ANGEL OF DEATH/Guardian Goblin/DEATH SPRITES: Creatures Saving My Ant Empire

ANGEL OF DEATH/Guardian Goblin/DEATH SPRITES: Creatures Saving My Ant Empire


I’m left with no choice. I have to kill them. All the survivors within this terrarium, called
the Hacienda Del Dorado, need to be extinguished! AC Family, it was time for Phase 3: Project
Cloverfield. The release of an Angel of Death, to completely
kill all surviving ants within the Hacienda Del Dorado, before the mites decide to spread
to our other ant kingdoms. Excuse me, fruit fly milennials. I’ll be needing some of this, to prepare for
the arrival of our new Angel of Death, which lays inside here. Please SUBSCRIBE to my channel, and hit the
BELL icon. Welcome to the AC Family! Enjoy! It’s night time in the Hacienda Del Dorado,
Night 1 of Project Cloverfield, the first night that our newly introduced Angel of Death
was going to spend, within these territories, in our Antiverse. Now, if you’ve been following this channel
for awhile, you may notice that the Hacienda Del Doradan terrain looks different from normal,
and I’ll be getting into why that is, in a bit. But look, a movement now, up in the wooden
bridges above. You could almost miss her if you don’t look
carefully. She stares at us from the shadows with her
piercing reptilian eyes. AC Family, behold, a house gecko, of the genus
Hemidactylus, just a juvenile, but wary of our presence in her feeding grounds. Her cryptic colouration makes her camouflage
perfectly into the surroundings, as she hugs onto the driftwood, laying as flat and discreet
as possible. But the thing that trips me out the most are
those eyes! Check out those vertical slits for pupils,
which make her look almost serpentine and netherworldly. Staring at her was like staring at a small
goblin-like demon. Obviously, not a demon, just a cute little
gecko coming out for its nightly ritual to feed. But for those of you who are anticipating
for the reveal from last week’s video, you may surprised to know that this little house
gecko is not only not a demon, but it is also not our Angel of Death sent in these lands
to exterminate our remaining population of mite-infected ants. In fact, I didn’t even know there was a gecko
in here to begin with! You see I live in tropical Manila, Philippines
where house geckoes are common in homes, kind of like house spiders in North America. They feed on little flying insects that manage
to sneak into the home, so I welcome them to live with me. This little one probably saw the current state
of the Hacienda Del Dorado as the perfect opportunity to move in, seeing as the population
of the Golden Empire, the supercolony of yellow crazy ants that used to rule these lands,
had been greatly reduced by their parasitic mite plague. When the Golden Empire was healthy and filled
these territories, the gecko would have been eaten alive, but now, with just a few weakened
and mite-infested ants, this gecko was living the high life eating flying insects and quite
possibly even our ants! You’ll find out more about how this gecko
actually helps us later on in the video. But meanwhile, let’s get to what everyone’s
been waiting for, the revelation of our Angel of Death, and find out why the Hacienda Del
Dorado had to undergo, yet another renovation, namely this pond. AC Family, what’s coming up will truly leave
you flabbergasted, as it did me! And trust me, you won’t want to miss, Phase
B of Project Cloverfield, the deployment and introduction of more creatures, coming up. So, last week, within this receptacle awaited
our quote unquote “Angel of Death” to be released, a creature that, as mentioned, I needed to
help kill off all remaining Golden Empire. Now if you’re new here, and are wondering
what all this is about, real quick: the Golden Empire, one of the O.G. and beloved ant supercolonies
of this channel, which used to number in the millions, have been greatly reduced in population
by an unexpected, mass parasitic mite outbreak. Luckily, one of you AC Family commented in
a previous video featuring our rhino beetles, of all videos, identified that the mites seen
on their bodies were predatory Hypoaspis mites, that are known to eat bad parasitic mites
wanting to suck on beetle blood. This brilliant comment gave me the idea to
attempt using these Hypoaspis mites, to cure our mite-plagued Golden Empire from their
parasitic mites. So after a careful experiment, we were shocked
to discover that indeed, the Hypoaspis mites ate the parasitic mites on our ants. So in last week’s episode, I quarantined as
much of the remaining Golden Empire ants as I could collect from the Hacienda Del Dorado,
and exposed them to a team of Hypoaspis mites harvested from our rhino beetles, in a final
operation to save our Golden Empire. We even quarantined a mite-free queen, along
with a mite-free entourage from our experiment, to have safely put away, just in case, our
worst fears became reality, and our quarantined colony ended up losing their battle to the
mites. At least we had a mite-free queen and workers
to restart the Golden Empire from scratch. But, I think you’ll be happy to see the results
