens over time.
Then I saw that underneath the cloudy lid parts of the nest floor had begun to darken into little grains blotchy patterns mold was starting to take hold as a result of the outbreak quite a few of the next generation of workers sadly didn’t develop properly emerging deformed and frail over the many years. I’ve been keeping out.
I found mold and other fungal outbreaks to be one of the most common causes of Connie’s collapsing. Usually the threat can be prevented by housing the ants in a relatively small nest which allows the colony to all fit in comfortably, but at the same time, I won’t allow for too much unoccupied space empty space within the nest often gets utilized by the hands as garbage sites where they’ll defecate Place their dead empty cocoons and food scraps given the In conditions within the ants nests this waste serves.
Perfect fuel for fungal growth. So it’s really important to carefully match the size of the colony with the size of the nest to ensure that the ants create garbage zones. Well away from the nest ideally within their foraging area admittedly.
The Nest that I built for this colony was originally a little too large for them and they actually did end up creating a small garbage site within the nest and one point which they later removed on their own and several. It’s on still living in the same nest.
They were well over due to be introduced to a new one. So for the colonies next time I thought I’d try an acrylic Nest. Yeah, I fucked it up using a t connector and I tried encouraging the colonies move by exposing their old nest to light and covering up a new one with another red shield to keep it nice and dark and I also attached up on water plug test tube to the spare entrance point to both.
Provide the nest with humidity and also off the answer convenient source of drinking water whenever they needed it. It didn’t take long for the ants to take an interest in the new nest but not all of the colony was so convinced with roughly half remaining behind the all-important queen included after living in this nest for so long. It seems these guys have grown quite attached to it.
After a couple of days of waiting with the colony still divided I thought they might need some extra incentive. So I decided to warm the new Nest up a little by running a heating cable underneath hands being cold-blooded animals.
They greatly attracted to warm up raising their body temperatures makes themselves much more productive and greatly accelerates the development of their growing young the same time too much heat can be a deterrent for the answer and potentially be fatal.
So you can see here that I’m only hitting the bottom half of the nest this way the colony has a temperature gradient to work with and can decide upon the most safe and comfortable spot to place themselves in their room with in just an hour to reluctant half of the colony finally decided it was time to move now.
I just need And to remove their old nest and hook them back up their foraging area a successful move. So despite how extremely clean these little animals are Uncle outbreaks still pose a significant ever-present threat. It’s a good thing that I discovered the signs of growth early if left alone much longer, it likely would have expanded wider throughout the nest.
What Attracts Sugar Ants?
Here’s a video of what attracts sugar ants;
Species in my experience, they’re not too fussy with food. Either taking well to sugar water fresh fruits and most insects are also very Hardy ants responding well to drastic changes in temperature some species can thrive and even the harshest of climates like this Canadian carpenter has be seized.
Every winter then you’re freezing weather going to a period of dormancy for several months before merging and flourishing in the summertime. And as I said earlier, she grants can be found pretty much everywhere.
So with a little bit of luck and a know how just about anyone can find themselves the queen and begin raising their own colony. So if you’re looking to getting into and keeping sugar ants definitely a very beginner friendly choice.