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Acanthomyrmex thailandensis

Acanthomyrmex thailandensis

     This is a rare species that was only described in 1995. Its distribution seems limited to northwest Thailand and it has not been found elsewhere.

     It has a true queen and a worker/major caste. Queens are 6 mm in size, normal workers 3.5 mm, and majors 5.5 mm. The workers are heavily indented and have four sharp spines to discourage predators. The majors have a very impressive large head in comparison to the rest of their body, and their powerful jaws are used not only to defend the colony but also to crush seeds for the colony to feed on.

     In the wild, they have been found nesting in cavities inside dead twigs and wood, under the bark of fallen branches, and on occasion in the ground under a protective cover such as a fallen log or small stone. They are a night-active species preferring to forage at night, although they will also come out looking for food on dull overcast days.

     Colonies are only small with about 100 - 200 individuals. New colonies are formed by female alates which disburse by nuptial flights. Queens can establish colonies individually or group together to found colonies. Usually, there are 1 - 3 queens in a colony.

     We are feeding our colonies on a sugar/water mix along with dead insects and small seeds. Being a small ant that has small colonies they will not require much food.

     We are quite pleased with how this species adapts to captivity. They can be kept in most artificial nests but the chambers should be shallow around 3 - 4 mm deep to imitate their natural nests. 

     Note: This species should not be confused with Acanthomyrmex glabfemoralis which is often sold by Chinese collectors and looks very similar. A. glabfemoralis frequently has very small minor queens and is very specific regarding its diet, making it difficult to keep in captivity.


     Summary: This interesting species is adaptable regards its environmental conditions, and has good potential as an easy exotic species to keep in captivity. It also has the added benefit that it does not require much space and is easy to feed.


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