Connected on 2010-04-21 14:15:00
from Pewaukee, WI, US
- 1:47 pm
- Bugscope TeamHi Mr Fixl!
- Bugscope TeamWe're setting up for today's session
- 1:54 pm
- 1:59 pm
- Bugscope TeamHi Mr Finn!
- Bugscope TeamWelcome to Bugscope!
- 2:04 pm
- TeacherThanks - good to be back :) How is everyone over there?
- Bugscope TeamWe are doing well. Cate is making the presets and I am pressing the buttons to set them.
- Bugscope TeamThis is Scott, logged into Chaos.
- TeacherSounds good - we'll have all of the student's here in about 10 minutes. Just wanted to make sure we could get on.
- Bugscope TeamLooks like you're in great shape.
- Teachercool - the students are filing in now
- 2:12 pm
- Teacherwe're ready to go when you guys are
Bugscope Teamthe session is unlocked and you have control
- Bugscope TeamAlright! You are the supreme ruler.
- TeacherThat's awesome
- Bugscope Teamthis is near the mouth of the earthrworm -- a slightly shrunken pollen grain and the folds of the 'skin.'
- Bugscope Teamlot of debris from crawling through the dirt
- TeacherThe kids are amazed right now
- Bugscope TeamFeel free to drive around, ask questions; let us know if you have any trouble.
- Bugscope Teamyou are controlling a $600,000 electron microscope from your classroom
- TeacherWhy is the mouth all scrunched/crinkled? --Elias
Bugscope Teamworms shrink and shrivel when they air dry. They don't have a hard exoskeleton like insects, which allow them to keep their shape
- Bugscope Teamthe samples in the microscope -- in the vacuum chamber -- are coated with gold-palladium to make them conductive.
- 2:17 pm
- TeacherWhat is the thing in the center of the screen? -- Brett
Bugscope Teamwe think it is a pollen grain. sometimes mold spores look very similar to pollen, however
- Bugscope Teamonce we got fresh worms in ethanol, and we were able to critical point dry them, keeping them in essentially their normal 3D form. When they air-dry the surface of the worm shrinks as the water leaves the tissue.
- Bugscope Teamthere are other examples of pollen grains on the samples you sent
- Bugscope Teamdo you recognize this?
- TeacherThey knew based on the title ... but they are surprised it does look like this up close
- Bugscope Teamyou can see compound eyes on either side of the head, and you can see large palps that look like vacuum cleaner nozzles, and you can see small palps, now
- Bugscope Teamladybugs eat other insects like aphids, which are pests. So lots of people hate ladybugs, but they help with the aphid population
- Bugscope Teamplus you can see the jaws, which open from side to side and are almost delicate looking.
- 2:23 pm
- TeacherIs this the mouth of the ladybug? What do they eat to survive?
- Bugscope TeamWe were talking about the tiny jaws earlier, and Cate pointed out that smaller jaws like that would be helpful in grabbing and piercing aphids, for a little snack
- Bugscope Teami think the forked jaws help with tearing into the aphids
- TeacherWhy is it all hairy? -- Ross
Bugscope Teaminsects are a lot hairier than they seem, they aren't at all smooth. Insects are wearing that hard armor, called an exoskeleton, that they can't feel through like we can our skin, so they have those hairs poking through that are attached to nerves underneath- allowing them to feel around their environment
- Bugscope TeamLadybugs eat other insects, but they have to choose rather small ones.
- Bugscope TeamIt's like Cate said, ladybugs are beneficial. Without them your plants might be taken over by aphids.
- TeacherProductive members of the animal kingdom
- Bugscope Teamto me ladybugs are a bit of a pest since I had to vacuum them all winter, but to many agriculturists they are beneficial
- Bugscope Teamthe hairs, which we call 'setae,' are mechanosensory (touch receptors), or thermoreceptors (hot/cold), or chemoreceptors (smell).
