University of Minnesota

Ecology Fair University of Minnesota Monarch Lab

Abstracts from Skyview Community School 2005

Skyview Community School
1100 Heron Ave N
Oakdale, MN 55128

Year: 2005
Teacher(s): Lori Forkner

Hot or cold?

Elijah J

My question was, will the heat or cold affect the caterpillars' growth?  For my hypothesis I thought the caterpillars will live longer in the cold and they did.  I put two little caterpillars and three big caterpillars in each container.  Then I put one container in the cold and the other container in the heat.  I recorded that the heated caterpillars die faster and the cold lasted longer but then died.

Monarch Eating Preference: Sweet or Sour?

Jenna D

My question was "Do monarchs like sweet or tart fruits more?"  My hypothesis was that they would prefer tart fruits more that sweet fruits.  To test my hypothesis, I put a variety of fruits into their habitat and placed the monarchs on each of them to see which they would prefer.  They did not like the tart fruits.

Red or blue?

Mitchell H, Jacob C

Our question was what color is the adult monarch attracted to: blue or red?  To test this, this is what we did:  We put two pieces of red and blue tissue paper over two lights and put them on each side of the cage.  It flew to the red.  We observed that it went to the red.  We recorded that they went to the red two times and the blue once.  We found out that it went to the red more.

Sensing Butterflies

Geneva E

We are sensing monarch butterflies.  We are sensing movement, taste, noise, and sight. 

I think that that when we move the cage, the butterflies will not be active.  The results were that they did not seem to be affected by being moved.  They did not move much.

I think that when the butterflies are in the dark, they will not be active, but in the light, they will be active.  The results were that the butterflies were not active in the dark and more active in the light.

I think that when we put a radio on next to the butterflies, they will be active.  The results were that the butterflies were not very active.  Even with a scream, a dog barking, and a loud clap, the butterflies did not move much.

When we put lemon juice, honey and vinegar in the cage with the butterflies, I guessed that the butterflies would go to the honey because honey is sweet, and I think nectar is sweet.  The results are that the butterflies went to the vinegar sponge first, but a couple of them moved on to the honey sponge (the butterflies went to the vinegar sponge and acted weird).

I put a hairdryer that blew hot air onto the plastic cage where a butterfly was stuck to.  The butterfly moved its feet the same way people do when they step on something hot.  When I put an ice cube next to the cage where a butterfly was, I did not notice any reaction.  I held the ice in the same spot for a couple minutes.

Testing Taste Buds

Carla M, Nicole G

Our question was "what do monarch larvae prefer on their milkweed?"  Our hypothesis was that the larvae will prefer sugar water on their milkweed.  In order to test our hypothesis we did many things.  First we gathered milkweed.  Then we made sugar water.  Next we let the sugar water sit in the refrigerator for about thirty minutes.  Then we took three milkweed leaves and put a tablespoon of each ingredient (Coke, sugar water, and Sunny D) on each of the leaves.  Then we spread the ingredients among the leaves.  We placed the three leaves in the container and observed the larvae.  Finally, we saw that the larvae prefer sugar water on their milkweed.

What is the Average Weight of a Monarch Butterfly?

Veronica K

My question was "what is the average weight of a monarch butterfly."  To find this out, I raised 7 larvae to chrysalises to butterflies.  I then weighed them and then let them go.  Then I averaged the weights out to find out.  Finally I found the average weight which was half an ounce.

You Can Fly! You Can Fly! You Can Fly!

Nicole K

My question is "how does temperature affect the flight of the monarch?"  My hypothesis is that monarchs and like reptiles and slow down under thirty degrees.  First I filmed the butterflies in three temperatures which were thirty degrees, sixty degrees, and ninety degrees.  I then watched the tapes and was able to find out that my hypothesis was correct in that they are slower when it is colder.

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