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Ecology Fair University of Minnesota Monarch Lab

Abstracts from Cloquet Middle School 2001

Cloquet Middle School
509 Carlton Ave
Cloquet, MN 55720

Year: 2001
Teacher(s): Cindy Edwardson

Does Sound Affect the Movement of the Butterfly?

Mary Jo C, Laura W

Our problem was does the volume of music affect the movement of monarch butterflies?  We predicted that Monarch butterflies would be more active when loud music was played and less active with soft music.  We played loud music for five minutes and then we turned the volume to a lower level and played it for five minutes, each time observing and recording their activity.  We continued this ten times for four butterflies. Some of our observing was in the morning and some was done in the afternoon. Our data analysis showed that the butterflies were a little more active with the lower volume music.  We also noticed the butterflies were more active in the afternoon than in the morning.  They may be affected by the amount of light coming in the windows in the afternoon.  Perhaps they are like humans, less awake in the morning.  Because they seemed to be affected by light, we may not be able to accurately determine if it was the volume of the music that affected their activity.  We would need to repeat the experiment and control the light and just have the volume of the music as the one variable.  A larger sample size could also help us determine if our results were correct.


Is there a Relationship between Male and Female Monarch Butterfly Proboscis Length and Wing Length?

Becky D

In this experiment I measured Monarch butterfly proboscis length and their wing length.  I was trying to determine if there was a difference in length of male and female proboscises. I also was trying to figure out if there was a relationship between proboscis length and wing length.  I randomly took a butterfly, sexed it, and measured both right and left wing length.  Next I took a hand lens, a needle, and a metric ruler, and measured the proboscis length in millimeters.  I set the butterfly on a sponge covered in juicy juice and pulled the proboscis out with a needle while laying it against the ruler for measurement.  I repeated these steps with 5 male and 5 female butterflies.  I also examined 8 dead butterflies.  I found out that the proboscises were the same length in both males and females no matter how long the wings were. Perhaps my proboscis measuring technique wasn't accurate enough.  Next time I would measure more butterflies.  I learned that none of my live butterflies had split proboscises but all of the dead ones did.  The proboscis length was the same in all of the dead and living butterflies.


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