of Project Quarantine coming up later in this video, so do hang tight for that. But, as for the remaining ants still living
in the Hacienda Del Dorado that I missed, sadly I realized that I needed to exterminate
them, because I was afraid that had I just allowed these infected Golden Empire ants
to die out naturally, the mites, having no more food left, might crawl out of the Hacienda
Del Dorado and go on to infect all my other ant kingdoms in the ant room, which would
be a disaster, and wouldn’t take the mites long at all to execute. All ant keepers know that once an ant colony
contracts parasitic mites, they’re pretty much dead in no time, as we’ve seen so far
with the Golden Empire. So, here we are, AC Family, the Angel of Death,
its purpose: to kill all ants and the mites parasitizing them. I gave you guys a chance to guess its identity
in last week’s hidden video, through a riddle. A lot of you guys had some great guesses,
and some guesses were ummm… quite odd to say the least. But, if you missed it, here was the riddle: Below the stars, this creature hunts,
Under the moon, it moves and grunts, Feeding on dog food for brunch,
Or swimming in water during its wet months, Nasty toxins come from this bunch,
I always wash my hands at once, Don’t touch your eyes nor touch your tongues,
A beast that loves to snack and much, Eating the ants with mites for lunch. After several minutes, out of nowhere, our
Angel of Death peeked its bumpy head out. And then it clumsily plopped itself out of
its transport container, and onto Hacienda Del Doradan soil. AC Family, our Angel of Death, is a toad. A juvenile cane toad to be exact, most likely
a female, though they’re a bit harder to sex at this age. Let’s go over the riddle as we watch her snoop
around her new home! “Below the stars, this creature hunts,
Under the moon, it moves and grunts” These lines refer to these cane toads being
nocturnal by nature. They emerge in the night to eat insects and
small creatures. Males also make toad noises, either for mate-calling
or informing other males to avoid mating confusion. “Feeding on dog food for brunch” refers to
the fact that these cane toads are known to actually eat dog food. “Or swimming in water during its wet months”
refers to the fact that these toads are amphibians, with a fully aquatic life stage, where they
emerge from their eggs as tadpoles. “Nasty toxins come from this bunch,
I always wash my hands at once, Don’t touch your eyes nor touch your tongues”
refers to the fact that toads posses special organs at the sides of their heads called
parotid glads which when squeezed can release a milky-white fluid known as bufotoxin which
is poisonous to many animals. Human deaths have actually been recorded from
eating cane toads. As a kid, I made the mistake of rubbing my
eyes, after touching American toads, and believe me it wasn’t pleasant! And finally “A beast that loves to snack and
much, eating the ants with mites for lunch” refers to my deployment of this young cane
toad to be the creature to eat all the remaining Golden Empire ants in the Hacienda Del Dorado. Many of you guessed correctly by answering
“cane toad”, but even “toad” was correct. For the many of you that said “frog”, you
were partially correct because indeed toads are a type of frog, but not all frogs are
considered toads. Finally, in case you were second guessing
yourself, I designed this entire riddle to be an acrostic poem, where the first letters
of each line spelled “Bufonidae”, which happens to be the taxonomic family of true toads. Congrats to all who guessed it right. So my plan was to supplement this toad’s diet
with roaches and worms, and have it snack on our Golden Empire ants as it came across
them. Now I’ve owned cane toads before, and these
toads have very voracious appetites and at this size have been known to eat ants! So, I was confident our Angel of Death would
do an excellent job and picking off all remaining Golden Empire, but as I watched her disappear
over a hill, little did I know, she was going to surprise us with some alternate plans. But now that we had a toad living in the Hacienda
Del Dorado, we needed to make some alterations to the terrain. We needed to make these lands, toad country,
and to do that, we needed to add a pond. I began to scrape at the earth to make room
for a new body of water. Unlike most frogs, toads actually have the
advantage of not needing tonnes of water 24-7. Toads simply need to soak themselves periodically
but spend most of their time on land, so this body of water needed not be too deep. I used this naturalistic water holder to form
our new pond. Once in place, I added some bottled purified
water. I just couldn’t wait to watch our new toad
visiting this pond we made for it to soak itself up as needed. It’s part of the joys of caring for toads,
watching them hydroregulate on both land and water. So all was set. The Hacienda Del Dorado, now had a totally
new look. It had transformed into tropical bogland habitat,
perfect for our toad to enjoy and do its awesome work at eating our ants. What do you guys think of the Hacienda Del
Dorado’s new look? I also made sure to moisten the surrounding
