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Ecology Fair University of Minnesota Monarch Lab

Abstracts from John Adams Middle School 2007

John Adams Middle School
1525 31st Street, NW
Rochester, MN 55901

Year: 2007
Teacher(s): Alissa Naymark

Aphid Pigment Experiment

In this experiment we tested to see if aphids can change color to match their plant’s color. We were trying to figure out if the yellow pigment found on Oleander aphids are permanent or not. We found out that after 3 days, with the milkweed dyed (which the aphids were feeding on), the aphids’ color did not change. The errors are that we should’ve let the aphids feed on the milkweed longer, and the uncertainty is that was the milkweed dyed enough? Well, after the experiment we found out that the aphids’ color was permanent and they did not react in anyway to their newly-colored food source.    


Black? White? Bugs?

Lily G

In this experiment I collected Box Elder Bugs to see if they liked white or Black better, I wanted to see if they liked light or dark colors better if both exposed directly into sunlight. In other words I wanted to see if they liked to sit in light or dark areas better [based on my observations]. I found out that they like lighter [white] colors better, there was always 3/4 out of 15 bugs on the white or none at all on black. My conclusion is that out of the limited amount of bugs I used they seemed to prefer the lighter colors better then the darker ones. Some uncertainties was the variable of sunlight [clouds or not], temepture, and wind [weather wise]. Another is the small amount of bugs I could use in my experiment. I learnt that you must be pacient and that I want to figure out why they liked light colors better, espically sience white reflects the light and black draws in the light, which leads me to that box elder bugs look so much different when they are babies to when they are adults. The younger ones can also be canables!


How much does light influence the flight pattern of a Monarch Butterfly?

Emily H

I put male and female butterflies in a wide tube that was dark at the top and lit up at the bottom. I was testing to see how much influence light would have on where the monarchs flew and if there was a difference between male and female. None of the butterflies went up, most went down. There was no difference between the male and female butterflies. What I didn't like about my experiment was the height of the tube, I would've liked it to be taller. I learned that monarch butterflies are greatly influenced by light.


The Gaulium Sphinx Larva

Zachary G

   Hi my name is Zach Grobstich. My project is about the gaulium sphinx larva.

   The hypothesis for my project is that the gaulium sphinx larva would choose the results of fresh dark or fresh bright. 

   The five options for the gaulium sphinx are netural, fresh dark, fresh bright, rotten dark, rotten bright. Their time limit is five minuites.There were eight larvaes and were a bit hungry. There were three tries for them and divide by three on each to see the average.

   The results were way off than my hypothesis. The results had two larvae average on every option they had except for netural which had an average of one larva.

   The things I could have done better was that I could have done netural bright and netural dark. That may have made a few changes. Never know they must be a non picky type of larvaes you can discover.


What's my favorite color?

Madeline F, Madison S

For our experiment we wanted to know what color monarchs are more attracted to. We knew monarchs are attracted to flowers, and we were wondering if it is because of their flowers color. If so we wanted to know what color they will be more attracted to. We used a box with a small round glass door and covered each side with a color; pink, white, brown, and black. Our hypothesis was that they would go to the brighter colors, pink and white. We tested two male and two female butterflies, letting them fly in the box by themselves for one minute. As we expected the butterflies landed on pink and white more than brown and black. One of the problems with our experiment was some of the butterflies landed on the wood by the door because of the light coming through. We learned that butterflies like colors that let light through. We also learned that you have to make sure only one variable is different to get an accurate result.


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