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Discussion Starter #1
Just curious if anyone on the site had any experience in Keeping an ant colony as feeders? If so how do you keep/culture them? Where did you get a queen? This might not be a realistic thing, if not let me know why.
Reason I'm asking is I've read that ants are a main food source in the wild.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
What's the correct kind. I'd assume one that's are small and don't sting. I wouldn't raise the ant colony in the viv either. Just sprinkle a few in from time to time.
 

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What Julio is trying to say: "Please, don't be stupid enough to friggin do this"
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Ok didn't expect this to be such a stupid question. I'm curious if the proper species is available. I'm not going in my back yard and digging up ants. Do they not eat a large amount of ants in the wild?
 

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I study ants. If you find a species, that doesn't sting, that is very un-aggressive, specific ant species may be perfect as feeders...
HOWEVER, and this is a major however, many people, use poisons to get rid of ants, you need to make sure none of your neighbors do or that could kill your frogs. Furthermore, many species of ants are highly agressive and could potentially hurt a dart frog, so if you can't be sure the ant doesn't sting, spray lots of Formic Acid or have a bad bite you shouldn't use it.
As for a few surviving and setting up shop. Not going to happen. Ant workers cannot set up a new colony without a queen, they are usually infertile, or if fertile, only lay male eggs which they cannot breed with (there are always a few exceptions, but the vast majority of ant species follow these rules). I have fed ants to darts before (long time ago and not to my current frogs), and it is amazing the different reaction you get when compared to them hunting fruit-flies.
Saying all that, I wouldn't feed them ants unless you are completely aware of what you are doing and only a few at a time.
 

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I wouldn't know where to tell you to get ants, obviously not from your backyard since the risks are too great.

I think it can be done and I completely agree with you. If your frog misses some they would not be able to reproduce and take over your tank.

The only problem I see is finding a good species that is suitable for this kind of thing (feeding PDFs) and maintaining a healthy colony.
 

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There are several smaller species that would be perfect, some types of Lasius, Leptothorax, mild mannered Myrmica, but you would just need to make sure they were the proper kind. I am actually setting up an ant farm of Lasius neoniger and will probably see the reaction my R. imitators have to these small and very non-agressive ants (they actually run away leaving their brood behind when you disturb their nest). However, I am in Alberta, Canada so I can't tell you what ant species from your area would be good. If you have the ability to find a perfect ant species all for it, I just don't want people to make a mistake and have them lose some frogs.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks to those that didn't flame me for my ideas. Some people are quick to speak with little valuable info to speak of. If you could glasious keep me posted on your success. What I'd like to do is set a farm up myself as another source of food and so I can watch the ants. I've always like ant farms and would like to have another for dual purpose. Will you be receiving a queen ant? If so where did you get it from?
 

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I got my ant queen from collecting her in the wild. She just started laying eggs.
antscanada.com has good ant farms and stuff. Plus I believe they have a link to a trading system for actual colonies in North America.
I think ants farms are awesome (and though I study ants I haven't had the greatest luck with them haha) and even if you don't use them as feeders they are still fun to have!
 

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Thanks to those that didn't flame me for my ideas. Some people are quick to speak with little valuable info to speak of. If you could glasious keep me posted on your success. What I'd like to do is set a farm up myself as another source of food and so I can watch the ants. I've always like ant farms and would like to have another for dual purpose. Will you be receiving a queen ant? If so where did you get it from?
I found these after trying to find some online.

ANTS for SALE ... and a few other things. | Guaranteed to Build Tunnels in ANT FARMS

The only other ones I could find for sale were harvester ants but they would definitely not work since they sting. Also im not sure how reliable that website is, so dont trust me 100% on it.
 

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Yeah, harvestor ants would not be a good ant species they stng and have a bad bite.
 

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I will also point out most of the posts I can find about ants on this site are about ants invading a terrarium, especially the house pest Monomorium pharaonis, the Pharaoh Ant. It is a major house pest and breeds fast and in large numbers can easily take down a frog. They also like warm moist environments and easily breed in vivs. I am sure in the southern states there are even more ants that can do this, and anyone with ant problems should be aware that ants in the house could possibly do this. Furthermore If you ever find ants in the house, you should deal with them as it often means there is another type of issue allowing them to use your house as a habitable environment.
 

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It is illegal in the USA to transport ant queens across state borders without specific permits by the USDA. Attempting to transport ants without a permit is highly frowned upon by the goverment.

One of the things to keep in mind is that you really have to use a very docile ant as the frogs are trapped in an area with a bunch of pissed off ants when you sprinkle them into the tank... In the wild, the frogs move around and pick off foragers without alerting the colony.
If you can figure out a way to introduce them without pissing them off, people have used Tetramorium caespitum.

I would avoid any of the ants in the Monomorium genus as they tend to be a hard to control pest.... and in my experience not accepted by the frogs.

Ed
 

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It is true, ants should not be shipped. The thing on antscanada.com is for people to find other ant keepers in their areas (I wasn't specific enough). And yes Monomorium species can be a bad pest. I also agree only a few ants at a time would be best .
 
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