Connected on 2009-09-28 12:30:00
from Bozeman, Mt, US
- 12:21 pm
- TeacherHi guys...this is Brian McGeehan, kids will be coming in about 7 or 8 minutes and it will take a few min. to get them online. Thanks!
- Bugscope TeamWelcome to Bugscope!
- Bugscope TeamWe just completed the presets.
- Bugscope TeamAnd you have control.
- Bugscope Teamthese came from collections but were not well identified
- 12:26 pm
- Bugscope Teamthis is on the true bug, along the side of the thorax
- Bugscope Teamhave seen this on stinkbugs in the past
- TeacherOK....kids are getting logged on
- 12:31 pm
- Bugscope TeamHi all!
- Bugscope TeamWelcome to Bugscope!
- Bugscope Teamlet us know when you have questions, and we will try to answer
- Bugscope TeamRob is an entomologist, and Cate and I have been doing this for awhile so know one or two things
- Studentwhat are we looking at
Bugscope TeamRight now, the legs of an insect - a stink bug, maybe, by the looks of it.
- Bugscope TeamHello Logans, Conner and Caitlin, Kayla and Jordan!
- Bugscope Teamwe are looking at part of a true bug
- Bugscope TeamKesley and Daulton this is the exoskeleton of a true bug
- Studentscot or rob what is an entomologist
Bugscope TeamA scientist who studies insects! :)
- Studenthow much does this micro
- Bugscope Teama true bug is an insect that is usually characterised by its long piercing mouthpart
- Bugscope TeamI was an English major so I am more like an etymologist.
- Studentis the bug a male or female and how do you tell
Bugscope TeamIt's hard to say with this one. Sometimes you can tell female bugs because they're larger - they are filled with eggs! Other times there will be small differences, like the length of the antennae.
- Bugscope TeamMaybe Scott can tell us the etymology of entomology.
- 12:36 pm
- Bugscope Teamwhether or not an insect is male or female depends on the insect.
- Bugscope Teamentomo- means 'cut' or 'notched' and refers to the way insect bodies are segmented
- Studentare the eyes visible right now?
Bugscope Teamno they would be a little further to either side; not sure we can see them on this critter
- Studenton the right side of the head, why are there like black circles with dots it the middle
Bugscope Teamthat's where the bug is rotting a bit
- TeacherHi guys...how do I scroll down to other presets?
Bugscope Teamif you can't see the scrollbar for the presets, try widening the browser window a little bit, otherwise if you have a scrollwheel on your mouse use that
- StudentWhat type of true bug is this?
Bugscope TeamI am not completely sure what kind of bug it is - I didn't get to see these specimens. But I think it may be a stink bug.
- Teachergot it figured out...we will check out another
Bugscope Teamok cool
- Bugscope Teamit could be a stinkbug, we are not sure -- it is little and rounded and actually looks kind of like a bedbug
- 12:41 pm
- Bugscope TeamWe're looking at another bug now - and that's 'bug' in the scientific sense. See how it's mouth is long, like a straw. That's how you tell a bug from other insects.
- Bugscope TeamWe often make insect identification difficult for Rob, who is in a lab elsewhere on campus.
- Bugscope TeamThis guy has some dirty eyes.
- Bugscope Teamthis looks like a bunch of brochosomes on someone's compound eye
- Bugscope Teamthey would look better if we were working closer to the sample. brochosomes are often 300 to 400 nm in diameter; they are very small
- Bugscope TeamThey are actually made by another kind of insect - a leafhopper - but they end up getting all over the place.
- Bugscope Teambrochosomes are tiny waxy pellets produced by leafhoppers, as Rob said
- StudentWhat are brochosomes?
Bugscope TeamThese little whiffleball-like pellets that we can see on the screen.
- Bugscope Teamthey are thought to help the leafhopper keep itself and its eggs from drying out
- Bugscope Teamleafhoppers have what is called a 'self-anointing' behavior in which they spread brochosomes on their bodies
- 12:47 pm
- Studentwhen you said bug didn't you mean hymeptera
Bugscope Teamtrue bugs are hemiptera, yes
- Bugscope Teamoh here we do, just above
- Bugscope TeamExactly - hemipterans! Very good.
