Connected on 2011-12-19 14:00:00
from El Paso, Colorado, United States
- 1:14 pm
- Bugscope TeamHi Greg!
- Bugscope Teamwe are getting ready to do the presets
- Bugscope Teamwe're scheduled to work with you from 2 to 3 our time. does that still work for you?
- 1:27 pm
- TeacherHello, I think I'm in.
- Bugscope Teamyes you are!
- TeacherSo we'll start at 1:00?
Bugscope Teamyes 1 your time. is that good for you?
- 1:32 pm
- Bugscope Teamin the meantime you have an opportunity to preview the setup
- TeacherOkay, what do I do?
- Bugscope Teamright now you don't need to do anything
- Bugscope Teamonce we hand control over to you you'll be able to select from any of the presets and also drive, when you want to
- Bugscope Teamactually you could drive now but it would mess us up
- 1:40 pm
- 1:45 pm
- 1:51 pm
- 1:57 pm
- Bugscope TeamMr D you are now the Supreme Ruler
- Bugscope Teamthis is one of the housefly's spiracles
- Bugscope Teamso you may drive whenever you'd like, and feel free to ask us questions
- Bugscope Teamyou may select from any of the presets on the lefthand screen, and you may also change the mag, etc., on the central screen
- Bugscope Teamspiracles are what insects use to breathe
- Bugscope Teamthey are connected, on the inside, to tracheae that bring air to the internal organs
- Bugscope Teaminsects can open and close their spiracles
- Bugscope Teaminsects don't have nostrils or use their mouths to breath. They have these 'portholes' along their body to supply oxygen
- Bugscope Teamthe little hairs in the spiracle, which are setae (pronounced see-tee) help keep particles out. Like nose hairs
- Bugscope Teamthere are usually two spiracles per body segment, and they are usually to the sides
- 2:03 pm
- TeacherHow larege are they?
Bugscope Teamif you look at the scalebar, to the lower left of the screen, you can see that this one has an opening about 20 micrometers (20 microns) in diameter
- Bugscope Teamthat is about 10 bacilli long. there are 1000 micrometers in a millimeter; a micrometer is one millionth of a meter
- TeacherWhat kind of diseases can flies carry?
- TeacherI have student questions: Can the EM catch bugs on fire?
Bugscope Teamnone yet. The samples are kept in a vacuum so there isn't enough oxygen to get any flames. Sometimes the beam will cause the surface of a material to bubble though
- Bugscope Teambe sure to try other presets. and let us know if you have any trouble
- 2:09 pm
- Bugscope Teamas you can see wasps have large eyes as well that actually curve around their heads
- Bugscope Teamflying insects in general have bigger eyes
- TeacherWhy do flies have such large beady eyes?
Bugscope Teamhaving large round eyes means that flies have very good peripheral vision; they don't have to turn their heads far to see all around them. also, those are compound eyes, made of hundreds to thousands of individual lenses, called ommatidia. with that many facets, the fly gets immediate updates on how its visual field is changing. so it is hard to catch them.
- Bugscope Teamground dwellers like this rolypoly will either have small eyes or no eyes at all because they just dont have a need for them underground
- Bugscope Teamsome insects see wavelengths of light we do not see. for example, moths, which can see in the ultraviolet.
- TeacherWhy and how do they roll up/
Bugscope Teamthey are like armadillos. they curl up in defense. Their backs have plates on them like a suit of armor that allow them to roll up
- TeacherHow long does it take to set up the EM?
Bugscope Teamit takes us 45 minutes to take the sample we have already prepared for you and collect the presets you are seeing now. it takes maybe 20 minutes to prepare the sample in the first place, from mounting the insects on a stub to coating that stub with gold-palladium.
- TeacherDo they see in color?
Bugscope Teaminsects can see in color. some better than others, and some see specific colors better than others.
- Bugscope Teamit is possible and even likely that a crustacean like the rolypoly does not see very well.
- 2:15 pm
- TeacherHow do moths eat?
Bugscope Teamthey eat with their proboscis, which is curled up right now. They drink liquids like nectar
- TeacherHow long do moths live?
Bugscope Teamaround a month
- TeacherWhy are moths attracted to light?
Bugscope Teamthey confuse strong lights with the sun, and it overwhelms them
- Bugscope Teamactually, regarding moths being attracted to light, they are said to be confusing it with the moon; there are a variety of different theories about this
- TeacherDo they have blood vessels in their wings?
Bugscope Teamthey have channels like blood vessels that carry hemolymph into the wings
- 2:20 pm
- TeacherWill they die if you touch their wings?
Bugscope Teamtheir wings are pretty delicate. I think they will only die if you rip them. If you take some of the scales off I believe they will be fine still. The wings don't help them fly, but they can actually shed some to get out of a spider's web
- TeacherHow many volts does an EM take to work?
Bugscope Teamours can run with as low as 500 volts, but usually we operate at 5000 volts, and when we are doing elemental analysis we may work at 20,000 volts
- Bugscope Teamthe insect version of blood is hemolymph, and there is not a circulatory system in the body like we have, but they do have the ability to pressurize the hemolymph and force it into the wings, and also into the proboscis when they want it to extend to drink nectar from a flower
- TeacherHow many species of millepedes are there?
Bugscope Teamthere are around 10,000 known species
- TeacherWhat do they eat?
Bugscope Teamthey eat decaying plant material, called detritus, so they are sometimes called detritivores
- TeacherHow can they walk with all those legs?
Bugscope TeamMillipedes do not move one foot forward at a time – they move five or six in unison.
- TeacherIs that an eye?
