Connected on 2012-02-23 09:00:00 from Currituck, North Carolina, United States
- Bugscope Team sample is pumping down
- Bugscope Team we are starting to make presets...
- Bugscope Team good morning!
- Bugscope Team no stinger
- Teacher Good morning from Mrs. Metger's second grade class at Moyock Elementary School!
- Bugscope Team Mrs Metger what time are we connecting?
- Teacher I have time scheduled for you from now until 10:00am. We are excited and ready to see some awesome insect adaptations!
- Bugscope Team I had us for 9 to 10 our time but will hurry through my setup
- Bugscope Team please go ahead and let us know when you have questions
- Teacher Super! My students will be asking questions and they will also be "driving" the SEM when you are ready!
- Teacher Here is our first question.
- Bugscope Team this is a leafhopper
- Teacher Jamie asks, "Is a tarantula an insect?"
Bugscope Team Tarantulas are arachnids -- they are a type of spider. They are arthropods but not insects.
- Teacher Lauren asks, "When was the SEM made?"
- Teacher Robert asks, "How long can Monarch butterflies fly?"
Bugscope Team Monarch butterflies can fly for hundreds of miles, but they have to take breaks on the way.
- Bugscope Team Monarchs can actually fly over the ocean, so they are capable of staying in the air for more than a few days at a time
- Bugscope Team these are the mandibles -- the jaws -- of a large wasp
- Bugscope Team wasps are insects, and they are related to ants
- Bugscope Team spiders have eight legs, and they have the head and thorax in one fused part called the cephalothorax
- Teacher Alexis asks, "Where do you get the bugs?"
Bugscope Team Alexis my mother sends me bugs, which can sometimes be disappointing if I was thinking she might be sending food.
- Bugscope Team we collect insects ourselves, from our homes, and from outdoors, and people give us insects as well
- Teacher Jacob asks, "Why do killer bees kill people?"
Bugscope Team killer bees are very aggressive in protecting their nests, and they can attack people in large numbers. it is the large numbers of angry bees that overwhelm people
- Bugscope Team this is the compound eye of the ant
- Bugscope Team a compound eye has many lenses, and each of the bubbles we see is a lens, called an ommatidium
- Teacher Lina asks, "What is your favorite bug?"
Bugscope Team I really like weevils, and I like leafhoppers, and I like ticks, which are not insects
- Bugscope Team you will notice that the insects we look at have tiny 'hairs,' called setae, on the suface of their bodies
- Bugscope Team insects do not have bones, like we do; instead they have their skeleton on the outside, like a shell
- Teacher Chris asks, "How do honeybees make honey from pollen?"
Bugscope Team honeybees make honey from the nectar that they collect from flowers; it's the sweet sugary stuff that attracts them to the flowers. at the same time they cannot help but collect pollen as well
- Bugscope Team I should say that bees also use pollen, but that is to feed their young, and it is mixed with honey in what is called bee-bread
- Teacher Andrew S. asks, "Are worms insects?"
Bugscope Team worms are invertebrates, like insects, meaning that they do not have a backbone, but they are not insects
- Teacher Connor asks, "Do wasps have a lens on their eyes like the lens that ants have?"
Bugscope Team Connor they have lots more lenses, usually, than ants. They also have three 'simple eyes' on the top of their heads, called ocelli, that help them orient themselves with where the light is coming from so they don't get lost
- Teacher Trent asks, "How come the SEM is so big?
Bugscope Team The SEM has lots of electronics in it -- it is a very complicated instrument. It also uses two computers. Another thing that makes it large is that it has to have a vacuum system, and several different kinds of pumps to run it, and it has to be cooled by water. it also has an electron gun that is fairly tall, and an emission chamber to hold that
- Teacher Andrew B. asks, "Why do people put bugs in cigar boxes?"
Bugscope Team probably to keep them from getting broken or smashed -- they are so pretty and fragile as well
- Teacher Sarah asks, "How do you operate the SEM?"
Bugscope Team Sarah it is really pretty easy to start out, and then you learn more and more tricks that help you make the images look good.
- Bugscope Team we have the SEM set up so that you can operate it from your school, but we have a few other things to do to ensure that it works well for you.
- Teacher Aidan W. asks, "Why do dung beetles roll up poop and put it in the nest with their babies?"