- Bugscope TeamYou guys must really know your insects.
- TeacherIs the pollen grain centered?
- Bugscope TeamI moved this for us because it had changed since we made the preset
- Bugscope Teamnow it is; it is so beautiful --- I don't recall having seen one like this before
- Studentwhat are the spikes on the polen grain
Bugscope Teamthe spikes help it stick to (d'oh!) Cate beat me to it
- Bugscope TeamIt reminds me of diatoms, or other plankton. Very cool.
- Bugscope Teami think the spikes usually help the pollen grains stick to things
- Studentwhat is pollen?
Bugscope TeamThey are gametes - sexual cells - released by plants. Takes a pollen grain and a flower to make seeds. Lots of insects eat pollen as a food source, so it ends up on their bodies quite frequently.
- 12:52 pm
- Studentwhat type of insect is a weevil? is it a beatle?
Bugscope TeamNot a Beatle, but a beetle. ;)
Bugscope TeamBut to answer your question a little better, they are beetles whose mouths have been pulled into long snouts.
- Bugscope Teamwhen insects are attracted to pollen they go from plant to plant and end up dispersing it -- they end up doing what the plant wanted, which is to have the pollen fertilize other plants
- Bugscope Teambees normally do this, and when there are no bees to pollinate fruit, there will be no fruit
- Studentwhy does the eye have so many bumps
Bugscope Teamthe bumps are ommatidia -- they are the individual facets of the eye, and they are individual lenses
- Bugscope Teamsome weevils, we have found, have scales, like butterflies, moths, skippers, mosquitos, and silverfish do
- Bugscope Teamyou can see a moth or butterfly scale to the left of the dome-like structure of the compound eye
- Bugscope Teamthe eye is called a compound eye when it has all of those individual facets
- Studentrob or any entropologist what got you interested in insects?
Bugscope TeamI've always thought insects were really cool. And in college I found out that they were good animals to use in research, so very useful to study!
- Bugscope Teaminsects may also have simple eyes, sometimes called ocelli
- Studentwhy does having so many facets help the bug
Bugscope TeamGenerally, because the way the eye is set up: the more facets, the better it can see. Insects will have more if vision is important to them; other insects, like cave creatures, will have very few or none at all.
- 12:58 pm
- Bugscope Teamif you had compound eyes you would have a much improved ability to detect motion
- Bugscope TeamThese are a close-up of the scales that Scott mentioned earlier.
- Bugscope Teamso you could see things that are coming at you more quickly; that is why it is hard to swat flies
- Bugscope Teamand if you had compound eyes you would also likely have much better peripheral vision
- Studentdoes each lense of the eye have its own optic nerve?
Bugscope Teamin a way it does; the brains of flying insects, like fruit flies, have a huge area devoted to visual signal processing
Bugscope TeamYeeess... sort of. Each has a single nerve that runs into the optic lobe, but it is not the bundle of nerves that we call an optic nerve in a human.
- Studentwhat is the purpose of the scales
Bugscope TeamA lot of scales also give color to an insect. For instance, if you removed all the scales from a butterfly wing, it would just be translucent - no color.
- Bugscope Teamif you had scales, and you were small, it would be helpful in getting you out of spiderwebs
- StudentWhy are the ends of each scale so wavy?
Bugscope Teamsometimes they are wavy and sometimes not; I think they also function to increase surface area in flying insects, much like feathers do for birds
- Bugscope Teamyou could leave the scales there and just slip out
- 1:04 pm
- Bugscope TeamRob is correct; scales may impart pigment color as well as structural color to an insect
- Bugscope Teamsometimes when we go way up in mag to see scales, we see tiny pigment granules; in addition, the shape and distance between the ridges can produce colors that don't have to do with pigments
- Bugscope Teamthis is the head of a moth. some insects, including many moths, can see in the ultraviolet wavelengths of light -- where humans do not see
- StudentHow big is the microscope, how much does it cost, and what is the max zoom?
