University of Minnesota

Ecology Fair University of Minnesota Monarch Lab

Abstracts from Weaver Lake Elementary 2014

Weaver Lake Elementary
15900 Weaver Lake Road
Maple Grove, MN 55311

Year: 2014
Teacher(s): Shannon Comisar, Karla Juetten, Matt MacPhail, Mary Moran, Richard Veth

“Dark vs Light”

Sai M, Noah G

In this investigation we tested out many different cockroaches to find out if the MHC shows preference for dark or light. We tested each of our four cockroaches 3 times each.

“Flip for Your Life”

Traci C, Taylor S

What is the effect of gender on the time it takes for a Madagascar Hissing Cockroach to flip from their back to their front? In our investigation “Flip for your life” we tested 4 (2 males and 2 females) cockroaches on 4 different common substrates (soil, paper towel, plastic, and tabletop) to see which gender of the Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches would flip from their back to front faster. We wanted to know this because if these cockroaches were in the wild and they got flipped on their back they would not be able to survive if they couldn’t flip back over if a predator was coming and they would starve if they couldn’t get up even if there wasn’t a predator.

“Hide And Seek With Bess Beetles”

Jacob A, Wyatt A

We did this investigation about if the Bess Beetles show a preference for wood or leaves. We wanted to know which one they'd go to if they were in danger. We placed them in the middle and observed which one it went to.

Are You Hot or Cold?

Sasha T

Our group investigation was about far a cockroach could get in 30 seconds in different temperatures of soil. The cockroaches moved fastest in room temperature soil. The total distance for room temperature was 42 inches and for cold soil was 15 inches.

Come on in the Water Is Fine

Justin A, Layne B

In our study we wanted to find out how far hissing cockroaches swim in three different water temperatures. They swam farther in the 10 and 30 degree water. We found they swam least in the 20 degree water.


Aaga A, Quinn C, William A, Ammar A

Our project is about the food preferences of a Madagascar Hissing Cockroach. We chose and tested two fruits and two vegetables. We chose this project because we were interested in which food the cockroach would like when given the choice of bananas, apples, romaine, and carrot. The hissing cockroach seemed to like romaine the most because one of the hissing cockroaches spent the most time near this food choice. The second highest choice was banana because all of the hissing cockroaches spent time near this fruit.

Fast and Furious: (Cockroach Edition)

Abby S, Matia S, Veronica C

Have you ever wondered which gender of a Madagascar Hissing Cockroach moves further on soil? We tested if a male or female was faster on soil and it was really fun and easy. We built a cardboard runway to put the cockroach in and filled it with some soil. Then, we tested their ability to move!

Finding The Color In You

Bontu D, Ejatu B, Elena P

Our group decided on investigating color preferences with Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches. We all chose color preferences because we were curious how these insects would choose their choice of color. Would the hissing cockroaches only choose colors from their environment or colors that weren't common to their environment like neon colors? We got a cardboard box and put twelve by six inch construction paper using the following colors black, brown, green, and pink. We discovered that the hissing cockroaches chose colors that were in their environment, and only one out of the four cockroaches chose pink.

Finding The Shelter In You

Favor L, Triana G, Nyila G, Halimatu K

For our investigation, we wanted to see what kind of shelter a Madagascar Hissing Cockroach would choose in three minutes. The shelters we used were jungle, bran (instead of dirt), and grass shelters. We also timed how long they stayed in there. We used two hissing cockroaches (Squaggles the 3rd and Scathrine). The cockroaches were tested in three trials. We found out they like the bran shelter the best. They also stayed in the bran shelter the longest for the last trial.

Gotta Hop

Stephenie K, Hannah K, Paige R

We wanted to see of the gender of a grasshopper affected how far it would jump. We found the female jumped slightly farther than the male. We tested each grasshopper twice and combined their two jumps.

Grasshopper Attraction

Nik D, Rowan L

We did this project to see if a grasshopper is attracted to different colored fall leaves. In our trials we had four grasshoppers go to the green or purple leaf. Two were not attracted to any leaf.