- Bugscope Teamthe smaller pointy palps have chemoreceptors built into their tips so the ladybug can taste its prospective food
- Bugscope Teamand here we see the edge of a housefly's tongue
- TeacherWhat are the stringy things? --Jackson
Bugscope Teamthose are bigger setae, or hairs
- 2:28 pm
- TeacherDo animals have taste buds like we do?
Bugscope Teamyeah, they can be a little different looking, but they are essentially like tastebuds.
- Bugscope Teamsome of the *small* stringy things are microsetae, and they likely do not have a sensory function. they do help the saliva stick to the surface of the tongue
- Bugscope Teaminsects detect and respond to lots of chemical signals, certainly more than we do
- TeacherIs it possible to see germs through a microscope? --Brett
Bugscope Teamwe see bacteria in the microscope a lot. The rod-shaped bacteria, like e. coli, are about 2 microns bigs.
- Bugscope Teamsome insects produce pheromones to attract mates, and sometimes to warn other insects of danger
- Bugscope Teamwe didn't see any bacteria on the insects today, but we see them sometimes
- Bugscope Teamwe often see bacteria on ticks
- TeacherWhat are the circular areas on the tounge? -- Cooper
Bugscope Teamthose are places where bristles that are almost certainly mechaosensory, like cat or rat whiskers, have broken off.
- Bugscope Teamoops Cate beat me to that, about the ticks
- TeacherWhat is the stick looking thing coming out of the circle in the upper left? --A.C.
Bugscope Teamthat is a broken setae, which are the bug hairs. They kind of look like those cinnamon churros
- 2:35 pm
- TeacherHow is the fly tounge different than a human one?
- Bugscope Teami don't think our tongue is a furry looking
- Bugscope Teamas furry*
- TeacherWhy are there so many spheres on the flies eye? --Brandon
Bugscope Teamthose are the individual components, called ommatidia, of a compound eye. They each are responsible for acquiring an image and sending it back to the brain
- TeacherMrs. Roben says "Sometimes it feels like it Cate"
Bugscope Teamthat is pretty funny
- Bugscope Teamto the right of the image was some spider web
- Bugscope Teamspider silk strands I guess I should say
- TeacherIs that debris on the eye as well, or is that part of it?
Bugscope Teamit is liquid and dust that have settled on the eye. if the fly was alive, she/he would be able to clean much of it off.
- Bugscope Teamthe fly tongue is outside of the head, and it is sort of spongy. it carries saliva that it spits onto things it would like to eat, and the saliva dissolves those things. like if you were to lick icing on a cake. and then it can suck the icing, for example, up as a liquid.
- 2:41 pm
- Bugscope Teamthis is cool!
- TeacherThe kids agree!
- TeacherHow can you determine the gender of a fly?
Bugscope Teamone way to tell that is not always correct is to look at the eyes. those of male flies are often close together, like Mikhail Baryshnikov's eyes. and those of a female fly are often separated -- far apart. like, I dunno, Uma Thurman?
- TeacherIs this the head of a millipede rolled around the body or something else?
Bugscope Teamoops Cate beat me to it again
- Bugscope Teamthe bumpy part towards the middle is the compound eye
- Bugscope Teamnext to the thing that looks like an eye with a stick coming out, which is actually an antenna
- Bugscope Teamthis is a super nice looking millipede you sent
- TeacherThanks :) Go kids!
- Bugscope Teamcentipedes are the more creepy variety of "pedes" that are all leggy and flat looking
- Bugscope Teamsee the ball-and-socket joint at the base of the antenna? that is how your femur fits into your pelvis
- 2:46 pm
- Bugscope Teamthis is cool too!
- Bugscope Teamthis is a claw surrounded by spider hair. It kind of looks like an antler
- Bugscope Teamunder those fine plumose setae -- the hairs that look like long line trees -- you can see the claws
Bugscope Teamthose setae are great for sensing vibrations
- Bugscope Teamoops long *pine* trees
- TeacherHow does a spider eye work? Is it similar the fly?