Bugscope Teamthe microscope is about as big as an executive desk, with a column about 6 feet high on one end; it cost about $600,000 in 1998, and we can go over 500,000x in mag but get useful information at no higher than about 200,000x
- Bugscope Teamsome flowers produce UV light to attract pollinators
- Studentwhat is the purpose of the hair like stuff and what is it called?
Bugscope Teamhairs on insects are called setae (pronounced see-tee), and they are for the insects to feel the environment around them. They dont have skin like us, but a hard shell so it would be hard for them to get sensory back unless they had that "hair"
- 1:09 pm
- TeacherWhat are we looking at guys...they don't look like antannae
Bugscope Teamthese are longer scales on the head
Bugscope TeamI think we are looking at the labial palps, which are appendages of the mouth.
- Bugscope Teamthe setae allows the insects to feel, taste, smell, etc. Not all setae have the same ability.
- Bugscope TeamCate is right: when we see long hairlike structures they are often sensory setae.
- Bugscope TeamOoh, not looking at insects anymore.
- StudentCan they see in the dark better than we can?Does the glare affect them as it does us?
Bugscope TeamI don't know about the glare. But nocturnal insects are superbly adapted for night vision. They actually diminish the pigments in their eyes so they have a better chance of catching stray photons.
- Bugscope TeamI believe we're looking at the business end of spider fangs.
- 1:14 pm
- Bugscope Teamyes you can see the spider's fangs, folded inward, there
- Studentwhat % of the insects are carnivors and what % of the
- Studentdo they have taste buds
Bugscope TeamThey can taste, but they use hairs - no taste buds like us.
- Studentbye! thanks! that was really cool!!! :)..
- Bugscope Teamfortunately the glare does not affect you as bad as it does moths
- Bugscope Teamthank you for using bugscope
- Studentthat was awesome have to go now
- StudentGOOD BEY THAOUNK Y
- StudentThank you so much! what we saw was really cool. =]
- Bugscope TeamThanks for the questions!
- Studentis antomology just the study of insearthropodscts
Bugscope TeamEntomology is strictly the study of insects, yeah - but they lump spiders and mites and things with us all the time.
- Studentthat was sweet but we have to go
- Bugscope Teamremember to check out your member page for all the chat and pics from today's session: http://bugscope.beckman.illinois.edu/members/2009-107
- StudentTHANX SO MUCH
- StudentYou Guys are awsome but we have to go to our next class see ya
- TeacherWow....awesome session, this group is leaving and the next one will be in shortly
- Bugscope Teamok cool
- 1:25 pm
- Bugscope Teamhey everyone! welcome to bugscope.
- TeacherOK...the next group is in guys
- Bugscope TeamWelcome to Bugscope!
- Bugscope Teamwelcome to bugscope!
- Bugscope Teamthese are scales, not commonly found on beetles, on a weevil
- Bugscope Teamscales on weevils sometimes make them look velvety
- Studentwhat order of insect is a weevil?
Bugscope TeamThey're beetles, so the order Coleoptera.
- Studentwhat is a weevil
Bugscope TeamIt's a beetle with a long snout for a mouth.
- Studentwhy do weevils have scales? is there a purpose for them?
Bugscope Teamscales often help insects escape from spider webs. they also help give the insect its color (ones that have scales), and its shimmering quality in the case of some weevils
- 1:30 pm
- Studentwhat is the purpose of there long snout
Bugscope TeamIt helps get their mouth into small, hard-to-reach places. A lot of weevils chew small holes in acorns and seeds and then stick their mouth inside.
- Bugscope TeamOn the beetles I study, the scales are there for color. I would guess it is the same for the weevils.
- Bugscope Teamusually the only insects with scales are silverfish, mosquitos, butterflies, moths, and skippers
- Bugscope Teamby the way it happens that this dude does not have a long snout
- Studentare there different types of electron microscopes?