Bugscope Team they are very good recyclers, and what is waste to some animals contains nutrients that the dung beetles can feed upon. to us it sounds gross, but they help break down waste, which is helpful to everyone
- Teacher Breanna asks, "Are snakes insects?"
Bugscope Team snakes are reptiles, and they have a backbone, so they are also called vertebrates, like we are
- Teacher Emma asks, "How did you first get interested in this job?"
Bugscope Team Emma I started out doing transmission electron microscopy, which lets you see inside cells at very high magnifications. I was working with colorful frogs and other amphibians, trying to understand where the colors came from.
- Teacher What is the "stuff" between the wasp antenna hairs?
Bugscope Team there is a lot of dirt on this wasp, and you can also see placoid sensillae, which we think help pick up chemical scents in the air. some of them are mechanosensory, however, letting the wasp feel how its antennae are moving
- Teacher Alexis T. asks, "Why do lady bugs have spots? Is it because it makes them look like they have extra eyes?"
Bugscope Team that is one reason, and the spots may also help get them noticed. ladybugs taste bad, so their bright colors help alert predators that they are not good to eat
- Teacher Jasmine asks, "How do ants walk upside down?"
Bugscope Team they have tiny setae between their claws that are sticky and help them cling to surfaces
- Teacher Spencer asks, "Are there such things as army ants?"
Bugscope Team yes there are -- they move in huge colonies, and they can be dangerous to anything that gets in their way and cannot move away
- Teacher Andrew B. asks, "Why are bugs related to crabs and lobsters?"
Bugscope Team some of what we call 'bugs' are not insects but crustaceans, which is what crabs and lobsters are. so, for example a pillbug is not an insect (it doesn't have six legs), but it is a crustacean. Pillbugs even have gills.
- Teacher Lina asks, "What adaptations do ants have?"
Bugscope Team ants have different adaptations even in the same colony that make them suited to particular jobs. leafcutting ants have large heads to hold all of the muscles they need to cut leaves, and they have long legs that allow them to pick up larger pieces of leaves.
- Teacher Connor asks, "Why do male stag beetles fight over female stag beetles?"
Bugscope Team they probably don't think about it this way, but they are driven to produce young, so they want to mate and have eggs that will carry on into future generations of stag beetles
- Teacher Emma asks, "Why do bugs live in Antarctica?"
Bugscope Team they will live anywhere there is food and they can eat and thrive. but not many insects are able to live in Antarctica.
- Teacher Alexis T. asks, "What do lady bugs eat? Do they eat fallen leaves?"
Bugscope Team they are actually predators, and they especially like to eat aphids
- Teacher Jacob asks, "Why are black widows so deadly? My babysitter got bit by a black widow on her leg when she was six."
- Teacher Alexis is our driver and she was wondering if there are scales on the wing of this insect.
Bugscope Team flies, except for mosquitoes, generally do not have scales on their wings, but sometimes we find them there if they have been collected with butterflies, for example
- Teacher She noticed that it looks like there is a rip in the wing.
Bugscope Team yes there is a rip in the wing, but it happened after the fly died
- Teacher Jamie asks, "Are bees an insect?"
Bugscope Team yes they are! they have a head, and a thorax, which is what all of the legs are connected to, like the trunk portion of a human body, and they have six legs, two antennae, and an abdomen
- Teacher Alexis sees that the hairs look really big closeup even though they are really small.
Bugscope Team some of the hairs, which we often call 'setae,' are larger, and some are quite small, and we might instead called them 'microsetae.' They are important to insects in helping them sense their environment.
- Teacher Robert asks, "How many miles per hour do butterflies fly?"
Bugscope Team I read that the top speed of a butterfly is 12 miles per hour; moths are said to be able to fly twice as fast.
- Teacher Alexis T. sayd that she never knew that this bug had hairs. She thought that it was their natural color.
- Teacher Breanna asks, "How long can ladybugs fly?"
Bugscope Team they get tired and do not fly for more than a few minutes at a time, and usually even less
- Teacher Alexis T. notices that maybe one of the legs is broken.
Bugscope Team yes I am sorry -- that happens, sometimes we do it ourselves but usually not on purpose
- Teacher Aidan W. asks, "Why are bugs so scary?"\
Bugscope Team the more you see them the less scary they are. they are really pretty cool because they do a lot of the same things we do but in a quite different way. their adaptations are what allow them to fit into the niche they live in.
