Connected on 2011-01-06 09:00:00 from Williamston, MI, US
- Bugscope Team venting the 'scope, getting ready to place sample...
- Bugscope Team sample is in 'scope and pumping down...
- Bugscope Team good morning Steve; good morning, Forrest! ;)
- Bugscope Team the microscope is pumped down, and I will start making presets in a few minutes. our session starts in about 75 minutes...
- Bugscope Team but in the meantime please let me know if you have any questions
- Bugscope Team Steve I will be back to finish the presets in a few minutes. It is 8 a.m. here.
- Bugscope Team okay I am back at it. do let me know if you have questions
- Bugscope Team can you see me now?
- Teacher hello
- Bugscope Team hi forrest!
- Bugscope Team awesome
- Bugscope Team you have control
- Bugscope Team Please let us know when you have any questions...
- Bugscope Team Feel free to drive the microscope -- you now have control of a $600,000 electron microscope.
- Bugscope Team this is the edge of one of the claws of the Monarch butterfly
- Bugscope Team you can see a couple of different types of pollen
- Bugscope Team the spikey pollen grains and the ones that look like deflated footballs
- Bugscope Team you can change the magnification to go up or down. if you go down, you can see where you are on the claw
- Bugscope Team did you know that insects have claws? ;)
- Bugscope Team claws are used to hold onto their food or plants
- Bugscope Team because all insects have six legs, they may have claws at the end of each of their six legs
- Bugscope Team these are not slides -- these are live images from the scanning electron microscope.
- Teacher Thank you for showing our slides, we are looking at the 1st slide, monarch pollen can you give us more informatin about this slide
Bugscope Team the spiky spheres an the football shapes are pollen grains
- Bugscope Team if you want you can take the magnification down to see where we are
- Bugscope Team you are looking at one of the claws, and if you click Magnification minus, at the top of the screen, as Cate says, you can see where you are.
- Bugscope Team on the top of the image you will see the magnification controls
- Bugscope Team these are two different types of pollen
- Bugscope Team the spikey pollen and the deflated football-shaped pollen
- Bugscope Team you can see the two canoe shapes are the claws
- Bugscope Team now this is Cool! you can see where we were! this is one pair of claws!
- Teacher That is really cool, and the claws look awesome
- Bugscope Team this is the end of the one of the legs of the Monarch butterfly
- Bugscope Team you may choose from any of the presets on the screen to the left of this viewing screen, and if you click on one of those thumbnail images, the microscope will drive to that place
- Teacher claws are used for?
Bugscope Team claws are used by insects much the same way we use our hands -- the grasp things
- Bugscope Team 'to' grasp things
- Bugscope Team be sure to click on another preset and look somewhere else -- there are a lot of samples on here that you sent
- Bugscope Team they have claws on each leg as well
- Teacher why do they only hav e two claws?
Bugscope Team if you click on the honeybee claw/tarsus, you can see that it seems to have more claws
- Teacher So the claws on each leg, help collect food too?
Bugscope Team they can yes
- Bugscope Team for the bugs that eat other bugs it's usually the first 2 legs that hold onto the food
- Bugscope Team like praying mantises
- Bugscope Team there is a tendon inside the shaft of the tarsus (which is what each of the forearm segments is called) that opens and closes the claw
- Bugscope Team this is cool!
- Bugscope Team this is the face of a ladybug!
- Teacher Do lady bugs bite, what portion is posion?
Bugscope Team yes they do bite. They bite with their jaws that you can see near the middle of the face. They are forked and open like a gate
- Bugscope Team as for poison, they are poisonous. They do emit an odor that also makes them taste bad
- Teacher The area of the right, look like a vaccum, are they claws? compound eyes behind them?
