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I am by no means biologist (I'm a programmer), but I want to make an experiment that involve the participation of ants. So please excuse my ignorance on the subject and my potentially uninformed questions.

I need to find some ants, but it's fall/winter here in Eastern Europe, so it seems that I won't be able to find in the wild. So my questions are:

  1. If I find a species that is local (meaning that it's used to live through winter - maybe entering some kind of lethargy?) is it just putting them in high temperature enough to get them out of this mode?

  2. Probably depends on the species, but if I take just few individual workers without a queen, and provide them with food, is it possible for them to live without a queen? Clearly they won't reproduce so their "colony" will disappear, but are the individuals able to live for a while without a queen?

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  • $\begingroup$ If that is enough for you, you can actually buy complete ant farms. $\endgroup$
    – skymningen
    Commented Nov 26, 2015 at 15:01

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Do you have any specific reason for using a wild species? If not, you would have better using a lab lineage (or any ant farm). Breeding a wild species by yourself might be very tricky.

Taking care of an ant colony might not be as easy as you may expect. Your best chance is to target a species of interest based on past studies and visit a lab that is breeding this specific species.

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