area for added toad comfort. I really wanted for our toad to feel at home
here. Now although it didn’t seem the toad wanted
to show herself at the present time, I knew later in the night, she’d emerge to feed,
and when she did, I was going to be ready to film her eating ants! It’s night time in the Hacienda Del Dorado,
Night 1 of Project Cloverfield, the first night that our newly introduced Angel of Death
was going to spend, within these territories, in our Antiverse. Mite-infected Golden Empire ants were wandering
the premise. And look, stretching long aside our new pond,
emerged some young earthworms seeking new grounds. They scaled the moss and rocks in hopes to
find new places in which to form new burrows. These normally subterranean creatures have
emerged above ground as a response to rain. It seems wetting the lands earlier this evening
had filled the burrows of the local earthworms with water, causing them to come out and seek
drier soils. Earthworms, though kinda gross, are essential
to the ecosystems they are part of, as they are great at fertilizing plants, aerating
soils, and breaking down decaying matter. With the Hacienda Del Dorado being a 100%
bioactive terrarium, these earthworms are super important in these lands. AC Family, look at how they move by using
sections of their body to act as an anchor while the rest contracts, as it squirms forward. They can do this to move both forward and
backward. Earthworms don’t have eyes, but their skin
is photosensitive so they can sense light and shadows. This helps them avoid predators, but I knew
that all this worm squirming was the perfect lure to attract our Angel of Death out of
hiding to start feeding. But you know what, AC Family? I waited and waited. In fact, after several cups of coffee, I waited
all night until sunrise, and there was no sign of our Angel of Death. Hmm… What was going on here? No toad, and a whole sleepless night gone
by. The next morning, I scanned the lands in hopes
to find the toad perhaps hopping around or soaking in our pond. But to my dismay, she was nowhere to be found. Hmmm… I spotted members of the Golden Empire wandering
the grounds. Mites were clearly, and quite literally, draining
the life out of them. But the thing was, as weird as it is for me
to say this because I love these ants, we really needed them all eaten asap, to make
sure Project Cloverfield was successful, so we wouldn’t have to worry about mites crawling
out of the terrarium to infect my other ants and critters, nor would we have to worry if
we ever decided to repopulate the Hacienda Del Dorado with ants again, more about that
later. But we truly depended on this cane toad, wherever
it was in here, to get going and start ant-eating! Night 2 of Project Cloverfield. The Hacienda Del Dorado was still, and I was
determined to film our Angel of Death emerging and eating. Scanning the premises, it seemed our toad
was still nowhere to be seen, but I was camped out and prepared to endure another long, sleepless
night. To help the time pass while waiting for our
toad to emerge, I enjoyed watching our rhino beetles, also nocturnal, coming out to feed,
and speaking of which guys, for those of you following their story and anticipating the
2019 Rhino Beetle Games, I’ve got some pretty exciting news, particularly for you Team Hephaestus! Your champion, Team Hephaestus has officially
arrived. Here he is gorging on his banana. I’ve got all emerged beetles stacked side-by-side,
and have weights holding their covers down as they are super strong and have grown capable
of lifting their lids open! Talk about strength! I can’t wait for the Rhino Beetle Games to
finally start, once the final male rhino beetle, Hades, has fully hardened and has charged
up, ready to go. I bet this will happen in a week or so, and
when it does, may the Rhino Beetle Games begin! Who out there is as excited as I am? What team are you guys?! Sound off in the comments section, and cheer
on your champion Gladiator, for a chance at winning a prize at the end of the games. But waiting seems to be all we’ve been doing
lately, and will you believe, once again all night, our toad refused to emerge. What was going on here? Night 3 of Project Cloverfield, and still
no sign of our Angel of Death. Where could this toad be? Seriously, I mean it wasn’t coming out to
eat and I was certain it hadn’t come out to soak either seeing as I saw no splash marks
on the glass. We needed to lure it out somehow. And so I came up with a plan! For sure this toad was probably dry and needed
to come out to soak itself soon, but perhaps it didn’t know there was even a fresh pond
here waiting to hydrate its dry bumpy skin! So, I looked up a Youtube video and found
an 11 hour audio video of a peaceful river and played that gently below the terrarium. My hopes were that the sounds would entice
our dehydrated toad to come out of hiding, to have a soak and then eat some ants already! And AC Family, what it did do was entice our
baby gecko to emerge, who curiously checked out where the sounds of running water was
coming from. “I don’t remember there being a river here!”