- Teacher Lauren asks, "Does a spitter bug spit?" She is looking an insect field guide.
Bugscope Team like a spittle bug? they spit plant sap and make it into a kind of froth that protects them
- Teacher Jasmine asks, "How do you know which one is the queen ant?"
Bugscope Team it's the biggest one, usually, and you will rarely ever see it. it has wings when it is young, but when it settles deep into the nest it loses them
- Teacher We see a black dot on the cricket claw and wondered if it was piece of dirt or the claw got chipped off.
Bugscope Team I am sitting at the microscope and just changed the focus, which is easier to do right here... it looks like some kind of dirt
- Bugscope Team now we are looking at the wasp's compound eye, and we see lots of ... what shapes are those?
- Teacher Andrew S. asks, "How close up does SEM go?"
Bugscope Team we can go to a million times but it does not look good that high; the best we can do and get publishable images is about 200,000x.
- Bugscope Team wasps can have as many as 17,000 ommatidia in one compound eye
- Bugscope Team this is some plant material that is stuck to the surface of the eye
- Bugscope Team here the ommatidia do not all look like hexagons
- Teacher It looks like one of the legs of the insect ripped off!
Bugscope Team maybe! it is very small and looks like a fiber to me
- Bugscope Team this looks like a piece of plant fiber, and looks like SJ agrees
- Teacher Lauren asks, "How do butterflies survive?"
Bugscope Team one thing that helps butterflies survive is their scales -- the scales on their wings, which seem like powder to us. If a butterfly flies into a spiderweb, the scales stick to the web but the butterfly can slip out.
Bugscope Team often their colors will help butterflies camouflage as well.
Bugscope Team also some butterflies are poisonous, like the monarch. Monarch butterflies eat from the milkweed plant, which is poisonous to a lot of creatures. This makes the monarch poisonous too. Because of this some spiders will know to just cut them free from their webs
- Teacher Jasmine asks, "How many years can a queen bee last until it dies?"
Bugscope Team they can live for up to 5 years
- Bugscope Team here you can see that the fruitfly has tiny setae in between the facets of its compound eye
- Teacher Jamie asks, "Do you like your jobs?"
Bugscope Team we like our jobs a lot. We don't just do bugscope, though that alone is fun. We work in a laboratory with a lot of different microscopes. We get to see a lot of different technologies because of it. It never gets boring around here
- Bugscope Team the setae we see help the fruitfly sense touch and wind, and especially the direction of the wind
- Teacher Robert asks, "How are spiders, praying mantis and fire ants like butterflies?"
Bugscope Team they are all arthropods, which means that they have jointed bilaterally symmetrical bodies, but otherwise they are different.
- Teacher Hi Joe!
- Guest Entomologist Hi
- Bugscope Team here you can see that the caterpillar has five eyes on this side of its head, called 'stemmata.'
- Bugscope Team Hi Joe!
- Teacher Could you take a photo of this? Cool!
Bugscope Team which was that? sorry -- I was typing...
Bugscope Team it was of the eye I believe
- Teacher Alexs Tulli asks, "How many eggs can a lady bug lay?"
Bugscope Team they can lay up to 50 eggs
- Guest Entomologist I think that really varies with the species of ladybugs
- Teacher The pic of the fruit fly eye with the hairs.
Bugscope Team okay we can do that after this session
- Guest Entomologist if i had to guess i would guess high hundreds
- Teacher Jamie asks, "How many bugs do you collect a day?"
- Bugscope Team ladybugs are thought to lay both fertile and infertile eggs so that the larvae that hatch have something to eat
- Teacher Breanna asks, "Are black ants and red ants poisonous?"
Bugscope Team some of each type can be poisonous -- there are so many ant species
- Guest Entomologist that depends on how you go about collecting your insects, depending on the trap, you can get very little or a lot in a day.
- Guest Entomologist I have had traps with zero bugs and others with hundreds
- Bugscope Team this is the face of the caterpillar, and you can see things on its face that look like spinnerets; some caterpillars produce silk, like a spider
- Teacher Lauren asks, "What bugs do you have?"
Bugscope Team Lauren it varies with us because we use them up for Bugscope; we don't use them more than once
- Teacher Alexis L. asks, "Why do butterflies have to have special scales on their wings to fly?"
