Connected on 2010-11-03 12:30:00
from Yarmouth, ME, US
- 12:17 pm
- Bugscope Teamwelcome to Bugscope!
- Bugscope TeamCathy you should now be able to drive the microscope. I just finished the presets
- Bugscope Teamif you put your cursor on something within the image and click, the 'scope will center on that area
- TeacherI'm not seeing the controls I'm used to. OK, that worked. Will you be switching images?
- Bugscope Teamyou can also change the mag, focus, fix the contrast and brightness, and --- you can choose another place from among the presets and the 'scope will drive to that place
- Bugscope Teamif you click on the arrow to the left you can see your choice of presets
- Bugscope Teamso you can drive -- it's just different from how it used to be
- TeacherI see, that worked.
- Bugscope Teamyou're doing a good job already
- Bugscope Teamyou'll see that sometimes the presets have shifted a bit from how they were when we set them up
- Bugscope Teamthat lets you know that this is live imaging of a real sample
- TeacherOK, thanks, the students are coming in now. I think our Superintendent (former Chemistry teacher) may stop by
- Bugscope Teamwe still have some work to do with the interface, but the core is completed
- Bugscope TeamCool!
- 12:23 pm
- Bugscope TeamCate made the sample today, and she put everything she could on the stub. Supplemented with a few things from our stock.
- TeacherIt will be a few minutes while we get the kids settled - two classes so about 45 students.
- Bugscope TeamYay! Sounds good!
- TeacherWhat is on the screen right now?
- Bugscope Teamthis is near where we were, and I am not sure what it is, it is so round
- Bugscope Teamsometimes we see tiny latex spheres, like from car tires, that land on insects
- 12:28 pm
- Bugscope Teamthese are also on the beetle, but they don't belong to it
- Bugscope Teamthey are wing scales, likely from the monarch butterfly
- Bugscope Teamyou can also see microsetae -- tiny 'hairs' -- in the background
- Bugscope Teamthat is the ladybug's elytra -- the hard shell that protects the wings
- Bugscope Teamladybugs eat other insects, but generally small ones. they like aphids
- Bugscope Teamthis is one of the six claws at the ends of the legs
- TeacherWill - do they eat ants?
- Bugscope TeamI am not sure. Some ants will spray predators with formic acid to avoid being bothered.
- TeacherSam - how sharp are the ladybug''s claws?
Bugscope Teamwe can see that they are pretty sharp, but they are so tiny it would just tickle you - they could not pierce your skin.
- 12:33 pm
- TeacherSam - how many setae does a ladybug have?
Bugscope Teamthe setae are tiny hairs, some of which are sensory; and there are thousands
- Bugscope Teamsetae can be touch sensory, hot/cold sensory, or smell sensory
- TeacherTom - Do praying mantis eat ladybugs?
Bugscope Teamladybugs actually taste bad to many insects. their color is a warning to birds and insects that they taste bad. so I am not sure if praying mantises like them, as food.
- TeacherWill ladybugs attack their predators in any way?
Bugscope Teamif they can they will bite
- TeacherWe're wondering what magnification we are on now?
- Bugscope Teamwe are looking at the ladybug from underneath; this is only 41x.
- TeacherLily - How many colors of ladybugs are there?
Bugscope Teamusually they are red with black dots, but sometimes you see yellowy ones
- TeacherTierra - How many spots can ladybugs have?
Bugscope TeamI am not sure -- I think from none to about 12.
- TeacherWhat is on the screen now, we think it is a mouth?
- Bugscope Teamthese are the mouthparts, yes!
- 12:39 pm
- Bugscope Teamthere are mandibular and maxillary palps, and there are the mandibles themselves, which open from side to side
- TeacherMouthparts ow what?
- Teacheroops, of what?
- Bugscope Teamthe big things that look like vacuum cleaner nozzles are palps
- Bugscope Teamoh yeah -- this is the ladybug
- Bugscope Teamits mouth is so small for a predator, but it does really like aphids, which are small and soft
- TeacherThe mouth of the ladybug?
- TeacherJustin - How many kinds of ladybugs are there in the world?
Bugscope Teamthere are said to be more than 5000 species of ladybugs in the world
- Bugscope Teampalps are like little accessory mouthparts that help the ladybug feed by manipulating and tasting its food
- TeacherQuincy - How high can a ladybug fly?