Bugscope Teamyou can see the compound eye in the upper middle of where we are looking now
- 2:26 pm
- Bugscope Teamthe millipede's compound eye has only 12 or 15 facets
- TeacherWhat is that hole?
Bugscope Teamthat is where an antenna is broken off
- TeacherWhat are those rocky things?
Bugscope Teamthose are little bits of rock and dirt
Bugscope Teamthose are indeed rocks, or dirt. ha Cate beat me to it
- TeacherAre they poisonous?
Bugscope Teamthey cannot bite or sting, but some of them can produce toxins that are most useful in deterring ants and other potential predators
- TeacherWhy do they have so many legs?
Bugscope Teammaybe it is helpful to have many short legs in the environment in which they live
Bugscope Teamtheir short legs help with burrowing in the dirt
- TeacherIs that a hair?
Bugscope Teamit is a hair, which in insects we call a seta; the plural is 'setae.'
- 2:31 pm
- TeacherDo they shed?
Bugscope Teamno, but some insects, as adults, can molt.
- Bugscope Teaminsects and other similar arthropods use setae to help sense their environment
- Bugscope Teamsome of the setae are chemosensory, meaning that they can collect scents from the air or from touching; some are mechanosensory, meaning that they are touch sensitive; and some setae are thermosensory, meaning they can sense hot/cold
- TeacherDo they suck blood? vampires?
Bugscope Teamsome insects, like mosquitoes and bedbugs, suck blood; also horseflies, which have slashing mouthparts
- Bugscope Teamalso fleas suck blood, as do lice
- TeacherThey are made of cells. Are there cells inside of cells?
Bugscope Teamsome people would argue that mitochondria might once have been independent cells, but generally there are not cells inside of cells
- 2:37 pm
- TeacherDo they lay eggs on the earwigs body?
Bugscope Teamthat is a good question, and we do not know -- we don't know much about mites. I want to buy a book about them but it is $143.
- TeacherIS this from the reticulated net winged beetle?
Bugscope Teamif that is the type of beetle you sent us, then yes
- TeacherWhat is a palp?
Bugscope Teama palp is an accessory mouthpart that may resemble a tiny leg. it is used to manipulate and also taste prospective food
- TeacherDo you know how large these get?
Bugscope Teamwe don't. they are nectar feeding and don't live long. they are also poisonous, which accounts for their bright colors
- TeacherWhy are they red?
Bugscope Teamthe red is usually an indicator that they should be left alone. Either they taste bad, or it is just to scare off predators
- 2:42 pm
- TeacherWhy do there wings look like nets?
Bugscope Teamit's because the veins in the wings show up well; many insect wings are similar, but in the case of these beetles the veins are more obvious
- TeacherAre these used for preying?
Bugscope Teamthey seem to be used more for protection from predators; earwigs are plant pests, generally
- Bugscope Teamthe males have 'bowlegged' cercopods like these; those of the females are more straight
- TeacherIs that a proboscis?
Bugscope Teamyes the thing sticking out towards us is a proboscis
- Bugscope Teamyou can see two palps standing up straight like rabbit ears
- TeacherHow do they eat if they can' chew?
Bugscope Teamthey spit saliva onto their food, and they sponge up what the saliva dissolves
- Bugscope Teamat the top of the head, from this view, you can see the antennae
- TeacherHow many sets of wings do they have?
Bugscope Teamflies just have 1 set of wings. They also have a set of halteres that beat opposite their wings to help give a gyroscopic effect
- TeacherDoes it also dissolve eggshells?
Bugscope Teamnot that I know of...
- 2:48 pm
- TeacherIs this a male or female?
Bugscope Teamthis is supposedly a female because of how far apart the eyes are
- Bugscope Teamwe had an entomologist tell us that in most flies, the male eyes are close together and those of the female are far apart
- TeacherDo all bugs have parasites?
Bugscope Teamnot only all bugs but all lifestages of bugs have parasites, or at least parasitoid wasps that want to lay their eggs in them
- Bugscope Teamthis is cool -- this is one of the mouthparts of a scorpion, which is an arachnid
- TeacherIS the EM process hard to do?
Bugscope Teamit is really pretty straightforward, but sometimes we have to critical point dry samples, which can take some time
- 2:54 pm
- TeacherHow do scorpions eat?
Bugscope Teamthis is copied directly from Wikipedia: Scorpions have a relatively unique style of eating using chelicerae, small claw-like structures that protrude from the mouth that are unique to the Chelicerata among arthropods. The chelicerae, which are very sharp, are used to pull small amounts of food off the prey item for digestion into a pre-oral cavity below the chelicerae and carapace. Scorpions can only ingest food in a liquid form; they have external digestion. The digestive juices from the gut are egested onto the food and the digested food sucked in liquid form. Any solid indigestible matter (fur, exoskeleton, etc.) is trapped by setae in the pre-oral cavity, which is ejected by the scorpion.[
- TeacherHow did you think of doing this with kids?
Bugscope Teamwe wanted a way to get kids interested in science. We know most schools wouldn't have access to electron microscopes so we made it possible. We hope that using bugscope, it gets kids thinking that maybe they want to do something science related. Like an entymologist
- TeacherHow long have you been doing this?
Bugscope TeamBugscope has been running for almost 13 years. Some of us were here to help start it.
- TeacherHow many years of training do you have to have?
Bugscope Teamit is very helpful to have a college degree; it is easy to operate the instruments but takes a little more effort to learn the theory of operation so that you are good at working with a variety of samples
- TeacherWell, we have to go, thank you very much!
Bugscope TeamThank You! This is fun for us, and we learn as well.
- 3:01 pm
- Bugscope Teamyou can access your images and chat from today by visiting your member page at http://bugscope.beckman.uiuc.edu/members/2011-109