- Bugscope Teamspiders can make web in different varieties. some of the web is not sticky. but if they get caught in their own web they can eat their way out. and they often do recycle web by eating it.
- Bugscope Teamspiders have simple eyes- which can vary between I think 6-8 eyes
- Bugscope Teamso compared with the fly's compound eyes, they are often poor substitutes
- TeacherWhat is a spider web made out of? What is the silk from? Food or something?
Bugscope Teamthe silk is made of protein, so if the spiders get really hungry they can eat their webs to hold them over.
- TeacherOne of the student's just said that flies see in slow motion. Any truth to that?
Bugscope TeamI've seen studies suggesting that flies have nerves hard-wired for detecting motion, which suggests that some visual processing is a reflex -- something they can react to more quickly because it doesn't need to go through the normal long processing route in the brain
Bugscope Teamyes it is thought that with their compound eyes that encompass almost their entire head, that they see in slow motion and they also have hairs in their eyes that help with sensing air movement, which aids them even more
- Bugscope Teamsome spiders see well, but most see poorly and are more apt to use those plumose setae to sense vibrations that give them information about the outer world
- 2:53 pm
- Bugscope Teamthis is nice
- TeacherWhat is the smalles type of spider? --A.J.
Bugscope Teamif we were to cheat a little, it is clear that some mites are arachnids, and they can be quite tiny. but we will have to look up the smallest spiders.
- Bugscope Teamthe biggest is a bird-eating tarantula, which sounds pretty cool
- Bugscope Teamone of the deals with seeing in slow motion is that if you have many receptors that see variations of the same image field, perhaps you are more able to quickly sense when that field changes, and thus it is like seeing fast motion slowed down
- Bugscope Teamthis is a beetle, but the head reminds me of an ant- it looks muscly
- TeacherAndrea would like to know more about the neck and why it looks like a robot.
- Bugscope Teamhehe i think that's because you can see where the legs and head go into the thorax
- 2:58 pm
- TeacherWhat is the most intelligent insect? --Dani
- Bugscope Teamthis is copied from the internet: The smallest spider known today is the female Anapistula caecula her counterpart the male may really be the smallest but no one has ever seen him yet. She can be found on the Ivory Coast in West Africa. She only measures to be 0.46 mm or 0.018 inches. Since most male spiders are much smaller in comparison to their female counterparts her mate maybe the smallest, however, no one has yet discovered the male of the species. The smallest male spider known to man is the Patu d
- TeacherWhat kind of beetle is this?
Bugscope Teamit kind of looks similar to a firefly, but it's not
Bugscope Teami looked up in a field guide that an insect that most resembles that beetle is the soldier beetle
- Bugscope Teamthe smallest male spider known to 'man' is the Patu digua, which measures 0.37 mm, or 370 microns in diameter. also from the internet
- TeacherWas the mouth of the beetle damaged or is it the way it is supposed to be?
Bugscope TeamIt looks fairly complete. I see a missing right antenna (missing from the left side because it's on its back)
- TeacherWhat is the slowest moving insect?
Bugscope Teamyou could argue that it is a walking stick. but some insects, like scalebugs, attach themselves to surfaces, and thus they are quite slow to move ever.
- 3:03 pm
- Bugscope Teambeetles, depending on how they are caught, as well as other insects, sometimes throw up when they are poisoned and die. and sometimes they throw up anyway, maybe from being squeezed. so sometimes they look great until we see them up close, and then we see that their mouthparts are covered with some kind of juju.
- Teacherjuju being the technical term of course :)
- Bugscope Teamyes very technical
- TeacherHow about the fastest moving insect?
Bugscope Teamsome people say it is the dragonfly, some people say the tiger beetle, and some people say it is a flying roach. I go for the dragonfly.
