Connected on 2013-11-19 10:20:00
from Pottawatomie, Oklahoma, United States
- 9:15 am
- Bugscope Teamsample is in 'scope and pumping down
- Bugscope Teamwaiting for the vacuum to get better
- 9:26 am
- 9:33 am
- 9:38 am
- 9:48 am
- 9:54 am
- 9:59 am
- 10:04 am
- 10:12 am
- TeacherMy class will begin in about 3 minutes.
- Bugscope Teamok sounds good!
- TeacherWe are ready!
- 10:17 am
- Bugscope Teamcool. you guys have control of the microscope.
- Bugscope Teamlet us know when you have quesitons
- Bugscope Teamthese are the spider's fangs
- Bugscope Teamand we can see, below them, one of the ridges that helps secure the prey so the spider can bite it
- Bugscope Teamplease let us know if you have problems controlling the microscope
- Bugscope Teamthere is a set of presets on the lefthand screen
- Bugscope Teameach fang has a pore in it, near the tip, that injects the venom
- TeacherWhat type of spider is this/
Bugscope Teamit is a kind of pseudo black widow, from California
- Bugscope Teamwe can tell it is a female because it has small pedipalps compared to a male
- Bugscope Teamthe fangs are attached to the chelicerae -- you can see them if you take the magnification down
- 10:22 am
- TeacherWhat is the function of the hair?
Bugscope Teamthe hairs help the spider feel what is going on around it. Some spider hairs are also more sensitive to vibrations so it can tell when prey is near
- Bugscope Teamnow we see how they bite -- they spread the chelicers wide enough to get a good grip
- Bugscope Teamspiders and insects have exoskeletons. They can't feel things through their shell like we can our skin
- Bugscope Teampart of the spider's body is soft, and part (the cephalothorax) is hardened
- Bugscope Teamthe abdomen is soft, so if we do not critical point dry a spider, the abdomen will shrivel when it dries
- Bugscope Teamplease be sure to try some of the other presets
- Bugscope Teamspiders inject venom into their prey; the venom dissolves the prey's internal organs
- TeacherHow are the insects dried?
Bugscope Teamoften we just let them air dry, but when we get them in ethanol we can use a critical point dryer to dry them without causing collapse of the soft tissues
- 10:27 am
- Bugscope Teamwe replace the water in the insect with ethanol, and we do to higher and higher grades of ethanol until we are at 100%
- Bugscope Teamin the critical point dryer we can replace the ethanol with liquid CO2
- Bugscope Teamthis fly has 2 big compound eyes and 3 simple eyes in the middle of the top of the head
- TeacherDoes this fly have simple eyes?
- Bugscope Teamand take the CO2 above the critical point, where there is no phase difference betwen liquid and gas
- Bugscope Teamthe ocelli (simple eyes) are on top of the head, in the middle
- Bugscope Teamthere are three ocelli
- 10:34 am
- Bugscope Teaminsects have setae (the hairs, or bristles, or spines) that allow them to sense touch, wind, hot/cold, and smell
- TeacherIs the debris on the compound eyes a result of the drying process or how they are stored?
Bugscope Teamit is how they were collected and also stored
- Bugscope Teamsometimes we clean them by rinsing them with ethanol, but often the debris is interesting
- Bugscope Teamsometimes we find mites, or pollen, or mold spores
- Bugscope Teamcute little ladybug
- Bugscope Teamlarva
- Bugscope Teamto the lower left we see a shriveled-up aphid
- TeacherMy students don't think it is so cute.
Bugscope Teamhaha We don't either, really
- Bugscope Teamthey are predators, both as larvae and as adults
- Bugscope Teamit sure is creepy
- Bugscope Teamaphids are softbodied, so when they dry they look like an assemblage of limbs, like someone threw a bagpipe on a bed
- Bugscope Teamadult ladybugs like to eat aphids, in particular, so they are protecting your garden
- 10:39 am
- TeacherWhat is the function of the spikes on the sides?
