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Messor barbarus

4,9917,50

Messor barbarus, also known as the harvester ant. These ants dissect their name to their mainly granivorous diet. Messor barbarus has a specialized class of workers, so-called majors, who have very strong broad jaws.

Clear

#Q: Number of queens
#w: Number of workers

More information

Messor barbarus, also known as the harvester ant. These ants dissect their name to their mainly granivorous diet. They are common in South-Western Europe. Here this species is often found in orchards and fields laid out by man. They are known for collecting seeds. They then knead them into ant bread, from which they can get all the necessary nutrients. Messor barbarus has a specialized class of workers, so-called majors, who have very strong broad jaws. This allows them to process harder and larger seeds into ant bread.

This species is suitable for beginners once the colony has its first workers. Foundation of a queen can sometimes be difficult due to the stress sensitivity and sensitivity to vibrations of this species.

Difficulty

Easy, Sensitive to disturbances (vibrations, changes in light intensity,…)

Temperature

24-28°C

Nutrition

Insects, Seeds

Queen

15-18 mm, Shiny black, sometimes red head. Some varieties also have red colouring on other body parts

Worker

3-6 mm, Shiny black

Major

8-14 mm, Shiny black, sometimes red tinted head

Colony properties

Claustral colony foundation, Monogynous, Up to 10000 workers

Distribution

Southern Europe

Hibernation

November to Februari

Nuptial flight

Nuptial flight in autumn (october). Only lays first eggs after hibernation

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