Bugscope Team yes it does look like a vacuum nozzle. good eye! That is the maxillary palp, which is used to taste or help manipulate food
- Bugscope Team in the palp are little taste buds called chemosensory setae. Setae (pronounced see-tee) is another name for bug hair
- Teacher Can we flip it over and look at the shell, what can you share about the exosceleton and dots on top
Bugscope Team Sorry but we can't easily flip it around. The insects are in a vacuum sealed chamber in the microscope
- Teacher okay looks like a finger
- Bugscope Team the spots wouldn't be visible either because we are really collecting a topographical image, not a light image. So things like color don't show up
- Bugscope Team a finger with a face :)
- Bugscope Team The background the insect is lying on is double stick carbon tape
- Teacher The exo sc. looks like it covers most of the body parts? Protection?
Bugscope Team yes the exoskeleton shell is very tough to other insects. It is made of chitin-- the same stuff our fingernails are made of
- Bugscope Team I think their main protection is their red/yellow coloring and the dots-- things like that help ward off predators.
- Bugscope Team these are the little taste buds in the palp
- Bugscope Team little hairs that collect chemical information from what they might eat
- Teacher What happens when they get wet?
Bugscope Team they are most likely going to be ok. They have breathing holes they can close so they can hold their breath for a little bit.
- Bugscope Team some water bugs will bring an air bubble down into the water with them that they hold around their abdomen, and they just breathe off that
- Teacher why are some smaller, do they get replaced like our hair? Who has more taste buds humans or insects?
Bugscope Team They don't grow back, but if the insect has another molt it can grow back any lost body parts are hairs
- Bugscope Team the smaller ones might do something else. Maybe their job is to help feel things for the insect since they can't do that very easily with their thick exoskeleton. It's like wearing a suit of armor on their bodies. They can't feel much. But some hairs are connected to nerves underneath that allow them to feel around
- Bugscope Team I would think humans have more. Humans have about 10,000. That one palp didn't look like it had more than 50
- Teacher what can you tell us about this insect?
- Bugscope Team it is a young insect. They sometimes don't look like their adult counterpart (like caterpillars and butterflies). They have simpler structures, like their eyes
- Bugscope Team This insect has simple eyes instead of compound. The simple eyes are the little round dots
- Bugscope Team Simple eyes don't see as well. It also has big jaws- maybe for eating plants
- Teacher can you tell us more about the simple eye?
- Bugscope Team this insect, which we think is a larval true bug, has four or five eyes on each side of its head -- it's like a caterpillar
- Bugscope Team those eyes are called 'stemmata,' and they don't let the insect larva see very well -- they are not as good as compound eyes, for example
- Bugscope Team it's a little desiccated (dried up), meaning its body is soft
- Bugscope Team this little guy does have very fierce looking jaws
- Bugscope Team you can see its six legs, folded in front of its body, to the left of the head
- Bugscope Team the head is large, and that is probably because much of the inside of the head is taken up by muscles that make those jaws work
- Bugscope Team the jaws resemble those of a borer -- one of those insects that burrows into wood
- Bugscope Team Hi Chris!
- Teacher we can't get the chrysalis to show so we are moving on
- Bugscope Team now we see some eyes that work very well
- Guest Hi!
- Bugscope Team here is your honeybee
- Bugscope Team yeah I am sorry it looks like the chrysalis preset is not working. if you'd like I can drive directly to it.
- Bugscope Team now we're on the true bug again
- Bugscope Team you can see its compound eyes, on either side of its head
- Bugscope Team and this! yay this is the coolest!
- Bugscope Team this wasp is the green iridescent insect you sent us
- Bugscope Team very cool
- Bugscope Team this is a tiny blue wasp that Evan, from your class, found and sent
- Teacher Do you know the name?
- Teacher Thank you for showing it from Evan
- Bugscope Team oops sorry as Cate said -- iridescent green
- Bugscope Team we don't recognize the species -- there are thousands of tiny parasitic wasps
- Teacher How long can they live?
Bugscope Team usually they live for several weeks, or one full season, in a temperate region
- Bugscope Team you can see its stinger, which is blunt and scary
- Bugscope Team and you can see its compound eyes, as well as its three ocelli -- the simple eyes that many flying insects have
- Bugscope Team the closest identifying wasp i could find was a type of parasitic wasp that preys on maggots or the pupae of moths and butterflies
- Bugscope Team bees and wasps are both Hymenoptera -- related to ants. and they both have four wings, compared to flies (Diptera), which have two wings.
