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Ant keeping 101


Matttoadman
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Ok folks, I have come to the conclusion that my West African Rubber frogs are only interested in eating ants and termites. Out of the six I have only two will sparingly take newborn roach nymphs, pin head crickets or isopods. So out desperation I collected  Tetramorium caespitum to feed them. Yes I know the risks of field collecting feeders. However the risk of starvation is 100% fatal. Plus these are wild caughtfrogs , so they come with those risks already there. They eagerly ate the pavement ants. These have been under a rock in my naturalized cactus garden for sometime. They trail to my porch each night to get Cat food. Attempting to raid a wild nest more than twice appeared to chase them off. I did discover a nest of little black ants Monomorium minimum eggs, pupae, winged and non winged larger(queens?) and small workers under a concrete on the roof of my pigeon coop. The are currently in a jar. Although the lid cannot keep the workers in. My frogs did enjoy these too. How can I go about keeping these to use them as a safer, more constant food supply?  I thought I could put them in something that could be placed in vivarium floor and opened to allow workers out to forage. These would of course be eaten.  What is need to keep them happy and secure?

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Ants aren't very good feeders. They grow and breed very slowly, at least in captivity. If you can find subterranean termites those are a better option- they can easily be trapped in large numbers by burying a PVC pipe with a few holes drilled into it stuffed with cardboard in the ground near where you've seen termites. They should colonize the cardboard and before long you'll be able to obtain hundreds or thousands of termites from the trap. For winter you can take a bunch of termites indoors and keep them on damp soil and cardboard. They'll produce reproductives and start breeding and eventually you could have a thriving colony of termites. 

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What species of termites are you referring too? I have found zero info that you can start a termite colony without a queen. Or that you can get termites to survive in captivity period. I would prefer to raise termites personally

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Subterranean termites. The small termites that live underground. So long as you get nymphs (capable of becoming any caste) or immature reproductives (recognizable by their slightly larger size and wingbuds) they'll eventually produce secondary reproductives and start breeding. 

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