it thought to itself. After nearly 3 hours of waiting and still
no sign of the toad, I figured that maybe our spotlight was perhaps scaring it. After all, these cane toads were dark-loving
creatures, so I reduced the light to further cloak the lands in darkness. For sure the toad was going to come out now! No bright lights to fear, beloved Angel of
Death. Please come out for us tonight! It was getting critical, with every passing
night, waiting for this toad to do its thing. We needed the toad to eat all these ants carrying
mites, and with every passing day, more of these ants were dying, which meant more hungry
mites looking for new hosts. If this continued, our other ants and critters
in the Ant Room were in immediate danger. Now I’m sure a lot of you were wondering the
same thing I was wondering, and that was if our resident house gecko was actually eating
the ants. If this was the case, we actually didn’t need
a toad, and this gecko would have become the new Angel of Death to wipe out our Golden
Empire. So I made sure to watch the gecko as well,
and check this out, AC Family! I was surprised to discover, that it actually
had no interest in our ants of the Golden Empire, but it did relish any flying queen
alates of other ant species that were dropping in to check out the currently unoccupied territories
in hopes to start a nest! I watched it actively hunt down and eat black
crazy ant queens dropping in to house shop! I had no idea other ants from the outside
were even visiting the Hacienda Del Dorado. Amazing to see how much actually happens in
the night that we day-beings miss! Turns out the presence of our gecko was actually
beneficial to the Golden Empire, acting as a guardian to outside ant queens, wanting
to steal these fertile lands from its original owners. This gecko and our ants had in a way established
a mutually symbiotic relationship, a biological partnership. But speaking of biological partnerships, it
seems ours with our Angel of Death was not quite working out. Over the next few hours, I stayed up only
to a motionless terrarium, no toad coming out to feed nor soak, and all to the droning
and soon annoying sound of running stream water. On Night 4, I tried a couple things. I figured maybe it needed a rain shower to
encourage its emergence. After all many insects and amphibians emerge
after it rains here in the Philippines. This did not work. No toad. I tried luring the toad out with a superworm. Surely no toad could resist the tantalizing
squirming of a live superworm, right? Nope, no toad in sight. OK, what was going on here?! I have a lot of patience, but this toad was
truly holding off on us. In a final act of desperation, I even tried
my best to sing the toad out, probably an idea that came out of delirious lack of sleep. I remember nodding off to sleep on the Ant
Room floor, singing some Mariah Carey, some time before sunrise (I’m thinking of you in
my sleepless solitude tonight). I gave my all, and nothing was working! I had to rip myself away from this toad for
moment. Let’s take a look at our recuperating quarantined
Golden Empire. How were they doing now that a team of Hypoaspis
mites had infiltrated their mite-infested colony? AC Family, I think you’ll be as shocked as
I was to see what I saw. Have a look! Are you guys seeing what I’m seeing? Ants with little to no mites, or actually,
I don’t think I could see any mites at all! It had been about a week of exposure to the
Hypoaspis mites. I don’t actually know where the Hypoaspis
mites were, as they were no longer visible in the honey-water tube through which they
were introduced to the quarantine setup. I dunno, do you guys see any Hypoaspis mites
or parasitic mites on our ants? My guess was that the Hypoaspis mites were
perhaps somewhere frequenting the ants’ burrows within this AC Outworld in which they were
setting up shop for now picking off the parasitic mites they came across. When I saw this, my heart leaped in my chest! AC Family, I think our plan worked! It seems that within a week, the colony was
parasitic mite-free, or at least it seemed the majority of them were. I resolved to keep an close eye on this quarantined
colony and monitor them over the next couple of weeks or so before we conclude for sure
that they’ve battled the mites. If so, I think we could go ahead and reunite
our insurance queen and her entourage safely back to the colony. What a relief, AC Family. I feel our Golden Empire is well on the road
to recovery and if all goes well will one day regenerate back into the supercolony they
once were. But now we had to get serious about ensuring
the success of Project Cloverfield. Behold, within this AC Ant Tower, I had three
superworms, which were to act as bait. My plan was to fixate this Ant Tower inside
the Hacienda Del Dorado and hopefully entice the toad to come out! If this plan wasn’t going to work tonight,
I was drawing up some plans for a Phase B for Project Cloverfield, which I think you
guys might find super neat! Night 5 of Project Cloverfield. Not a toad in sight. I could feel that by this 5th night our toad
was hungry and eager to eat. I was prepared to catch it emerging at any
moment, and AC Family, you won’t believe what happened on Night 5. Nothing. Literally nothing. No toad. This was the final straw. I had to go in and find our Angel of Death,
who at this point I wanted to nickname Angel of No Show! I began to feel around the setup to try to
get it to jump out of hiding. By this day, I was greatly underslept, now
catching a bad cold due to staying up late all these nights, which would explain why
you may have noticed that it sounds like I have a frog in my throat for this video, pun
intended, but most of all I was acting out of fear that the mites which were eliminating
every ant in here one by one, and were making plans now to migrate to my other ant colonies
and critter setups, and I couldn’t let this happen! Phase B of Project Cloverfield was now in
full effect! When I couldn’t get the toad to jump out into
sight, I proceeded to remove the driftwood to get a better look, and that was when I