Bugscope TeamI think they discourage other insects from eating them
Bugscope Teamonce they become adult, they have coloration (the red elytra, with the black spots) that lets other insects and birds, for example, know that they do not taste good
- Bugscope Teamwe see stubby little antennae, and they usually have five or so stemmata (eyes) on each side
- TeacherDo they see well as larvae?
Bugscope TeamI don't think so, not at all
- Bugscope Teamwhen they become adults, they can fly, of course, and they have compound eyes
- Bugscope Teamthe two deflated-looking domes are stemmata, and the thing to the right is the antenna
- Bugscope Teamthis is cool
- Bugscope Teamleafhoppers have piercing/sucking mouthparts
- TeacherSo strange though
- Bugscope Teamthe curved thing we see is the actual stylet, which pierces the leaf
- 10:44 am
- Bugscope Teama blunt proboscis
- Bugscope Teambed bugs have similar mouthparts, but they like blood
- Bugscope Teamthey drink plant juice.
Bugscope Teamhealth conscious insects
- Bugscope Teambedbugs can point their mouthparts out in front the head, like a unicorn, kind of
- Bugscope Teamin front of their head...
- TeacherDoesn't really lengthen their lives though does it?
Bugscope Teamthe plant juices? haha
- Bugscope Teamsome true bugs, which the bed bugs and leafhoppers are a part of, feed on other insects, piercing through the cuticle and sucking the guts and other juices out with their mouthparts
- Bugscope Teamthis is a 75-year-old leafhopper
- TeacherWas it that old or have you had it that long?
Bugscope TeamI think it is just a few months old, really. It's good to live in places that have winter, where it freezes.
- 10:50 am
- Bugscope Teammost insects only live around 1-3 months.
- Bugscope Teamunfortunately bed bugs can live a lot longer
- Bugscope Teamonce an insect grows wings, it is an adult and will not molt again
- TeacherMy students want to know how you can tell how old they are.
Bugscope Teamactual age is pretty hard to determine, but you can make fairly good guesses since insects undergo molts and changes at fairly regular intervals until they're adults
Bugscope Teamregular intervals assuming they are getting the food they need.
- Bugscope Teamthis is a beetle with kind of exaggerated mouthparts; you can see the mandibles and the palps, as well as the antennae
- TeacherWhat is the life span of a bed bug?
Bugscope Teamthey can live around a year to a year and a half
Bugscope Teamthey can live for around a year without food as well
Bugscope Teamwhich makes them all the harder to get rid of
- Bugscope Teambeetles often have two sets of palps, which are like accessoty mouthparts
- Bugscope Teamaccessory...
- Bugscope Teamspeaking of beetles and age, there has been reports of longhorned beetles that came out of 40 year old furniture (slowly developing in the wood all that time).
- 10:56 am
- TeacherMy students see now why they are called dirty beetles.
- Bugscope Teampalps have sensillae and setae that help them taste their prospective food
- TeacherLooks like a finger print
- Bugscope Teamthis is a better view of ocelli
- Bugscope Teamand this is a beetle's head -- a cleaner beetle than the last one
- Bugscope Teamtheir mandibles open side to side, like a gate
- 11:01 am
- Bugscope Teamyou can also see that the antennae connect to the head in a ball-and-socket arrangement, like the human femur connects to the pelvis
- Bugscope Teamyou can see the compound eye quite well here
- TeacherWhat are the smaller projections?
Bugscope Teamthe smaller projections are the palps Scot talked about earlier (if they're the ones nearer to the bottom-center of the screen)
- TeacherDo they have full rotation of their antennae?
Bugscope Teami dont think they can rotate all the way around, but I'm not sure. Owls can do that with their heads.
- 11:07 am
- Bugscope Teamthis is pretty cool -- something we have not seen on ants in the past
- Bugscope Teambecause we are used to imaging stinkbugs, we think we recognize a similar function in these
- Bugscope Team where are these in the ant's abdomen?
Bugscope Teamnear the very end
- TeacherMy students are a bit hungry. They can't decide if these look more like oyster crackers or banana slices.