Bugscope Teamyes basically there are scanning electron microscopes (SEMs) and transmission electron microscopes (TEMs).
- Studentwhen is it too cold for insects?
Bugscope TeamIt depends on the insect. 40 degrees is too cold for some insects. Other ones can freeze solid and be just fine.
- Bugscope Teamthis is an SEM.
- Bugscope TeamAh, yes - like Scott says, not all weevils have the long snout.
- Bugscope Teamthis is them head of one of those walking sticks
- Bugscope Teamthis is *the* head...
- 1:36 pm
- Studenthow are they able to freeze solid and still be alive
Bugscope TeamIt's tricky. It involves the use of chemicals that cause ice crystals to form outside, rather than inside, the cells.
- Studenthow many species of weevils are there
Bugscope Teamthere are said to be (Wikipedia) over 60,000 species of weevils
Bugscope TeamThere are actually more species of weevil than any other beetle.
- Studentdo all insects have the same compound eye
Bugscope Teamno -- once you start looking you that they are sometimes quite different
- Bugscope TeamExcuse me, any other group of beetles.
- Studentwhat are the little hexagons called and how many are on a normal compound eye?
Bugscope Teamthe hexagons are individual facets of the eye, called ommatidia, and there can be several thousand on a wasp eye, for example, and as few as 10 or 12 on an ant eye. ants sometimes have no eyes
- StudentWhat colors can insects see?
Bugscope TeamGreat question, and I have give you a disappointing answer: "it depends on the insect." Some insects can see everything you can. Others can see ultraviolet light, but not low frequences of visible light (like red or orange).
- 1:41 pm
- Bugscope TeamYou can actually tell what insect pollinates a flower by what color it is. Bees see ultraviolet but not low frequency (red) colors. So flowers that are attracting bees are usually blue or violet, rather than red or orange.
- Studentcan the lense on each little hexagon focus on different points?
Bugscope TeamThey can't move, so they are stuck seeing whatever photo comes their way. However, lenses on different parts of the compound eye will see different things. Insects have a huge field of view, can many can see almost entirely around their bodies.
- Bugscope Teamthose soybean aphids must really go for yellow flowers
- Bugscope TeamExcuse me - they can see what ever photon comes their way. Not photo.
- Studentwhat kind of insects or birds are attracted to yellow flowers
Bugscope TeamNot sure about birds. But oddly, most insects are attracted to yellow. I am not sure why. Perhaps because it is a common flower color?
- Studenthow many years do bees live
Bugscope TeamThe queen bee in a honey bee hive can live for many years - the workers usually live on the order of several weeks.
- Studentwhat is coating the insects eyes?
Bugscope Teamsometimes after they die, they get dust on them, or fluids, or mold, and even bacteria
- Bugscope TeamI found a reference that says that bird pollinated flowers are usually red or yellow
- Bugscope TeamAdding on to what Rob said, worker honey bees are said to live 28 to 35 days. The queens can live up to 2 years.
- 1:47 pm
- Studenthow long does the stickck bug live?
Bugscope TeamThe stick insects in Illinois, where I am, only live for a year.
- Studentwhat insect has the shortest life span
Bugscope Teamit is said that the lifespan of an adult mayfly may be as short as 30 minutes
Bugscope TeamThe shortest I can think of is called a Strepsipteran, which is a weird little order of insects called the twisted-wing flies. The male strepsipterans, if I remember correctly, will live as little as a few hours after emerging as adults.
- Bugscope Teamone of the bugs in the 'scope today has lots of brochosomes, from a leafhopper, on its compound eyes
- Studentwhat do they use the claws for mainly
Bugscope Teamclaws help insects grasp things, like you do using your hands; they can help them climb rough surfaces, for examples
- Studentwhat insect has the longest life span
- TeacherMatt wants to know what the hairs are called and what are they for
Bugscope Teamthe hairs are called setae, or microsetae, or trichae, or microtrichae, or spines or bristles...
- Bugscope TeamOk, Scott's insect wins.