saw it! There it is! There you are. Our Angel of Death jumped into sight! Come here on little guy. Where have you been? AC Family, behold! Our elusive Angel of Death. I have no idea why our toad didn’t emerge
to feed. Do any of you guys have any ideas? Unless she was feeding quietly in the shadows
somewhere. Anyway first thing’s first, I moistened the
toad with some fresh water. Second, I dropped in a superworm, which she
totally ignored. I also stuck in a few roaches which were also
ignored. I’ve had cane toads in the past, and this
was not typical cane toad appetite, so perhaps she was just frightened. After a vet visit, I’ll have to rehome our
Angel of Death to a loving home. I decided not to replace the driftwood I removed
on this end. Why? Well, AC Family, we’ll be needing a bit more
room for the completion of Project Cloverfield Phase B. So, AC Family, are you ready for
this? We really needed to exterminate these remaining
ants carrying the parasitic mites, and so after careful searching, I found the perfect
agents to do the job that our Angel of Death failed to do. Perhaps I was a little ambitious trying to
deploy an Angel of Death to wipe our Hacienda Del Dorado clean of ants. But this time, guys, I was going to try something
smaller, some Death Sprites. AC Family behold, our new Death Sprites to
carry out the completion of Project Cloverfield! It’s night time in the Hacienda Del Dorado,
Night 1 of Phase B of Project Cloverfield, the first night that our newly introduced
Death Sprites were going to spend, within these territories, in our Antiverse. And look, it’s our house gecko making an appearance
to check out the lowlands. But what is it doing down here? Let’s see. It seems to be looking for something. Quietly it smells the area with its tongue
like a serpent, and moves across the floor honing in something that has caught its attention. Ahh here it is. A pile of rotting banana, placed here from
the Bowl of Life to attract fruit flies and ants to the area. She licks the sweet and fermented banana cum
gusto. Scrumptious and delectable! But then a rustling of leaves caught my eye. Look here! There beneath the dead leaves, waits in the
darkness, one of our several Death Sprites, a painted toad. Also called narrowmouth toads, these microhylid
toads are endemic to where I live, emerging to hunt at night. She’s such a beautiful death sprite, isn’t
she, hiding steathily in darkness? But the big question was: did she have a taste
for ants? So much relied on whether or not these tiny
painted toads would eat our ants, and I was determined to find out. I waited and watched. Yes! Yes! Thanosed! Alright, AC Family! It’s too bad our cane toad wasn’t a mainstay
on the channel, but these new painted toads were literally added last night, and as you
saw, we have proof that they’ve been feeding on the Golden Empire. What should we name our new group of painted
toad Death Sprites? Let me know in the comments! I’ll continue filming these cuties through
the week and document their activity closely, to see if they will go on to successfully
eat all our ants within the Hacienda Del Dorado. It’s great to know that the Golden Empire
looks like they’re well on their way to recovery, as well! So guys, be sure to smash that subscribe button
and bell icon now, so you get notified at every single upload and find out in next week’s
episode how our new Death Fairies prove to be at cleaning up the Hacienda Del Dorado
for our new generation of Golden Empire, and hit the like button every single time, including
now. Plus, the Rhino Beetle Games are fast approaching,
guys, and you won’t want to miss that! The games may come sooner than you think! If you’re new to the channel, and want to
catch up on all your AntsCanada Lore, feel free to binge watch this complete story line
playlist here, which traces the origins of all the ant colonies of the ant room, so you
can follow their stories and better appreciate how these ant kingdoms came to be, and why
we love them so much! AC Inner Colony, I have left a hidden cookie
for you here, if you would like to watch some extended play footage of our new painted toads
within the Hacienda Del Dorado. Get a sneak peek into next week’s episode
and get a closer look at these incredible amphibians. They belong to the genus Kaloula and are endemic
to the Philippines, so chances are you may not have seen them before. Check them out! And now it’s time for the AC Question of the
Week! Last week we asked: Why couldn’t we just let the remaining ants
within the Hacienda Del Dorado die out? Congratulations to MasterDhen who correctly
answered: The mites might spread and might
affect other ants in the Ant Room. Congratulations, MasterDhen, you just won
a free e-book handbook from our shop! In this week’s AC Question of the Week, we
ask: What is the name of the
toxin produced by toads? Leave your answer in the comments section
and you could also win a free e-book handbook from our shop! Hope you can subscribe to the channel as we
upload every Saturday at 8AM EST. Please remember to LIKE, COMMENT, SHARE, and
SUBSCRIBE if you enjoyed this video to help us keep making more. It’s ant love forever!

Ant Apocalypse Stopped by a Rhino Beetle

Ant Apocalypse Stopped by a Rhino Beetle


You’ll never believe what actually goes on
in the soil. We humans, as giants, completely miss all
the events, the plot twists, the drama, the miracles, the battles, triumphs, and defeats
that occur every day, deep within the the very earth, that sustains us and is teaming
with life. Take this micro-village of springtails for
instance, which you guys have named the Spring Cleaners, the cleanup crew of the microworld,
busy eating up all the organic bits left behind by other lifeforms of the land, or this baby
millipede which eats up decaying vegetable matter, but don’t get too close; he uses cyanide
as a weapon, and that baby earthworm, feeding on vegetation above ground, a solo detritivorous
mite perhaps searching a mate. For a moment, try to forget your big size
and throw all scale out the window, and imagine this terrestrial world, as a giant forest. It’s called the Hacienda Del Dorado, home
to countless communities of creatures and plants. Those gnats you see there, they’re the vultures
