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Loving My Antworks Ant Farm!

I mentioned in passing that my friend, Anne, gave me the Antworks ant farm that I wanted for my birthday way early in December so that I could have the ants delivered in time.  It’s a super cool ant farm since it’s filled with blue gel that gives the ants the moisture and food that they need.  It  also plugs in andlights up a cool neon blue.  It looks amazing and I was looking forward to watching ants tunnel around.

Ant Farm Before Ants

It would make a pretty cool night light even without any ants…

Buying the Ants

You can’t have a cool ant farm without some cool ants.  I wanted Harvester ants since I read in several places online that they are the easiest to really see.  You just have to be careful not to get bit since they can do some major damage.

Well, my first ant order was a flop.  I used the site suggested in the info booklet and in some of the Amazon reviews, antsalive.com.  They immediately charged me the $4.95, but they never sent the ants.  Then they didn’t respond to my calls or emails.  I disputed the charge with Discover and received a refund.

My second order from a different company, http://www.mykidsadventure.com/, but also seemed to amount to nothing.  Once again, they charged me (this time $7.99).  They even sent an email the next day saying that they were shipped.  But a week passed, and I still had no ants.  I called and emailed.  That was about a week before Christmas.  Well, on December 26 (after deciding not to try again until the Spring), I ended up with two vials of live Harvester ants!  Yay!  Happy birthday to me!

My Cool Ant Farm

My ants went right to work!  I was worried that the two different sets would fight, but they all seem to work well together.

Their first order of business was to behead the handful of dead ants, and then they started using the bodies and heads in the construction of their ant hill.  Morbidly interesting to watch.  They also started on one main tunnel the first day.  They bite off a piece of the gel, walk it up, and pile it up very specifically (interspersing dead body parts within the gel piles).

End of Day 1

Here is all of the progress they made in just 1 day…

By the second day, they branched out to two tunnels, and they used the 3rd and 4th day to join those together and start tunneling on the bottom.  Altogether, it’s exciting to watch!

During Day 4

Here is what it looked like during the middle of Day 4. They have even more tunneled out on the other side too. It’s really cool!

My one and only concern at this point is that there are always at least one or two ants trying to eat the seal at the top.  I definitely do not want any of these large mandible ants to escape.  But they don’t seem to be making super fast progress.  I think I will just duct tape down the top while we are out of town…just in case.  They can eat through duct tape too, but it would take even more time.

If you have any geeky friends like me or maybe a kid’s birthday coming up, you should check out this Antworks ant farm - they have a basic one and the one that lights up.  To actually get the ants, I would suggest the site that ended up working for me – http://www.mykidsadventure.com/.

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7 comments to Loving My Antworks Ant Farm!

  • Wow – that’s pretty cool looking. My wife is not much of a bug gal… but my son would LOVE this. I’m going to have to run it by her. Cool stuff, Crystal.

  • Now that they have all the heavy construction out of the way they will have a lot of spare time on their hands to plot their escape.

  • I got one of those for my kids a couple of years ago. Really neat to watch.

    They won’t make it through the seal, but it will look pretty jagged in places near the end.

    When they start dying off, dig out the corpses. Just when it started looking really cool, the dead bodies started molding. It’s caused by all of the moisture in the blue stuff.

    When you’re done, they make an epoxy you can pour into it to turn it into a permanent sculpture.

  • Very neat!! These sure have changed since I was a kid, haha…

  • Oh wow! These are nothing like I remember them. How cool!

  • @a terrible husband, hope she says yes. :-)

    @jane savers, they do try their darndest, but so far no escapees.

    @Jason, I don’t think I can reach all of the dead bodies but thanks for the heads up.

    @J Money, I know!

    @Debt BLAG, I’m loving them. We left for 10 days and they are still going strong. :-)

  • If I didn’t think my kids would jump right out of their skin by viewing that ant farm, I would get one. They are both scared of any creature that could be considered a bug.