UOCraft.com
Tools for merchants, crafters, gardeners, tamers – Ultima Online

Naturalist Quest

The Naturalist Quest (aka The Study of the Solen Hive) requires you to study ant colonies for the local town naturalist. In return for your detailed note taking, you will be rewarded with rare colored seeds that can be grown into fantastic pink, aqua, magenta, or fire colored plants by gardening.

Since you’ll be spending some time in the ant tunnels, it would be wise to first become a friend of the ant colony. Complete the Solen Matriarch Quest (the same quest that provides translocation powder). This will make you a friend of the hive, and will prevent worker ants from attacking you during your nest studies.

First, visit any Naturalist. You’ll find them in most every library in the land. You can speak to Mike the Naturalist, or in my case, I prefer Gavin the Naturalist in the West Britain Library. Make note of which Naturalist you visit, as you will need to return to the same one to report your findings.

Naturalist in Britain

The Naturalist will offer you an opportunity to complete a Study of the Solen Hive. To complete the quest, you will need to visit each of 4 egg nests within the Solen Hive. The nests can be visited in any order. The storyline has you scribbling notes on your parchment, but in reality, you just need to stand quietly near the nests for about 30 seconds while the fiction plays out.

Nest #1: The first ant hole leading to a nest can be found west of Trinsic at 102° 28′ S, 25° 52′ E. Check your local rune library; they may have runebooks with marked runes to the ant holes.

Ant Hole 1

Double-click the hole to jump inside.

Regarding monsters and other foul baddies: Chances are, you can outrun most monsters you will encounter in the Solen Hives. If you’re a friend of the colony, the solen worker ants and solen warrior ants will not bother you:

Solen Worker Ants

The Ant Lion, though, can be nasty – they’ll eat you for a snack if you aren’t careful. Just keep running!

Ant Lion

The first nest is a bit of a hike from the ant hole. Start running from the bottom left of this map. Jump into the ant hole at the end of the first line, then proceed from bottom to top in the second tunnel until you reach the nest.

Map 1

Nest 1

When you reach the nest, you will hear yourself exclaim out loud, “A-ha!” Stand still for 30 seconds or so. You’ll hear scribbling on parchment, and when your studies are complete, you’ll receive a message to that effect. If you move around or fight monsters while studying, your concentration will be disrupted and you may have to start over again.

Studying Notes

Once your studies are complete, recall or journey out of the ant tunnels (or go back the way you came), then head to the next location, or to Minoc if completing the quest on foot.

Nest #2: The second ant hole is south of Minoc at 75° 40′ N, 90° 21′ E.

Ant Hole 2

Jump into the hole, and away we go! Start at the top right and proceed down to an ant hole, then from bottom to top in the left-hand tunnel.

Map 2

Nest 2

Study until you can study no more! Then, leave the tunnels and head for the third ant hole.

Nest #3: The third ant hole is located south of Yew at 15° 7′ N, 41° 41′ W.

Ant Hole 3

Wash… rinse… repeat. Are you sensing a trend yet? Jump into the ant hole then run to the third nest. This one is a straight shot. Hang out for a while, study the nests, then be on your merry way.

Map 3

Nest 3

Last time! (Unless… we’ll get to that later). Head out of the tunnels via your favorite transportation method and make your way to the fourth ant hole.

Nest #4: The fourth ant hole is located south of the road that runs to the east of the Chaos Shrine at 71° 6′ N, 28° 11′ E. This is the final nest to study – unless you get ambitious and tackle the mysterious fifth hole that even the Naturalist doesn’t know about!

Jump into the ant hole and run to the fourth nest.

Map 4

Nest 4

Study the nest for the required 30 seconds or so, then head out of the tunnels.

Decision Time: At this point, you have a decision to make. You can return to the Naturalist that you visited initially and claim your reward – a rare pink, magenta, or aqua seed for gardening:

Magenta SeedPink Seed

Or, you can continue your quest to find the secret 5th solen ant nest! You will be rewarded with a rare fire seed for your efforts. (Note: you will only get one seed from this quest – so if you want a magenta, pink, or aqua seed, stop now and skip the 5th nest. If you want a fire seed, continue on).

Fire Seed

Optional Secret 5th Nest:

In order to find the fifth nest, you need to obtain a Green Thorn:

Green Thorn

Green thorns can be obtained from your local gardener, or by growing your own Bright Green Barrel Cacti or Bright Green Snake Plants. See, gardening is useful!

Take the green thorn to any sandy beach:

Planting a thorn

Plant the thorn in the sand by double-clicking the thorn, then targeting the sand. You will see a message that you’ve pushed the thorn into the sand, and shortly after the sand will collapse and a mysterious hole will appear in the ground!

Image:18_naturalist_plant_a_thorn.JPG

Jump into the hole by double-clicking on it, and you’ll be transported to the mysterious secret ant tunnel.

Mysterious Hole

Run left to the secret ant nest and study it as you did the others:

Map 5

Secret Nest

Upon completion of your note taking, you’ll be excited to bring your findings back to the Naturalist.

Nest 5 Notes

Completion of the Quest:

Head back to the Naturalist where you received your original quest instructions. Talk to him or her, and you will receive your prize – a rare pink, magenta, or aqua seed for completing nests 1-4, or a fire seed for completing all 5 nests.

Congratulations!

You can repeat this quest multiple times to earn more seeds.