of the land perusing the tree tops. But AC Family, something terrible has happened
to the original rulers of this gorgeous territory. You’re about to see what in a moment. I was admiring this lush kingdom one day,
when my eyes caught focus of this. An ant, of the supercolony, we know on this
channel, as the Golden Empire. She’s alone, and oddly she carries a message
for us. Look! It appears she’s struggling to grapple with
something that is locked onto one of her legs, something red, and clearly causing her much
discomfort. She tries desperately to remove it from her
appendage, to no avail. Guys, turns out, this ant, is one of a few
remaining survivors of what I discovered was a mass holocaust. It’s every ant keeper’s nightmare. This week to my utter horror, I learned that
out of nowhere, an apocalypse has come for our cherished Golden Empire, and worse, there
was nothing I could do to stop it. But, it may surprise you, that there was one
unlikely hero in this entire story, who possibly could. AC Family, you will not believe how a humble
rhino beetle rose to the occasion this week, to become the possible saviour of an entire
Ant Empire, during this ant apocalypse. Please SUBSCRIBE to my channel and hit the
BELL ICON. Welcome to the AC Family! Enjoy. AC Family, I was legit crying this week, when
I saw this. Imagine an ant colony who you watched grow
over the years, an OG supercolony on this channel, within our world of Ant Kingdoms
in the Antiverse, suddenly amidst a mass extinction event. If you’ve been following this channel for
awhile, you have followed the epicness that the Golden Empire, our multi-queen supercolony
of yellow crazy ants, has experienced. From surviving a mite plague, to outsmarting
carnivorous pitcher plants, to keeping an array of pet beast, to even being elected
as the lucky colony to inhabit a Youtube Gold Play Button, these ants were definitely a
triumphant empire and favourite in the Antiverse. But I’m afraid to announce, that the Golden
Empire is officially seeing their end of days. I’ll explain everything, but we need to start
from the beginning. A member of the Golden Empire is wandering
the premise, assumingly in search of some food. She waves her antennae around smelling her
surroundings and the air for the scent of any new roaches that may have dropped from
the skies. There are in fact, several roach carcasses
around her, but for some reason, they’re unfit for her tastes. I watched as she inspected each roach piece
and moved on. In fact, I’ve been placing roaches into the
lands as I always have for years, but I noticed more and more, the ants weren’t eating them. Of course, the Spring Cleaners were loving
this abundance of food, and so were the earthworms which were coming up to the surface to have
a nibble! It was great that the creatures of the soil
were benefiting from all this extra food, but while this abundance in food was great
news for the soil creatures, it pointed out to me that something was indeed very wrong
in this biological food chain. Little did I know something from the soils
were killing the most important creatures of this entire biological kingdom, and it
was killing them, one ant at a time. When I began to notice the ants weren’t eating
as much, and less and less ants were seen foraging above ground, I started to get very
suspicious that something was up. Now, if you saw our last video on this ant
colony, you’ll know they disappeared on us once before, but after watering their lands,
we discovered that they were all just esthivating underground keeping moist during a dry spell. But this seemed different now. The soils were moist, and usually the lands
would be covered in foraging ants at this hour in the night. I only could see one ant now up in the leaves. I decided to prod around and try to agitate
the vegetation and create vibrations in hopes to set the Gold Empire into defense protocol,
so they would come pouring out of their nest entrances to fight me with their formic acid
sprays. I finally decided to dig into the soil a little,
and finally got a small squadron of ants to come out, but AC Family, check out how few
of them there were that emerged. Something very strange was happening, and
I did not expect, what I was about to soon discover. The next morning, I placed food into the territories
as I usually do, but as has been the case these past few weeks, no ants came to feed. Only soil creatures. I tried watering the lands again, to try to
get the Golden Empire to surface like they did before, but again, only the soil creatures
came to surface rejoicing in the moisture. OK, it was time to pull out the checklist
of possibilities as to what in “Thanos: Infinity War” was going on here. AC Family, are you ready for this? I had to see if the ants had possibly escaped? Now as you may or may not know, the Hacienda
Del Droado, like many of my ant farms, is an open top terrarium, which means it lacks
a cover. Ant keepers do this to ensure the ant territories
get proper ventilation, to decrease mold-growth, and access the ant farm easily. A baby powder barrier is applied vertically
and horizontally upside down, to keep the ants inside. This design in particular was made to create
the illusion of a barrier-less ant setup, with its landmarks rising up out of the top
of the tank, but though it looks like there is lots of places the ants could escape and
crawl out, they actually technically can’t as nothing is touching a point of access to
the outside and the ants can’t jump very far. The only place, the ants might be able to
escape was through this chord which powers the water pump and filter, but even that is
covered in baby powder and secured with a baby-powdered stopper keeping the ants from
proceeding up the chord. Ants making it that far fall onto this powdered
platform which is also secured with powdered walls to keep them from climbing further. Ants on this platform end up jumping back
into the Hacienda Del Dorado below. But could they have possibly found a breech
in the barrier that was keeping them in and moved out of my window one night while I was
sleeping? With their sheer numbers and nomadic tendencies,
