Before I start my story, I want to inform that it was under no circustances my intention for something like that to happen.
I'm writing this because I never seen such a behavior between parasitic queens. In previous years I caught "Formica rufa" queens and I put a few together in the same test tube setup and they stayed together even weeks without any strange behavior.
I made this post only because I know that there are people out there interested in the behavior of parasitic queens, and what happened to me was strange.
Warning! Explicit aggresive queens behavior explained.
Again, what happened was not intended. I never wrote something like this, so I'm not sure if the warning is OK or not, but I want to be as sure as possible that there won't be any problems.
I need to mention that on all the time I watched them, it was like watching a horror movie. The story is mostly based on two queens.
So, last week I caught 5 queens and I didn't know what genus or specie they were. On the genus I had a feeling that they might be "Lasius sp." but not sure.
When I reached home, because I was short on test tubes, I decided to put them together in the same tube so that I can see them better and maybe later to take some photos of them. So, after putting them together, I went to the PC, put the test tube close to the monitor, and did some google search. In about 10 minutes I saw one queen that was trying to shed her wings. I thought that was kind of strange. I had many queens but none shed her wings so fast. In a few minutes almost all her wings were shed. Meanwhile, one more queen stratted to do the same. But, after 30 seconds the chaos started. The second queen, that was starting to shed her wings, stopped and started looking for the wingless queen. When she found her, she started attacking the wingless queen fearsome. She grabbed her and in less than a minute the wingless queen stopped moving and the killer queen started again to try and remove her wings.
At the beginning I thought that the killed queen was dead but that was not the fact. After removing her wings, she went back to the so called dead queen and started attacking her again. Then I saw that the so called queen was still alive. In less than a minute the queen was decapitated. Poor thing. And that's not all. Even thought the head was separated from the body, the killing queen kept attaking the body and strangely enough the body was still fighting back. It was the most horrendous sight possible since I started ant keeping. I don't know how much this kept going, maybe 15-20 minutes, but for me it seemed like ages. I also saw that meanwhile the severed head was carried by another queen. The head too moved it's antennae for another 10-15 minutes. I was so shocked that I didn't know what to do.
I don't know how, but only after everything ended I realised that I even took pictures.
After that everything else went back to normal, but in two days all queens were dead. And no, they didn't kill each other.
I realised what specie they are when I saw them fighting.
I have also some pictures, but I'm not sure if it's OK and safe to share them. I'm even unsure if this post is OK. I'll wait for antdude's reply.
Long live the queens!