- Bugscope TeamThe catch with insect life spans is that when the adults live for very short periods of time, the young insects can live for years. For instance, cicadas live for only a few months, but underground as nymphs they can live for over a decade!
- StudentWhy does a cricket need claws? What does it use them for?
Bugscope Teama lot of insects have claws. They use them to grip onto things they are climbing on, or to hold onto their food
- Bugscope Teamit is also said that some queen termites may live for 50 years
- TeacherRob...I'm a fly fishing outfitter ...aren't tricorythode mayflies adults for just a few hours
Bugscope TeamYeah, like Scott said - the lifespan of mayfly adults can be very, very brief. Can't believe I forgot about them. The nymphs, on the other hand, spend a long time developing underwater.
- Studenthow fast can a termite travel
Bugscope TeamI can't find a hard number for you. But from my own observations, they can travel about as fast as an average ant - pretty quick considering the size.
- Studenthow long can ant queens live
Bugscope TeamSome ant colonies are annual - the queens live only a year. Others can last for many years. And some colonies replace their queens, so they can live, well, indefinitely!
- 1:53 pm
- Bugscope Teamsetae can be mechano(touch)sensory, chemo(smell)sensory, or thermosensory (registering hot or cold)
- Studenthow long are termite queens?
Bugscope TeamThey can also live for many years.
- StudentWhy do the queens of hymenoptera colonies live so much longer than other insects?
Bugscope TeamThat is a great question. I'm discussing it wth a few other entomologists right now and we don't have a good answer for you. Queen insects are expressing a different set of genes than the workers, and whatever is activated must extend their life spans.
- Studentwhat is the largest insect in the world
Bugscope Teama Lobster
Bugscope TeamDepends on your measure of size. :) Heaviest, the goliath beetle. Largest area, the atlas moth. And longest is a stick insect in polynesia whose name I can't recall.
- 1:59 pm
- Studentyo scott a lobster isnt a insect
- Studenthow big is this microscope, how much does it cost and how hard is it to work
Bugscope Teamthe microscope is about the size of a very large desk, and it has a column about 6 feet tall at one end; it cost about $600,000; it is really pretty easy to operate
- Bugscope Teamreally, the largest insect in the world is sometimes said to be the Goliath beetle, which is about as big as your fist
- Studentwhy cant insect get any body get any bigger like in the horrer movies
Bugscope TeamAh, another great question, and one I can actually answer. The insects are limited by two main things - the exoskeleton can't support a large bug, and the air won't diffuse fast enough into a large insect to keep it alive.
- Bugscope Teamlobsters have two sets of antennae, unlike insects, and they are segmented differently as well
- Bugscope Teamoh yeah some of those stick insects can be like 15 inches long!
- Studentthanks i know it took ur time it was awsome
- Bugscope TeamThank You!
- Studenthow much is the microscope worth now
Bugscope Teamthat is hard to say -- it is still just as good as it was when we bought it
- Bugscope TeamThanks for the questions!
- Studentthank you scot and others it was really nice
- 2:04 pm
- Studentthat was wicked thank you gtg bye
- Studentyou guys were great and very helpful
- Studentthat was super awesome, and we hope that we can do it again some time
- Studentthank you so much!
- Bugscope Teamall the chat and images from today's session are saved to your member page: http://bugscope.beckman.illinois.edu/members/2009-107
- Bugscope TeamThank You! You were great participants today!
- Bugscope Teamthank you for all your great questions. it's always fun trying to stump the entymologist
- TeacherYou guys rock! Great sessions, the kids are already raving about how cool this was. Thanks a bunch for providing such an amazing experience to our students!!! We are done for the day.
- Bugscope TeamAnd stumped I was. Excellent questions today.
- Bugscope TeamThank you Mr McG!
- Bugscope Teamyou are totally welcome
- Bugscope Teamremember you member page, you can access it anytime, and review your session with your students: http://bugscope.beckman.illinois.edu/members/2009-107
- Bugscope Teameu, eu
- 2:13 pm
- Bugscope Teamover and out....