this was definitely a possibility! But then I noticed some movement below. Alright! It seems the rains had caused some ants to
emerge to feed from my roach. At last! There clearly wasn’t as much ants as there
used to be, but it was nice to see at least some ants coming out to eat. And AC Family, that’s when I saw it. Look! This ant carried a something on its leg and
it was impeding its movement. A mite. Back when this colony had mites before, it
never affected their movement and general life processes. The mites they dealt with before were likely
phoretic mites, harmless hitchhikers wanting delivery to greener pastures. In fact, the reason this whole Hacienda Del
Dorado terrarium was created was to help those phoretic mites fall off, and it worked in
the end. But this time, things were different. And if you look carefully, although the ants
are hanging around this roach, it doesn’t seem like they have that same healthy appetite
to dive in and feast like they usually do. These mites were definitely affecting our
ants in a very negative way. AC Family, I’m afraid to announce that the
Golden Empire has been struck for the very first time, with every ant-keeper’s fear – parasitic,
blood-sucking mites. Some of the ants appeared mite-free, but many
of them carried the mite killers. Now, this is bad because every ant keeper
knows that once you find these blood-sucking mites on your ants, it is a death sentence,
and the killings happen quick. My heart sank, when the reality of situation
began to sink in. We found our answer and there was nothing
we could do to stop it. What we were witnessing here, AC Family, was
the extermination and final days of the Golden Empire. As weird as it sounds, I began to cry for
the ants. It was time to say goodbye to the supercolony
we grew to love, over the years. My house keeper and I began to take apart
the Hacienda Del Dorado, starting with the Golden Springs, which ironically were installed
as a population regulator. As I began to clean up the lands, again, with
little to no ants in sight, I started to wonder what I was going to do with the Hacienda Del
Dorado. Was I going to just throw the entire terrarium
away? Based on 98,000 of you who voted in a community
tab poll, most of you felt the Jawbreakers, our booming colony of trap-jaw ants, deserved
to inherit the Hacienda Del Dorado seeing as they were doing so well in their little
kingdom, and were ready to expand. But after discovering the mites, I knew I
couldn’t do this, because that would be like throwing humans into a zombie pit. The parasitic mites would then go on to annihilate
the Jawbreakers. But as I was digging around, something pretty
incredible happened. Check this out! I hit a vein! A gold vein. I must have hit some chamber where a lot of
Golden Empire were hiding out. It seems a lot of the ants were still brooding
in hidden chambers within the soil. It was nice to see this many ants congregating
in a single place. Though some of the ants had mites attached
to them, it looked like many of the ants were still quite mobile, energetic, and otherwise
seemingly healthy. I moved the soil around and scanned the premises. I needed to see if I could locate any of the
8 queens. Do you see any? I continued to move more soil around and sure
enough, a queen! There she is sprinting away! I continued looking, and to my delight, guys,
look! Another queen dashing away! I stopped for a moment to take a look at this
queen. Thankfully, she was mite-free. Amazing to think that her eggs helped fuel
the Golden Empire, along with her other 7 fellow queens, for years. Her workers each only lived for a couple months,
but queens like her can live as long as a few decades, and it was her steadfast role
as egg-layer over time, that lead to the Golden Empire being one of the most successful and
glorious ant colonies I’ve ever owned in my life. It was heart-warming to see one of her workers
coming to her side to tend to her. Soon another worker came to join the royal
entourage. And then a third. The sight was so moving for me, and suddenly
made me realize why I had fallen in love with the world of ants in the first place. These worker ants, who’d been through a lot,
were comforting their queen amidst crisis befalling their empire. It looked like these worker ants were among
the clean, mite-free group of the survivors, but although their days were numbered, their
home torn up, and hope for survival minimal, they weren’t going to give up. They were the Golden Empire, conqueror of
challenges. Now it was recently discovered that an entire
ant colony harbours collective memories that its individual members can’t possibly store
in their individual brains. I bet now, the colony was tapping into their
history to find ways to survive this mite plague. These ants were determined to fight for life
until the very end, like gladiators championing their Empire’s legacy… And that, AC Family, is when it hit me. Gladiators. OMG! About what I said earlier about there being
nothing we could do to stop the death of the Golden Empire at the hands of the mites…
well, that isn’t entirely true. For those of you who are new to the channel,
meet our rhino beetles. Three males of a fleet of 7 rhino beetle gladiators,
who are slated to compete in an Olympic tournament called the Rhino Beetle Games. Their names are Apollo, Dionysus, and Poseidon. Now upon welcoming them to the world as fully
formed adult beetles, we did notice they carried on their bodies, small gangs of mites. At first, I thought these were maybe bad mites,
but turns out, one of you guys pointed out that they are actually Hypoaspis mites, which
are predatory mites which live in symbiosis on the beetles, feeding on small soil creatures
and more importantly, bad parasitic mites that may want to feed on the beetles’ blood! In fact, Hypoaspis mites are often used by
gardeners to eat undesirable pest insects. So, AC Family, know where I’m going with this? So call me crazy, but what if we could somehow
collect a few of these Hypoaspis mites from our rhino beetles, propagate them, and then
release them into the Hacienda Del Dorado, where the Golden Empire are congregating,
