"Ant Farm" refers here. For other locations with a similar name, see Ant Place (explanation). Formicarium with AAC nest and talc for the prevention Formicarium or ant farm is a vivarium designed for the study of ant colonies and how ants behave. Those who study the nature of ants are known as anthologists.


Formicarium was originated by Charles Janet, a French entomologist, and polyhistor who had the idea to reduce the three dimensions of an anthill to almost two dimensions between two glass panes. His design was exhibited at the Universelle (1900) exhibition in Paris. Janet's invention was recognized by her promotion to a knight in the Legion of Honor, but she did not obtain a patent or attempt to sell her creation. The first commercially sold formicarium was introduced in 1929 by Frank Eugene Austin (1873–1964), originator and professor at the Thayer Schools of Engineering at Dartmouth College. as well as other patents for its continuous development. Austin includes uniquely painted wooden landscapes of palaces, farms, and other institutions above ground level. In 1956, Milton Levine, originator of Uncle Milton Industries, created his own version of the formic, probably independent of Frank Austin. Levine got the idea when he attended a picnic on July 4. Levine registered the term marijuana for his product and registered it as a trademark Austin may not have used the term; in his patents, the formicary was called an "educational facility" and a "stage insect cage," and in an article in a 1936 magazine about the Austin apparatus, the structure was called a "bird palace." This sign gained significance when Scott Adams used a sentence in the Dilbert comics and received threatening letters from Uncle Milton Industries' lawyers requesting the withdrawal.


Adams mocks the incident in a later comic in which Dilbert asks for a replacement sentence for "a place of useless and disgusting little creatures," to which Dogbert responds with a "law school." Most types of molds available on the market today can be made of acrylic (plastic) or 3D printing. Rather, it is a "sandwich" formicarium because there is no chance of the tunnel collapsing, and it is specially designed to keep the ant queen at work, while the "Milton" nests are only designed to buy space for ant workers. A "sandwich" formicary is usually a transparent box made of glass or plastic, made of tin, to see the tunnels and openings created by the ants and study their behavior. The filler material is usually soil, clay, sand, vermiculite, other mineral particles, or sawdust. Gel-containing formicaria act as a filler material and have a food ingredient. However, they do not provide enough shelter and food for ants in the long run, and in some cases, ants can actually poison them.

They contain sugar as an agar plus preservatives.

Most gels are blue.

Other types of umakarton are gypsum, autoclaved aerated concrete (AAC), or simply without a medium

Gypsum nests can be made by placing model clay on a glass plate in the form of tunnels and rooms. The gypsum is poured into a mold, and when the gypsum is dry, the clay is detached, and the remaining structure can be used for the ant house. Ants of this type of formicary are very easily recognizable. Immediate formicary can be present in any container, with the ants remaining in wet tubes or other small containers.

This also ensures better visibility.

The formicarium can be designed to stand free and not be closed or covered like a vivarium. The free-standing design does not need high walls and decks but relies on barriers to keep ants in place.

Having ants in the formicary can be a problem.

Many substances are used to repel ants, including leakage oil, Vaseline, or liquid PTFE, which are applied to the formicary side to prevent leakage, as most species of ants cannot run in this reputation. Nevertheless, some species of ants may build bridges over waste or dust fire to escape, while for other species, some individual ants may walk on dust without impedance. Formicowners are likely to use two or more security measures. Another way to prevent leakage is to place the entire formicary in a shallow container of water that will create a ditch. Some ant owners choose to place their ants in the "exterior of the test tube" in front of the formicary, as they can comfortably and safely stay in the test tube in the colony while searching in place.


In addition to the obvious need for the formic and the outside world (A separate vessel, often decorated similarly to the outside world, where ants look for food.), Ants need certain conditions to thrive. First, almost all ants, with the exception of a few branching nesting species, cannot survive without a source of moisture in their nest. This can be done in many ways; Some nests are made of naturally absorbent material, such as gypsum, others have a sponge or cotton wool that becomes water-like need be, and some still have a reservoir of water that evaporates over time. Most ants also appreciate the heat source; because the ants are cold-blooded, their colonies grow harder the warmer their nest. The heating cable is the favorite method of many antlers, but heat lamps, heating pads, and rooms without air conditioning are good alternatives. Many antlers hide their ants in a dark place so that they are not stressed (ants usually live underground and run from the light of their nest, which signals a collapse) because most species lose their sensitivity to light after constant exposure to light. While light control can be a useful tool when moving colonies to new habitats, the benefits of ants nonethelessobservation and more easily monitored far outweighs this, especially when more effective alternatives, such as physical disturbance to or partial disassembly of the formicarium, exist.


It is often illegal to send live ant queens to state lines without permission, and most ant farms sold in the United States do not have queens. Professional anthills and suppliers can only send ants within the state where they live. In the European Union, some domesticated species are protected, and it is illegal to own, store, buy or sell these ants or damage their nests. Unlike reptiles and spiders, there are no laws on the ownership, storage, purchase, or sale of tropical ants. Most formicaries are designed to inhabit the ant queen; Professional ant shops and suppliers often sell their colonies to queens.