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ANTS AS PETS



Page 2

Ants As Pets- continued from page 1

Collecting Live Insects

Ants are found under logs, particularly rotting logs that pull apart easily. In some parts of the U.S., ants live in acorns or twigs on the ground. Catch new queens near porch lights in warm months. If you are lucky, you may see new queens before they have found a place to dig. Worker ants and vertical dirt ant farms can be purchased from: Carolina Biological Supply Company, WardÍs Biology, Connecticut Valley Biological Supply Co., Inc., Nasco Science, Science Kit and Boreal Laboratories. Some states (AZ, HI and TN) have restrictions to importing different species of ants and require you to apply for a USDA permit.

How to collect

By gently turning over rocks on warm spring days you may find a colony with the queen and brood. Since the light and air will disturb the ants, work quickly to gather the queen and as much brood as possible before they go underground. Use an aspirator or small shovel to remove the ants and brood from the colony. If you use a shovel to dig, take care when placing the dirt and ants into a container with light oil or Vaseline around the rim so that the ants can't escape. Let the dirt dry out slowly. Place the test tubes with water and cotton plugs in the box on top of the soil. As the soil dries out, the ants will move into the tubes. When most of the ants are in the tubes, transfer them to a dirt-less nest. (Place an incandescent light over the container to make the ants move faster).

Instructions For Building Artificial Nest

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