University of Minnesota

Ecology Fair University of Minnesota Monarch Lab

Abstracts from Epiphany Catholic School 2008

Epiphany Catholic School
11001 Hanson Blvd
Coon Rapids, MN 55433

Year: 2008
Teacher(s): Betty Flanigan, Jean Klisch, Dawn Ressler, Kathy Trettel

Do cockroaches prefer hot eats or cool treats?

Isaiah S, Dominic D

We selected the Giant Madagascar Hissing Cockroach as a base for our project. Most people think that cockroaches are repulsive. However, others say that they are misunderstood. We've never had an experience with cockroaches and wondered what they were like.

We became curious as to whether or not temperature, either increased or decreased, affected their eating habits. To test this we placed one cockroach on a heating pad, one in the refrigerator, and one at room temperature on a table.

Environment Critics

Steven C, William S, Nick S

The purpose of our project on the giant Madagascar hissing cockroach was to find out what type of terrain they prefer. In our experiment, we used a 9 X 18 inch plastic container. We tested four terrains, two at a time. When we experimented, we would put one type of terrain on one side, and the other type of terrain on the other side. We would put the water and the food in the middle, so it wouldn't effect our results. After that, we would place the cockroaches in the middle of the box. We would wait until each cockroach would select an environment. Then, we entered the statistic into a log.. This process was repeated every morning, afternoon and evening for two days, until we altered the terrains. Every two days, we would calculate out results,and see which terrain was their preference. Our results were that they preferred light sand over rocky sand, and gravel over grass. Then, we compared light sand and gravel, and out of the two they preferred gravel.

In our conclusion, the giant Madagascar hissing cockroaches liked gravel terrain over all the others.

How Big Are Your Ladybugs?

Anna K, Amanda M, Bailey B, Allie P, Megan D, Jillian G

Our project is on the growth and development of ladybugs which includes a large model. This museum piece helps visualize the adult ladybug and aid in the explanation of their life cycle. The 3-dimensional piece is constructed of a cardboard box, newspaper, plastic bags, metal meshing, plaster strips, and wood. The armature, that supports the structure, is a cardboard box. We gave it shape by stuffing plastic bags full of newspaper and attaching them to the box inside a cage of mesh. The mesh allowed us to have a rigid surface to apply the plaster strips, which are much like paper mache. Once the body was done we connected it to the legs, made of wood. Finally, we painted the piece with the distinctive spots of the ladybug.

How Do You Feel About That?

Chris D, Steven M

For our project we chose to work with Bess Beetles because they have not been used for our school's Insect Fair entry. We thought it would be a fun experience because Bess Beetles have many interesting characteristics such as eating their own feces and making a squeak when they are disturbed. For our experiment we wanted to find out what would make them squeak. We came up with a few different ways to make them displeased such as burying them, flipping them over, and making loud noises in their presence. We gathered the Bess Beetles together in a cage and carried out each way of bothering them.

Light or Dark?

Kathryn M, Kelsey V

We chose to do this project because we wondered if millipedes liked eating better in the dark or in the light. Three millipedes where put into three separate containers which were like their basic habitat. One millipede was put in the dark for three weeks and the other was put in the light for three weeks. The third millipede was left in the light during the day and dark at night. It acted as our control. The millipedes were weighed six times over the course of three week to find out if they were getting heavier or lighter as time went on.

Monarch Power

Lexi P, Sydney S, Amanda S

We were curious to investigate how temperature affects monarch chrysalises. We decided that for our experiment, we would put ten chrysalises into a refrigerator (4°F) and stored ten at room temperature (21°F). After observing the chrysalises for two weeks, we noticed that the room temperature monarchs emerged much faster than the monarchs in the fridge. Eight chrysalises in the refrigerator started turning unusual colors, such as browns, yellows, and light greens. Besides discoloration they appeared to be sagging, like the butterfly was crumpled up at the bottom of the chrysalis.  After additional days in the colder temperature, the chrysalises were sagging even more, but a few looked normal. By this point, none of the chrysalises in the refrigerator had emerged, and all of the room temperature monarchs had. Towards the end of our observations, we noted that two of the chrysalises were shriveling up. Sadly, when we concluded our experiment, not even one of the refrigerated monarch butterflies had emerged. Our results showed that obviously the chrysalises at room temperature emerged faster than those at 4°F, in the refrigerator.

Was that a Millipede on My Apple?

William R, Ian D

We selected millipedes for our experiment because we wanted to know whether or not millipedes prefer rotten fruit over rotten leaves. To figure this out we placed them in a fish tank. We then put rotten leaves in one side and rotten fruit on the other at around 7pm each night. When it got dark, around 8:30-9pm, we compared the amounts of millipedes eating the fruit over the rotting leaves. So far it appears that millipedes preferred rotten fruit over rotten leaves. This supports our hypothesis, Ha2.

What's That Smell?

Greta H, Emily F, Rawlin K, Megan F

Our research was designed to discover which end of a nightcrawler is affected more by a particular odor. In our experiment we used several different liquids. To get more accurate results, we tested each liquid on two nightcrawlers. We dipped a Q-Tip into each of the liquids and held it approximately half a centimeter away from the head. Then we did the same on the anus. After we finished the experiment, our results supported our hypothesis Ha1.

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