- Bugscope Teamhahaha i thnk oyster crackers
- TeacherWhat is the function?
Bugscope Teamwe do not know for sure, but we believe that this species of ants is one that produces formic acid to dissuade predators from eating it
Bugscope Teamand we think that the ant does not like the formic acid any more than the predators do, so it has an absorbent area to keep the scent of the formic acid away from its antennae
- Bugscope Teamhahaha
- Bugscope Teamnow I am hungry too
- 11:14 am
- TeacherAren't there beetles who eat these types of ants in order to also protect themselves from predators.
Bugscope TeamI don't know about eating ants to sequester the formic acid, but there are ground beetles that produce formic acid as a form of defense
Bugscope Teamwe know that horned toads have a formic acid requirement in their diets, and they eat ants. I imagine you are right about the beetles as well. We have seen that insects take advantage of any available option.
Bugscope Teamthere are also beetles that live in ants nests and eat the ants' larvae
- Bugscope Teamformic a
- Bugscope Teamformic acid was first distilled from red ants; that is where its name comes from
- Bugscope Team'formica' is Latin for ant
- Bugscope Teamthese are brochosomes, which are actually nanoparticles
- Bugscope Teamthey are usually about 250 to 400 nm in diameter
- Bugscope Teamwe have never had a bombardier beetle in the'scope
- TeacherWhat is their function?
Bugscope Teamthey are said to help leafhoppers keep their eggs from drying out
- 11:19 am
- Bugscope Teamwe find brochosomes on lots of insects, but they are said to be produced only by leafhoppers
- Bugscope Teamleafhoppers have what is termed an 'anointing behavior,' in which they spread brochosomes over their bodies
- Bugscope Teamwe are looking at particles that are smaller than the wavelengths of visible light (400 to 700 nm)
- TeacherDo they use their wings?
Bugscope TeamI think they use their wings in a minimal fashion, like for short distance flying
- TeacherHow do they spread the brochosomes?
Bugscope Teamthey use their limbs, which have little pads at the ends, with small claws as well
- Bugscope Teambrochosomes are pretty light that they can travel to other insects pretty well
- 11:25 am
- TeacherI think it is the Bombadier beetle that eats ants and uses their formic acid as a defense. The shoot it out of their abdomens.
Bugscope Teamhmm that could definitely be true. bombardier beetles are a subset of ground beetles, and they have the specialized chambers that mixes chemicals that react and create a high temperature causing the bursts
Bugscope Teamthere are also false bombadier beetles, and these beetles have formic and acetic acid as the main parts of their chemical defense
- Bugscope TeamBombardier beetles mix hydroquinones and hydrogen peroxide, I believe
- TeacherIs that why they think that the leafhopper is the only one that makes them? The ones that you see on other insects were spread to them?
Bugscope Teamthe people who study leafhoppers have told us that only leafhoppers produce brochosomes, in the Malpighian Tubules inside their bodies
- Bugscope TeamMalpighian tubules are part of the excretory systems of some insects, and they have osmoregulatory functions as well as other specialized functions
- TeacherDoes this just grasp aphids?
Bugscope Teamthis helps taste or smell food
- Bugscope Teamosmoregulatory would mean, in this case, keeping a balance between liquids and salts inside the body
- 11:30 am
- TeacherMakes sense that the Malpighian tubules would create osmoregulatory structures for the eggs. Very interesting.
- TeacherOur class time is almost up. Thank you so much for your time and for answering our questions!
- Bugscope Teamno problem!
- Bugscope Teamthanks!
- Bugscope Teamwhen we look at butterflies, we see the colors our eyes permit us to see, but butterflies can see other colors as well, in the UV
- Bugscope TeamThank You!
- Bugscope Teamthanks!
- Bugscope Teamthe scales we are looking at now produce both pigment-based and structural colors
- Bugscope Teamhttp://bugscope.beckman.illinois.edu/members/2013-057
- Bugscope TeamBye! Thank you!