- What's a Test Tube Insert?
- Shipping Conditions
Pheidole pilifera are one of the best Pheidole spp in North America and are overall a very exciting species in captivity. Colonies eat just about anything, and grow very quickly if heated and fed frequently. Major workers have large heads used to crack seeds and tear through insect parts. They are particularly notable for the large differences between the "Big-headed" majors and the smaller minor workers.
Pheidole pilifera is a granivorous species, and can be often found with lures of walnut and many seeds. These ants should be kept hot to maintain growth, and hibernation is not required. Minor workers range from 1-2mm, and major workers range from 4-5mm, with queens reaching close to 7mm.
Colonies should be kept at above 28 degrees Celsius with humidity levels above 65%.
Wild pictures come from Josiah Kilburn :) Follow him on Instagram at @maxhikephotography
|Scientific Name:||Pheidole pilifera|
|Common Name:||Hairy Big-headed Ant|
|Taxonomy:||Kingdom: Animalia | Phylum: Arthropoda | Class: Insecta | Order: Hymenoptera | Family: Formicidae | Subfamily: Myrmicinae | Genus: Pheidole | Species: P. pilifera.|
|Care Difficulty:||Pheidole pilifera is a beginner leved ant species.|
|Distribution:||This species is widely destributed throughout USA. It can also be found in Mexico. Here in Canada, there are a few unverified records of suspected Pheidole pilifera in Alberta.|
|Habitat:||Pheidole pillifera have been known to make small ant hills in sunny habitats like grasslands. They seem to prefer sandy areas.|
|Colony form:||Pheidole pilifera are monogynous meaning that they can only have 1 queen in a colony.|
|Queen:||Queens of this species reach close to 7mm.|
|Worker:||Workers will reach aroun 1-2 mm.|
|Soldier:||Like all Pheidole species, this species has soldiers. Soldiers of this species are around 4-5mm.|
|Males:||There are no recorded sizes of males in this species.|
|Nutrition:||Pheidole pillifera will eat almost anything. They will easily take most carbohydrates without issue, this includes: honey, sugar water, honey water, and sunburst ant nectar. When it comes to proteins, Pheidole pilifera will take almost any protein source most feeder insects such as, fruit flies, crickets, mealworms, superworms, surinam roaches, and discoid roaches. It is generally recommended to feed larger prey items pre-killed because of their small worker sizes. Colonies will most likely have issues taking down large prey items. Pheidole pilifera have been observed to collect seeds and eat them in the wild. It is acceptable to feed them diiferent types of seeds such as dandelion seeds, walnuts, and almonds. It is recommended to break them into small pieces to make it easier for the ants to consume.|
|Air humidity:||Colonies should be kept at around 65% humidity.|
|Temperature||Pheidole pillifera should be kept at around 28C for optimal growth. Room temperature will work fine but coloneis might not grow as fast.|
|Hibernation:||It is not recommended to hibernate Pheidole pillifera. Colonies will grow all year long.|
|Nesting Habits:||Colonies can be found under rocks or other debris. Colonies can also be found nesting in regular soil.|
|Kind of Formicaria:||Pheidole pillifera will do well in most formicaria. It is recommended to avoid wood nests for this species. Colonies will do well in any Tarheel ants, Por amor, and Buckeye Myrmecology nest. Due to their small size, it is recommended to keep them in a nest with tight fitting glass to prevent escapes.|
|Description:||Pheidole pillifera is an amazing beginner species perfect for someone who is looking for an entertaining desk top ant species. Due to their small size, they can be kept in small formicaria making them not take up a lot of space. Colonies will swarm food making it very entertaining to watch as you see large headed soldiers and smaller sized workers consume and break down their food.|
|Offering quantity:||Queen, Queen + 1-5 workers, Queen + 5-10 workers, Queen + 10-25 workers, Queen + 25-50 workers, Queen + 50-100 workers.|
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.
This species comes from more tropical areas than Canada, and are not cold-tolerant. Thus, we will not ship them in the winter
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
This product is from Canada Ant Colony. The full catalogue, including all variants, can be found at https://canada-ant-colony.com