Bugscope Teamthey are said to prefer high elevations, but they also do not like it when it is colder than about 55 degrees out, so they must not fly too high or they will get cold
- TeacherLuca - Can other insects get lice?
Bugscope Teamthey get mites and diseases; mites are kind of like lice to insects
- Bugscope Teamthis is a cute little fruit fly
- 12:44 pm
- TeacherNoah - What are the hair-like spike things all over its body?
- Bugscope Teamthey are spines, or spikes, or setae that help it sense its surroundings, mostly
- Bugscope Teamyou could think of many of the spines as functioning like cat or rat whiskers in the dark
- Bugscope Teaminsects and similar arthropods do not have skin; instead they have a kind of shell
- TeacherCaroline - What it the thing that sticks out on the right? Is it the mouth?
Bugscope Teamthat is the mouth, but it is a little dry, not like it would be if the fruit fly was alive. it is a sponging mouthpart
- TeacherKevin - How big can a ladybug get?
Bugscope TeamI am not sure. I think they can get thumb-sized in the Tropics.
- TeacherOwen - how many species of beetles are there.
Bugscope Teamthere are several hundred thousand beetle species -- a huge number
- Bugscope Teamladybugs, from what I just read, can get no more than a centimeter long, but I am not sure about that.
- 12:49 pm
- TeacherCatherine - isn't it hard for them to see out of all those eyes?
Bugscope Teamtheir brains are well-suited to arrange all of the tiny images they see into a coherent whole
- Bugscope Teamif you had compound eyes you would have better peripheral vision
- TeacherNick - Can a praying mantis pierce our skin?
- TeacherEmily - Are there tiny hairs in its eye?
Bugscope Teamyes there are! they are tiny sensory setae that help the fruit fly judge wind speed and direction
- Bugscope Teamthis is a portion of the wing of the dragonfly
- TeacherJane - How do you as scientists catch insects that you can't actually see?
Bugscope Teamentomologists, who study insects, use very fine nets, for one, to catch insects; they can also breed them in some cases, so they are around when the eggs hatch
- Bugscope Teamsometimes insects are caught in liquid as well, in the bottom of a trap
- 12:54 pm
- TeacherJacob - How big can dragonfly wings get? The wing span?
- TeacherMichael - this looks more like a chain saw than a wing.
Bugscope Teamyeah it is amazing -- the edge of the wing of the dragonfly; I wonder if it is protection against birds
- Bugscope Teamdragonflies are one of the very fastest fliers, and they are also predators
- Bugscope Teamdragonflies have four wings, as do bees and wasps; but bees and wasps hook the fore- and hindwings together when they fly, so it is more like having only two wings
- TeacherNick - Praying Manis question - can they pierce human skin?
Bugscope TeamI am sorry I missed that earlier. Big ones can.
- TeacherBrie - How many different kinds of moths are there?
- TeacherHank - Why dragonfly nymphs live under water for 2 years?
Bugscope Teamthat is part of their lifecycle, and it is a very good way to get food, as a nymph. they are predators in the water as well
- Bugscope Teamdragonfly nymphs are fierce and will even eat other dragonfly nymphs
- Bugscope Teamit is said that larvae can live in the water for 5 years; I think it depends on where they live.
- 12:59 pm
- TeacherEllie - Is that really the cricket head, it looks like a rock? Is it missing some parts?
Bugscope Teamcertainly it is missing one of its antennae, isn't it?
- Bugscope Teamand you can see that some of its palps are broken. I think it had a hard life.
- Bugscope Teamyou can see its compound eyes, and the front of its head, of course, and its tiny mandibles
- TeacherCaroline-Why is the head so bumpy?
Bugscope Teamyou know I think it is because there are so many moving parts, and also, if you think about it, it is slow -- it does not need to be streamlined so that it can fly swiftly, for example.
- TeacherJohn - How slow can the slowest insect go?
Bugscope Teamthey can really take their time -- think about a walking stick, or a leaf mimic
- TeacherBrie - How many kinds of moths are there?
Bugscope Teamthere are perhaps 150,000 to 250,000 species, from what I read
- Bugscope Teamthis is how insects breathe -- through these kind of ducts called spiracles
- TeacherElla - What is the biggest insect in the world?
