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Messor barbarus are a harvester ant. They collect seeds and store them in a grainary within the nest. The larger ants will chew these seeds to make "ant bread" which is their primary food source. They also feed off dead insects. Messor barbarus will not normally feed on honey/sugar water. They should have a supply of drinking water which must be protected from drowning. These ants thrive at room temperature (above 21 degrees C) but may need additional heater when the temperature is likely to fall below room temperature for an extended period of time. You should always hibernate this species, especially so if your queen has not yet laid any eggs.
Description of Queen: 6-10mm Long, Head Colour: Brown/Black (Sometimes Red)
Description of Workers: 2-5mm Long, Black / Dark Brown, Thorax Black - Shiny
Food requirements: Protein (dead insects) and Seeds (Harvester Ant)
Humidity: 50% – 70% RH - Dry Seed Store Required
Temperature: 21 – 26 degrees C
Hibernation Required: Yes. Hibernate between November to Mid February at 15 degrees (and always above freezing)
Minimum Tube / Connector Diameter: 9mm
Life span of Queen: 20 years +
These ants are not native to the UK and is therefore illegal to release them into the wild. Please contact AntKit if you no longer wish to keep them and we will arrange for them to be collected from you at no cost.