Bugscope Team the scales are much like feathers, on a bird's wing, and they need enough of them to get 'lift' in the air
- Teacher Jacob asks, "Why are queen termites so big when they are pregnant?"
- Bugscope Team to a flying insect, the air feels very thick, like water does to us
- Teacher How much time is left for us?
Bugscope Team Joyce because we were planning to start at 9 our time, we actually have another 50 minutes.
- Guest Entomologist their abdomen is enlarged from the number of eggs in there
- Teacher Lauren asks, "Why do flies like our food?"
Bugscope Team probably, in part, because we often eat sweet things; many flies have sponging mouthparts and use them to dissolve the food so they can suck it up
- Teacher You have made 19 second graders very happy and cheering!
Bugscope Team awesome!
- Bugscope Team that is great news!
- Teacher Trent asks, "How big is a queen bee?"
Bugscope Team they vary in size but can be two inches long
- Teacher Andrew B. asks, "Can we see a germ?"
Bugscope Team we can see germs -- like bacteria -- if they are there
- Guest Entomologist they can vary a lot in size, some are tiny and can be smaller than some ants, and others are huge like horse flies
- Teacher Emma asks, "How big are flies?"
Bugscope Team flies vary in size from quite small -- some of the smallest insects can be flies that are less than a millimeter long
- Teacher Robert asks, "Why do caterpillars eat milkweed?"
Bugscope Team Monarch butterfly caterpillars eat milkweed because the toxins in it protect them from predators
- Bugscope Team Monarch caterpillars do not get poisoned by eating milkweed, whereas it would be very bad for us.
- Teacher We may have a disruption in our computer link...we will keep going in the meantime.
Bugscope Team uh oh! things look good from here!
- Bugscope Team this is special salt from a Wendy's restaurant
- Teacher Jamie asks, "Are water spiders an insect?"
Bugscope Team water striders are insects, but spiders that can walk on the water are arachnids. if they have eight legs they are not insects.
- Teacher Alexis T. asks, "How could a ladybug be a beetle?"
- Bugscope Team salt from other restaurants is not as cool
- Bugscope Team ladybugs are also known as lady beetles
- Guest Entomologist it's a beetle because the forewings have been odified into a hard shell
- Guest Entomologist ladybug is actually a misnomer
- Guest Entomologist the technically correct name is ladybird beetle
- Bugscope Team that basically means beetles have a pair of sheathed wings
- Teacher Hi to Cate and where is Scot?
Bugscope Team Scot is SJ and Chaos actually
- Bugscope Team haha
- Guest Entomologist i think it has something to do with a mark on the underside of their wings
- Guest Entomologist the question mark butterfly has a mark that distinguishes it from the comma butterfly
- Guest Entomologist otherwise they are pretty similar
- Teacher Andrew S. asks, "What is the difference between the comma butterfly and the question butterfly?"
Bugscope Team a comma butterfly has white markings on the underside of the wings that look like a comma; a question mark butterfly has a series of marks on the hindwings that resemble a question mark
- Teacher Aidan W. asks, "Everyday looking at bugs, do they ever freak you out?"
Bugscope Team we get used to it, and we don't get to do this every day, so it is still fun!
- Teacher Jamie comments, "Bugscope rules!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
Bugscope Team Thank you, Jamie!
- Teacher Connor asks, "What is the difference between a millipede and a centipede?"
Bugscope Team centipedes are usually flattened and millipedes are more round. Each millipede segment has 2 pairs of legs, while the centipede has 1 pair per segment. The millipede has no venomous legs while the centipede does
- Guest Entomologist caterpillars also have legs, although their legs are smaller
- Teacher Trent asks, "How can a bee and a flower be partners?"
Bugscope Team the flower attracts the bee with its color, sometimes, and also with its scent, sometimes. the bee knows it will be able to feed on nectar from the flower, but there is also pollen in the flower that sticks to the bee. as the bee visits other flowers, it spreads pollen around, and other flowers get pollinated by the pollen that they did not produce.
- Guest Entomologist inch worms for example have a characteristic movement where they steady themselves with their prolegs stretch out straight and then pull the back part of their body towards the front to inch forward
- Teacher Breanna asks, "How long do caterpillars walk until they turn into a butterfly?"