- Bugscope Team well it's easy to tell apart the bee mimics that are flies. You just look at their antennae. If they are pads- they are flies. If they are stalks- they are wasps/bees
- Teacher What is the center part between the claws?
Bugscope Team that is where the arolium is, or sometimes the pulvillus. either of those helps the insect cling to a surface
- Guest how can you tell the difference between a wasp and a bee?
Bugscope Team we cannot always tell, and sometimes we get bee mimics that are actually flies
Bugscope Team bees tend to be fatter and are seen around flowers. wasps are skinnier and are seen around people's trash- like when you go to the zoo and you see a bunch of wasps around the eating area
- Bugscope Team you can see that this claw is different -- it has more 'tines' than that of the Monarch
- Bugscope Team I just recentered this because it had drifted since we made the preset
- Bugscope Team the bee tongue is called a glossa, and it is long and flexible
- Bugscope Team you can see what looks like a mold spore on the shaft
- Teacher Is that pollen on one side?
- Bugscope Team it looks like pollen, but because there is a lot of mold on this bee, and because the spikes are very short, we think it is more likely a mold spore than a pollen grain
- Bugscope Team if you take the magnification down from here you can see where we are on the face of the bee
- Bugscope Team Bees will also use their tongues like a cat to lick their fur to keep themselves clean. They'll also lick and clean each other and their mother the queen.
- Bugscope Team bees are very hairy, and they appear to have fur
- Teacher Looks like a giant insect from James and the Giant Peach
- Bugscope Team the hairs are actually setae, which can have a number of functions including taste, feel, and hot/cold sensing
- Bugscope Team this is the head of the mealworm
- Teacher We fed our apples and bran, is that a good source of food for them?
- Bugscope Team people often do use wheat bran
- Teacher Some of our mealworms didn't turn into a beetle, any suggestions why?
Bugscope Team not sure -- maybe they were picky eaters, and maybe the temperature changes in the room affected them. it is hard to tell
- Bugscope Team you can see the jaws in the center of the face, and you can see where it once had very short antennae, I think, that are broken off
- Teacher How many legs do the MW have? We thought we saw more like a centepede?
Bugscope Team because they are insects, they have only 6 true legs. but they may also have what are called prolegs
- Bugscope Team this is like a caterpillar, and it will eventually turn into a darkling beetle. caterpillars have six legs plus a number of matched pairs of prolegs that have little hooks within them called crochets
- Teacher We also noticed they have a stong scent to smells, thoughts
Bugscope Team not sure about that. did you change the bedding often?
- Teacher What can you tell us about your job, why did you decide to do this, what is your most unusual insect found?
- Bugscope Team we are microscopists. And I decided to do this because I get to work with lots of areas of science. We do bugscope on average 2 times a week. The rest of the time we help users image their samples or we image samples for companies
- Bugscope Team I think some of the coolest insects are weevils, but I also kind of like owlfly larvae, and I think leafcutter ants are remarkable. leafcutter ants are farmers; they grow different kinds of mold/fungus to eat
- Bugscope Team An interesting insect we once received from a school was a giant millipede (which aren't really insects). At first it didn't seem very interesting, but then when we put it in the microscope for the school we found it was covered in mites
- Bugscope Team we like what we do, and it is always a little different
- Bugscope Team sj has a background in biology and english and I have a background in physics
- Teacher Thank you for all your dialog and information
- Bugscope Team we get to see lots of cutting-edge research -- we work with biologists but also materials people, as well as sometimes even architects
- Bugscope Team Thank You!
- Bugscope Team I am racing to a meeting...
- Bugscope Team This was fun, and we hope to see you back next year!
- Bugscope Team Bye!
- Bugscope Team you can see your chat and images from today on your member page found at https://bugscope.beckman.illinois.edu/members/2010-111