Ecosystem Ant Habitat
Above Image Source: http://www.nature-gifts.com/1512-ant-farms-for-sale.html
Lately I've been searching for pets - specifically insects and reptiles, because they are easy to maintain and cost efficient. During my search for the perfect pet, I stumbled upon an interesting "aquarium" as one may call it. The above photo is an image of Ecosystem Ant Habitat and can be found at Nature's Gift Store. This is an aquarium that hosts plants and ants - and allows you to watch as the live creatures thrive and grow!
The ecosystem is very affordable and was a great learning experience to set up. First I had to order the Ecosystem Ant Habitat online from Nature's Gift Store. When the package arrived a few days later, I received an empty container with no ants! I was a little confused, but continued to open the package in search for the instructions. I soon realized that the blue gel shown in the first image had to be mixed and prepared by hand. I went through a fairly simple process of boiling water and mixing a few ingredients, then left the gel to settle and dry for 3-4 hours. I then opened the capsule full of seeds and planted each seed 1/8 of an inch into the gel. The plants should germinate and sprout within 1-2 weeks. Surprisingly, the plants thrive best in a dark environment - so make sure you place your new aquarium in a shaded area for the first 1-2 weeks!
Normally, one would catch their own ants outside. It's important to note that mixing ants from different colonies will lead to an epic ant battle, so please avoid this deadly concoction! I actually ordered my ants online, and received them one day after the ecosystem arrived. The ants came separately. The image below is a picture I took of the ants as soon as they arrived - still in the vial!
I'm not sure if I should have waited for the initial germination of my plants, but I went ahead and inserted the ants into the container. I noticed immediately that some of the ants were singling out the seeds and uprooting them from the gel. I'm not sure if they will do this with all of the seeds, but I sure hope they do not! I would like to see my plants grow as well as watch the ants dig their tunnels.
The image above is a photo of the completed project! I'm excited to see the progress over the next few weeks. The orange stick is something that was inside of the ant vial upon arrival. I believe it is a food source, and that is the reason for me leaving the orange stick in the ecosystem. I will be keeping everyone up to date with this project, and recommend others to participate by ordering their own at the following link - http://www.nature-gifts.com/1512-ant-farms-for-sale.html.
Video Overview - Ecosystem Ant Habitat
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