University of Minnesota

Ecology Fair University of Minnesota Monarch Lab

Abstracts from Willow Creek Middle School 2007

Willow Creek Middle School
2425 11th Ave SE
Rochester, MN 55604

Year: 2007
Teacher(s): De Cansler

How's It Growin'?

Morgan W

This is a study of how the variable of fresh v.s. frozen milkweed affects the growth and development of monarch butterfly larvae. I used 20 monarch eggs: 10 in each treatment. My results showed that the average mass of larvae fed fresh milkweed was 1523 mg, while the mass of larvae fed frozen milkweed was 1398 mg. ; the average mass per millimeter o of larvae fed fresh milkweed was 44 mg per mm;the average mass per millimeter fed frozen milkweed was 31.78 mg per mm. The uncertainites come from having only 10 larvae in each treatment. More larvae would be better. In the future, I would like to find out why it took the larvae that ate fresh milkweed longer to become butterflies than those fed frozen milkweed. I would also like to find out if there are additional health shortcomings that appear to be caused by eating frozen milkweed.

Monarch Mountain Dew

John L

I put 3 monarchs on three different types of mountain dew.

I wanted to know which type they would prefer.

I found that monarchs tended to stay on the mountain dew regular longer than diet mountain or gamefuel mountain dew.

An error that might exist is that some monarchs may have different preferences.

I learned that it is hard to keep monarchs drinking and that mountain dew is popular even for monarchs!


Joe D, Kelly W, Hannah S, Calli R

The Effect of Vibrations and Low Frequency Sound Waves on Monarch Larvae, Superworms, and Earthworms

Chris S

In our experiment, we noted the results of when we put Monarch caterpillars, superworms (over-large mealworms), and earthworms on a vibrating surface or a surface with low frequency sound waves running over it. We were trying to determine what would happen if we subjected each bug to these conditions. We found that in all of the eleven trials we did on various surfaces and with variable sound waves, the superworms would go to the sides of the petri dish they were in and try to climb up them, the earthworms would tangle themselves into a big knot, and the Monarch larvae would "bob" their heads (move their heads up and down). Their may be some error or uncertainty in this, because we only used five of each different insect. Also, we could have done more trials that were longer or that used more, different vibrations. Two new things I learned from this experiment are that superworms climbed up the side of the dish instead of bobbing their heads like we thought they would, possibly trying to get to higher ground, and that earthworms tied themselves in a huge knot, instead of climbing to the top of the Petri dish like when they come out of the ground when it rains.

The Favorite Type of Soil of Superworms

Haonan D

In my experiment, I put superworms in an animal behavior tray to find out what kind of soil they like. Their choices were normal soil, soil mixed with fertilizer, mud, and soil mixed with decomposable materials. I used 10 superworms and tried the experiment 5 times. For normal soil, there was a total of 24 times. For soil mixed with fertilizer, there was a total of 13. For the soil with decomposable materials, there was 10, and for the mud, there was only 2. However, only 10 superworms were used. That does not represent the entire population of superworms, especially not wild ones, because these were from a store. I learned that superworms did not like water, because they did not like the mud very much. Also, I learned fertilizer absorbs moisture, because I left the soil in the tray over night with a clear plastic covering on it, and the next day, there was dew on the plastic above all of the areas except for the area with fertilizer in it.


What color do monarch butterflies prefer?

Hunter M, Amanda K

In this project, I tested monarchs favorite color of flower. I was trying to determine if there was a difference in the color that the butterflies prefered. I discovered that monarchs preferes bright yellow and orange, because of ultra violet lights. The conclusion may have had a few errors because some light may have leaked through a crack in the door or a flower may have just more nectar than the others. Two things that I learned that is yellow is monarch's favorite color and that monarchs depend on ultra violet lights for sight or at least for seeing colors.  

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