to eat the parasitic mites that are feeding from the blood of our Golden Empire! The idea was insane, but by principle, it
could work right? AC Family, it was time for an important experiment. First, I prepared a water test tube. This test tube was a standard ant test tube
setup with cotton creating a water reservoir which would provide humidity. This setup was going to house a few of our
test subjects for a little while. Now it was time to go into the Hacienda Del
Dorado to collect our subjects. With our test tube, I went in, and collected
three ants. Two of the ants were infected with parasitic
mites and one was mite-free. I’ll explain why the third ant had to be mite-free
in a second. I also went in to collect three more ants
placed in a second test tube setup, again two infected ants and 1 non-infected ant,
so that we had a control group. Hello, Gr. 9 lesson on the scientific method! If this all works out, these six worker ants
were going to be heroes in the history of the Golden Empire. Alright, so now that we had our test subjects,
we now needed the help of one of our beetles, and I knew just who I was going to choose
to partake in this critical experiment. If you look to the left, you’ll see the living
chamber of Apollo, who is buried somewhere in here. Of the three available beetles, I chose Apollo,
because fittingly, he was named after the Greek god of medicine and healing, and also
of plagues, so it was only appropriate to choose him. He was not going to be happy at me pulling
him out, but the fate of our Golden Empire relies on it! I filled up a small dish of water and got
two q-tips. The plan was to go in, get Apollo out, and
try to collect a few Hypoaspis mites from his body. I started to dig, and carefully moved the
soil around until I heard his voice, well stridulation. There he was! As expected, he was very upset at my intrusion. Behold, our mighty gladiator Apollo, small
horns beautiful colour. And now, the possible saviour to deliver the
Golden Empire from doom. I carefully tried to look around Apollo’s
body for mites. I didn’t need a tonne of mites, just a couple
for our experiment. Turning him upside down, I saw them, and quickly
ran the swab to collect. Got it! I picked up one of the test tubes, and carefully
introduced the Hypoaspis mite inside with the ants. The mite instantly bolted into the test tube! This entire process made my heart race a million
miles a minute! I went back to Apollo and swabbed again one
last time, and placed the second mite into the same test tube. The test tube now had two Hypoaspis mites. I placed two inside so that if they were male
and female they could hopefully breed, but we didn’t really need to measure breeding. We just needed to see if the Hypoaspis mites
would feed from the blood-sucking parasitic mites on the ants. Also, the reason I included a mite-free ant
in the mix was to see if the two Hypoaspis mites would feed on the parasitic mites enough
to keep the parasitic mites from breeding and infecting other ants. If the group with the Hypoaspis mites suddenly
end up with the parasitic mites all gone, we know that the Hypoaspis mites would be
an effective biological agent to eradicate the parasitic blood-sucking mites killing
the Golden Empire. I then marked the test tube that contained
the Hypoaspis mites with black tape, and left our control group tapeless. By the end of this experiment having the two
test tubes to compare, will make it easier for us to understand the results. I took both test tubes, inserted a drop of
honey onto the cotton in each, and placed them into a dark drawer, to simulate the soil
conditions underground. And all there was left to do now was pray
to God, that the results of this experiment were favourable. Apollo, completely upset and shaken up, dove
straight into his soils to get away from us. Thank you Apollo, you’ve been a greater help
than you’ll ever understand. Guys, as giants, perhaps we may not see everything
that happens in the soil, but this time, we were going to try to learn enough, to at least
bring salvation to an entire Empire of gold, fighting for the continuation of their throne,
as rulers of the ever-evolving Hacienda Del Dorado. I was going to wait with baited breath for
the results. Alright, AC Family, it’s do or die now! It’s been a crazy week, but I’ll be sure to
let you know the results of our experiment to save the Golden Empire. Let’s hope the Hypoaspis mites prove effective
at eating the parasitic mites on our ants. At this point, it’s our only hope. So guys, be sure to smash that subscribe button
and bell icon now, so you get notified at every single upload and follow this continuing
story, and hit the like button every single time, including now. If you’re new to the channel, and want to
catch up on all your AntsCanada Lore, feel free to binge watch this complete story line
playlist here, which traces the origins of all the ant colonies of the ant room, so you
can follow their stories and better appreciate how these ant kingdoms came to be, and why
we love them so much! AC Inner Colony, I have left a hidden cookie
for you here, if you would like to explore the new Hacienda Del Dorado! I’ve had to remodel, completely removing the
Golden Springs seeing as we no longer need a population limiter anymore, so go check
out what the Hacienda Del Dorado looks like now! And now it’s time for the AC Question of the
Week! Last week we asked: Why are the Hypoaspis mites we see
on the beetles a good thing? Congratulations to GAMER X who correctly answered: The mites are beneficial because they eat
small insects such as parasitic mites that suck blood from the beetles. Congratulations, GAMER X, you just won a free
e-book handbook from our shop! In this week’s AC Question of the Week, we
ask: Why did I choose Apollo to
participate in our experiment? Leave your answer in the comments section
and you could also win a free e-book handbook from our shop! Hope you can subscribe to the channel as we
upload every Saturday at 8AM EST. Please remember to LIKE, COMMENT, SHARE, and
SUBSCRIBE if you enjoyed this video to help us keep making more. It’s ant love forever!