Hide and Seek

Bella D, Hannah Z, Rianna G, Laura C

We learned that praying mantises have only one ear and a great sense of hearing and we wanted to test it out. So for our experiment we used three different praying mantises (Bob, Joe, and Freddy). First, we put a praying mantis in a box with leaves, soil, twigs, bran and played a predator noise (hawk, snake, lizard) for a minute each. We wanted to see what the reaction was on the praying mantis. Our only uncertainty was that Freddy (one of the praying mantises) flew out of the enclosures and we wonder if that changed our investigation. We learned that praying mantises are very smart insects and have an awesome sense of hearing.

Hissing Cockroach Investigation

Sam B, Dylan G

We investigated the Madagascar Hissing Cockroach by placing three different cockroaches in a box to see whether they went to the light or dark side. The results were that they went to the dark side seven out of nine times.

Ready, Set, Go!

Alex G, Tim L

We put darkling beetles on color tracks and recorded how long it took them to get across. We wanted to know if darkling beetles’ speed is affected by the color it is walking on. We learned that darkling beetles go fastest on red (30.429 sec) and slowest on yellow (46.629 sec).

Red-legged Grasshopper's Leaf Attraction

Deborah M, Thai N

We thought that grasshoppers would eat almost any green leaf. We put three different types of leaves out but only two out of five grasshoppers ate part of a leaf. The two ate from different types of leaves. We didn't know if they didn't like the leaves or weren't hungry.

Speed Test

Isaiah E

Our investigation is about how the weight affects how far the Madagascar Hissing Cockroach travels in one minute, and also to see the difference between a smaller and a bigger Madagascar Hissing Cockroach.

The Brighter the Better

Amy Z

We were curious whether grasshoppers are attracted to brighter or darker colors. We gave a grasshopper thirty seconds to go to bright orange, yellow, dark blue, or red paper. We found that four out of six went to the brighter colors.

The Crawler

Nathan L

The purpose of our experiment was to see how long it took for a bess beetle to get across a maze with the surface of dirt or sand. The farthest it went was 74 cm on dirt, and 48 cm on sand.

The Pulling Bess Beetles

Elias T, Bailey B, Talen C

We did this investigation to see how far a bess beetle can pull a penny. We used tape to attach a penny to a bess beetle, and taped down a paper track. Then, we baited the bess beetles with an apple slice and timed them for one minute. Next we recorded how far the bess beetle had traveled. We repeated this on two more bess beetles and got our data. We discovered that bess beetles are really strong and that each bess beetle that we tested kept going farther than the ones before it.

The Rainbow MHC!!!

Kevin A, Nishant M

Do you want to see what happens when cockroaches have to choose between different colored houses? What we did is we put a cockroach in a box with three different houses/shelters that are three different colors. We observed to find out what their color preference was.

The Swagger of the Bess Beetles

Gianni G, Langston P, Kaie M

"Does the weight of a Bess Beetle effect the weight a Bess Beetle can pull?" 5 different Bess Beetles were chosen by our group for the great investigation. We wanted to know if the weight of the Bess Beetle would affect the weight the Bess Beetle could pull. We measured the weight in grams and we made them pull pennies on a petri dish.

Up, Up, and Away

Willow A, Ashley A, Anna C

For our investigation we wanted to know if male praying mantises would fly farther in warmer or cooler air temperature. We tested three mantises to see how far they flew in one minute and a half. We found they flew farther in the warmer air. We could not get them to fly in the cooler air.

Who Turned Off The Lights?

Connor M, Nolan W

Our group wanted to know if a Madagascar Hissing Cockroach would move faster in light or dark. We tested three hissing cockroach to see how fast they would go in both light and dark. One of the uncertainties we came across is one of the hissing cockroaches seemed to be either mad or scared. In the end, we found out that hissing cockroaches moved faster in dark than light.

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