Bugscope Teamwalking sticks can get to be 14 or 15 inches long, and stretched out they can be maybe 22 inches; some beetles, like the Goliath Beetle, are as big as your fist
- 1:06 pm
- TeacherAdrianna - Why doesn't the cricket have a nose or lungs?
Bugscope Teamthey have a different way of distributing oxygen to their organs, and we are lucky in a way that they are not as efficient as we are. Because I believe the way they breathe keeps them from getting super large.
- TeacherLauren - Is there only one type of firefly?
Bugscope Teamthere are said to be 2000 species of firefly
- TeacherClass - what is the importance of lice, ticks, and cockroaches since we think they are a nuisance.
Bugscope Teamthey help recycle things, for one, and they may serve as food for species we would like to have around, like frogs and lizards; sometimes it is surprising how they fit into the web of life, and if they are missing, something we might have taken for granted would not be able to survive. an obvious example is bees, but many other insects may also serve as pollinators, or as essential part of a diet of something we like
- TeacherJane - This spiracle looks like a spring bent out of shape, what is that for?
Bugscope Teamthe spiracle has to have filter-like qualities, and it can also be closed, if the insect wants to 'hold its breath'
- Bugscope TeamI am sorry this is so bright -- it is charging up with electrons
- Bugscope Teamthis is the proboscis -- the 'tongue' of the monarch
- 1:11 pm
- Bugscope Teamthe proboscis is coiled for flying but can then extend like a straw for feeding
- Bugscope TeamMonarchs like to eat milkweed, which is toxic to many other species
- TeacherHow long can a proboscis get? Quincy
Bugscope Teamdepending on the species, they can get a few centimeters long -- they might have to reach deep into a flower to extract the nectar
- Bugscope Teamthese are simple eyes on the head of the caterpillar
- Bugscope Teamsome simple eyes register light and that's it -- some of them do not focus light, for example
- Bugscope Teamwasps and bees and flies have extra eyes on top of their heads called 'ocelli.' There are usually three of them, fairly close together and in a triangle pattern. They help flying insects keep their orientation, using the sun.
- 1:16 pm
- TeacherDo you have any cockroach samples? Michael
- TeacherWe read about a heat swarm of bees, how hot can a heat swarm get? Will
Bugscope TeamI am not sure -- I read that they can keep a temperature of 34 C, which is not as warm as our body temperature.
- Bugscope Teambees have to be able to stay warm but also not get too hot
- TeacherClass - We bought a book at our school book fair called "Micro Monsters" . We thought it must have been written by the Bugscope team.
- TeacherKendrick - Do all insects have compound eyes?
Bugscope Teamnot all insects have compound eyes, and even the quality of compound eyes is not the same; some can see UV light. some insects do not have eyes -- for example some species of ants do not need eyes but get the information they need using their antennae
- TeacherDo you know how many stripes there are on a yellow jacket? Sofia
Bugscope TeamI think it varies; some have two large yellow stripes, which kind of surprises me
- 1:21 pm
- TeacherHow do fireflies make their light? Nick
Bugscope Teamthey have a chemical called luciferase that makes light when it is combined with oxygen; they can control that and it is helpful when they are advertising for mates, or when they are using the light to let other things know that they taste bad
- TeacherWhy Scot?
Bugscope TeamI just thought there were more until I checked
- TeacherWe were wondering why an electron microscope picture isn't in color.
Bugscope Teamthe image comes to us as signal rather than light; the electrons are much smaller than the wavelengths of light. when we use the electron microscope we are beaming electrons at the samples, and what comes back are secondary electrons from the surface of the sample; if a lot of secondary electrons come back the image is brighter.
- TeacherCan a dragonfly claw take off your fingernail? Sam
Bugscope Teamno they are so tiny; I don't think they can hurt you
- TeacherWe learned a lot today: one thing is that there are many species of fireflies & moths & beetles.
Bugscope Teamthere are a huge number of species of beetles in particular
- 1:27 pm
- TeacherKendrick - Do compound eyes have different shapes or all they all six sides?
Bugscope Teamthey are generally but not always six-sided. sometimes four or five
- TeacherA big thank you from all of us for all your research and quick responses!!
Bugscope TeamThank You!
- TeacherGood bye, we will look at the specimens more on our laptops.
- Bugscope TeamThat was fun! Thank You! And see you next year!
- Bugscope Teamhttps://bugscope.beckman.illinois.edu/members/2010-085