Bugscope Team it depends, of course, but maybe 4 to 6 weeks
- Guest Entomologist oh haha i missed a word in that question, thanks scott
- Teacher We have noticed that a lot of the bugs have hair.
Bugscope Team they use those hairs to help them sense what is going on around it. They are connected to nerves that are underneath their hard and unfeeling exoskeleton. The hairs can do things like sense touch (like cat whiskers) or feel temperature changes or sometimes even taste/smell
- Teacher Alexis T. asks,"How big are ladybugs when they are babies?"
Bugscope Team they are very tiny, but you can see them; then they turn into ugly pupae that are larger than the beetles will be
- Teacher Robert asks, "Why are butterflies in the forests of Mexico?"
Bugscope Team they are there so they can mate, and they can also feed there, plus it is safer
- Bugscope Team caterpillar 'prolegs' have lots of little hooks in them called 'crochets'
- Teacher Jasmine asks, "How long have you been doing this job?"
Bugscope Team I have been doing this job for more than 13 years, and we started Bugscope at the same time I got here.
- Guest Entomologist hey scott this is an aside, but will you be at the lab in the afternoon? i have some ants from jo to drop off.
Bugscope Team yes I will. totally cool.
- Teacher Alexis T. asks, "Why are parent lady bug's larvae close up look blue and yellow?"
Bugscope Team I think that having those alternating colors helps disguise them from predators. I am not sure if they already taste bad, but as adults they are known to taste bad and the red color is a warning that they are not good to eat.
- Teacher Trent asks, "Why does the queen bee have to be queen of the hive?"
Bugscope Team the queen gives the orders to the other bees to keep the hive running. Without her or any other queen the hive will die off.
- Bugscope Team this is where one of the ant's antennae broke off
- Guest Entomologist that's a great question, and i'm not sure we know the answer, but the general reply would be that the queen is in charge so that the workers can focus on gathering food for their young while the queen spends her time and energy on egg laying
- Guest Entomologist this allows social insects like bees, ants and termites to have gigantic colonies as all the individuals are working together, which helps them survive against a number of hazards
- Teacher Connor asks, "Is the treehopper's thorn real or fake?"
Bugscope Team it is a fake thorn that makes it look like part of the tree, but it is part of the body, and as part of the exoskeleton it is hard, but not like a real thorn.
- Guest Entomologist they can probably give you a small nip, but it's nothing more than a tickle to you
- Teacher Alexis T. asks, "Do ladybugs bite? Can you feel it or is the mouth too small?"
Bugscope Team we can feel it when they bite, although it is just annoying. the ladybugs that bite are usually not the common ladybugs but the recent species that have invaded the US.
- Bugscope Team this is the antenna, and we can see that the tip is broken off
- Bugscope Team so cool!
- Teacher Well we will wrap up our session now, could you take a pic of that antenna?
- Bugscope Team sure!
- Bugscope Team http://bugscope.beckman.illinois.edu/members/2011-170
- Guest Entomologist yup, she's right
- Teacher The tip of the antenna is sooo cool. Lauren thinks that the end was broken off.
Bugscope Team Lauren is correct!
- Teacher We think you are very kind to do this; it was awesome!
- Bugscope Team this is really fun for us as well
- Teacher Thank you for letting us do this Bugscope and this was very cool!
- Bugscope Team Thank You for connecting with us today!
- Guest Entomologist thanks for all your great questions, it was fun!
- Guest Entomologist bye!
- Bugscope Team I had copied the url to your member page below...
- Teacher We think where got the bugs was very cool and we think that it was cool to see the bugs up close.
- Teacher We think that it was really cool that we got to use the SEM because we got to see stuff very close and really far.
- Bugscope Team thats great to hear!
- Teacher It was really cool driving the SEM and it was so super when we got to see the different insects!
- Teacher It was fun to hit the plus to make the salt cube go so much closer. We got to see the crystals inside.
- Teacher You are the best scientists in the whole wide world!
Bugscope Team haha Thank You!
- Teacher We think that the Bugscope is so cool. Jamie says he will go on it when he gets home today.
- Teacher Bye everybody. See you next year!
- Bugscope Team we will have another live session Saturday evening...
- Bugscope Team Thank You!
- Bugscope Team Bye!