Carebara Diversa nuptial flights

In tropical Singapore and Malaysia, the personal experience of the author has been that Carebara Diversa alates fly in the months of March to July, and again in October.

Optimal conditions for large flights have been observed meet the all 3 of the following conditions:

1) onset of very heavy downpour in the middle to late afternoon.

2) a period of clear skies or sun for 30mins to an hour before sunset.

3) warm and humid evenings.

For a list of C Diversa / C Affinis nuptial flight hotspots in Singapore, click here.

An alate carebara diversa queen.

Alates collected from a semi large flight.

Unlike in most other species, mating in C Diversa tends to happen on the ground. They are also one of the few species that can easily mate in captivity.

More matings that occurred in March 2018.

Almost immediately after mating, alate queens will shed their wings and become “delate”.

More collections in April 2018.

The “swarm ball”. C Diversa alate queens tend to mate with multiple males. My most successful colonies were founded by queens that mated with a large number of males, to the tune of 5-10 males.

Shedding of wings.

A small number of alate queens may not fully shed their wings after mating. A hypothesis is that their wings and/or flight were damaged during flight or mating.

Personally, I have yet to successfully raise a C Diversa colony from a queen which did not fully shed her wings.

Mated queens which have shed wings may not necessarily be able to successful found colonies.

This is because of the generally Low fertility rates that have been observed in this species.

Read here for tips on successful matings.

And here for successful colony founding tips.

Queens which mate with only 1 or 2 males tend to end up infertile, and their eggs never eventuate into lavae or pupae.