- Bugscope Teampret-ty!
- Bugscope Teamthis is a scale from a yellow butterfly. there are little pods between the structures that are pigment granules
- TeacherWhat is the purpose of an antenna?
Bugscope Teamantennae are sometimes more important than eyes, to insects. they collect lots of information from the air and from touch, much of it chemical.
- 3:08 pm
- TeacherWhat does it take to be you guys? What type of classes do you take?
Bugscope TeamWe've all gotten here a little differently. I studied physics and computer science, recently getting a masters degree in Bioengineering, none of which are really related directly. But I got a great opportunity to intern in the microscopy suite here when I was in highschool and have been closely associated ever since
- Bugscope Teamwe have entomologists (people that study bugs) that log in every now and then that lend their bug expertise to us
- Bugscope Teamsome ants, for example, do not have eyes. but they always have antennae. almost all of what they do is mediated by chemical signals. if you take the smell of a dead ant and put it on a live ant, the ants that take out the trash, including other dead ants, will carry the live ant away, ignoring that it is live, because of the smell. and the smell is relayed through the antennae.
- TeacherWhat is the most intelligent insect? --Dani
Bugscope Teamsome people say bees because of their complex societies, others say certain spiders (even though they are technically not insects) because of their ability to create different kinds of webs and able to capture prey
- Bugscope Teamand others say fruit flies are the smartest for their size
- Bugscope TeamI have a degree in English and Biology, and I have been doing electron microscopy for many years. But what I think is most important is being interested in how things work, and always learning. the more you know about the more interesting everything is, and the more it all seems to tie together.
- 3:14 pm
- Bugscope Teamthis is salt from a Wendy's restaurant. you can see that it is cubic, like sodium chloride is, but the cubes are duplicated at a smaller scale inside the larger cube. we think that there is a tiny percentage of anticaking agent added to the salt that makes it look so cool.
- Bugscope TeamWorking with microscopes got me interested in all sorts of imaging topics, which is why I chose to study MRI machines (what they use to see inside you at the hospital) in Bioengineering
- TeacherWhy are there holes in salt?
Bugscope TeamThey are not holes so much as they're regions where the salt crystal just didn't grow. New crystals grow from small seed crystals, causing the layering effect, but due to the way they grow some voids are left
- Bugscope Teamthis salt looks like some sort of aztec ruins because of the structure
- Bugscope Teamthis is one of your water striders
- Bugscope TeamCate appeared here in the lab one day, out of the blue, or maybe the elevator. She has a physics degree and just started working here. Now she trains people to run this and other microscopes.
- Bugscope Teamit is a true bug, which means it has a proboscis it uses to stab either plants or other insects to drink from them
- TeacherDoes the structure of a butterfly wing differ according to butterfly?
Bugscope TeamI think the structure is basically the same, but the color pattern varies, of course. the scales often have structural colors as well as colors from the pigments we see in the interstices of the scales.
- TeacherWhat is coming out from between the eyes? Tounge or a stinger of some sort?
Bugscope Teamthat is a proboscis, which is a mouth part, a feeding tube
- 3:19 pm
- Bugscope Teamthis is a hemipteran -- a 'true bug.' one thing that makes them 'true bugs' is their piercing/sucking mouthparts.
- Bugscope Teamthis is the tip of the proboscis we saw a minute ago.
- TeacherAll the kids are saying goodbye and thank you! We have to start ending out day here.
- Bugscope Teamsome of these guys pierce other insects (ambush bugs and assassin bugs, for example), and some of them pierce leaves and fruit.
- Bugscope TeamThank You!
- TeacherMrs. Roben and Mr. Finn both extend our thanks as well! You guys rock!
- Bugscope TeamWe had a good time.
- Bugscope Teamthis is your member page: http://bugscope.beckman.illinois.edu/members/2009-154/
- Bugscope Teamyou can access your member page after the session.
- Bugscope Teamover and out!