Hey! This is a live product. If you are purchasing ants during the winter months, please remember to purchase the "Winter Shipping (Live Guarantee) (72 hour heat pack + 1 inch foam cushion)" in order to guarantee the order.
Formica montana is an extremely aggressive and dominant species of ant within the fields and meadows of central North America. In fact, it's frequently able to drive out other species of ants, or change their behaviours to favour more timid foraging strategies. The first time I had a colony of this species, I admit I was a bit disappointed, since the workers were tiny and didn't show the red sides more typical of this species (these workers are pictured below). However, as the colony grew, I found the worker size nearly doubled, and the red became prominent in many workers. Formica montana, like it's relatives, is very polygynous, but only accepts queens in the founding stage. Personally, I've always loved the silver/red aesthetic of the larger workers
This is our collection of most of the field ants, or Serviformica. These are large, silver at queens from 8-12 mm and workers from 3.5-7mm.
This product, for the sake of ease of navigation, also includes Formica neoclara
They grow large colonies up to 5000 workers in just 3 years. They prefer 22-26 Celsius and like around 50% humidity, though there is slight variation across species. They're more skittish than most ants, and so are of medium difficulty to start, but are extremely enthusiatic and fast growing once they break 50 workers. In the wild, Formica are some of the most dominant ants, hunting down other species and consuming large amounts of biomass. We get many of these each year, though the numbers are variable.
What's a test tube insert?
Test tube inserts are upgrades to the test tube setups provided. If purchased, they come with a dark hood to lower light levels for the colony, an insert which provides a living space, and a feeding insert to provide food for the colony.
Ungrouted inserts are a blank plastic insert which helps provide a more suitable space for the ants to grip (as opposed to glass tubes), while grouted inserts are bedded with a substrate which helps distribute humidity more evenly throughout the test tube, and helps certain ants create their cocoons more easily. Overall, grouted inserts are more comfortable for the ants.
You will NOT need an insert for colonies in test tubes, but it does help for certain species. IF you are moving the ants into a nest immediately, do NOT get a test tube insert.
Just a warning, we will NOT ship live ants into the US unless the receiver has a permit. If such an order is made, it will be refunded, minus a 10% processing fee and restocking fee