Connected on 2011-09-07 13:00:00 from Kane, Illinois, United States
- Bugscope Team setting up...
- Bugscope Team sample is in the 'scope and pumping down
- Bugscope Team Hello!
- Bugscope Team Welcome to Bugscope!
- Teacher Hello. Did you receive our cicada and japanese beetles in the mail?
- Bugscope Team yes we did!
- Bugscope Team this is an earwig
- Bugscope Team we connect with you at 1, right?
- Bugscope Team we usually start early to set things up, and we were not quite finished
- Teacher Yes, just setting up, thanks!
- Bugscope Team so please give us a few more minutes to get all of the samples located
- Bugscope Team we included a few other insects so you have a lot to look at
- Bugscope Team this is your cicada!
- Bugscope Team hi Missy!
- Bugscope Team Welcome to Bugscope!
- Teacher how do we view the cicada in the microscope? it appears to be rolling thru all bugs in photos
- Bugscope Team AJ we are done and ready when you are.
- Teacher ready, we would like to see the cicada, how do we do that?
- Bugscope Team if you go to the lefthand screen you can click on any of the cicada presets
- Bugscope Team this right now is its right eye
- Bugscope Team you can change the mag, use click to center on the screen to drive around, etc.
- Bugscope Team this is live imaging -- you are controlling a $600,000 scanning electron microscope from your house
- Bugscope Team this is the part of the head that is like a suction pump; it holds the apparatus that allows the cicada (a 'true bug') to suck sap out of branches
- Bugscope Team insects are a lot hairier than they seem
- Teacher Wow. It looks hairy!
Bugscope Team the tiny hairs we see are called 'setae,' and pronounced see-tee
- Bugscope Team cicadas seem very smooth when you see them, but surprisingly aren't so much
- Teacher Is it true that cicadas have a beak?
Bugscope Team ha yes. They have a proboscis, which can be like a beak or trunk. They use it to drink liquids
- Bugscope Team like a straw
- Bugscope Team it is one of the presets
- Teacher When Jeri-Ann touched a cicada, it made a sound like an alarm went off. What could this be?
Bugscope Team it was an alarm, in a way, intended to frighten or surprise you into leaving it alone
- Bugscope Team they can make sounds of up to 120 dB which is near the threshold of pain for the human ear
- Teacher Jeri-Ann thought she was imagining that alarm sound.
- Bugscope Team it is called a 'shriek' in one place I looked, and it is said that the males are the ones that do it
- Guest what do they use the hair for?
Bugscope Team hair in insects is often used as part of the sensory system
- Bugscope Team because insects have an exoskeleton, it is like they are wearing a coat of armor all of the time; they don't have skin with nerve endings in it like we do
- Bugscope Team they can't feel things like we can through our sensitive skin. They have hairs that are attached to nerves beneath their exoskeleton that allows them to feel or sometimes they are more specialized than that. Some can sense different chemicals for tasting/smelling
- Teacher ok, then his name is Screetch
Bugscope Team ha totally cool
- Teacher what do cicadas eat?
Bugscope Team they drink plant sap
- Bugscope Team this is one of Screetch's compound eyes
- Bugscope Team they use their beak to penetrate little branches to get to the sap
- Teacher is plant sap sweet like in flowers?
Bugscope Team it is in some plants/trees
- Bugscope Team the compound eye has thousands of tiny facets called ommatidia
- Teacher Do cicadas see very well?
Bugscope Team no not too well, and if they can than they are just too clumsy to utilize them well. They have big enough eyes to see, but they often crash into things
- Teacher where do cicadas live?
Bugscope Team they spend most of their lives underground, as larvae; when they come up out of the ground they live in the trees and shrubs
- Teacher Wow, Screetch and Crash!
Bugscope Team kind of goes together, like Starsky and Hutch
- Guest when do cicadas mate?
Bugscope Team not long after they pop up out of the ground and shed their shell, becoming what we are used to seeing
- Teacher maybe we could include cicadas in our diet then!
Bugscope Team good protein
- Teacher do cicadas have any enemies?
Bugscope Team small animals like to eat them. They are high in protein
Bugscope Team there is also the cicada killer wasp. And apparently the cedar beetle which are parasites of cicada nymphs
- Teacher do they die after they mate? what is their lifespan after becoming an adult?
Bugscope Team they live for around a month after they emerge. They spend most of that time mating.
- Bugscope Team not all cicadas are 13 or 17 year cicadas; others may live underground, as nymphs, for 2 to 5 years
- Guest our dogs always dig them up
- Teacher how do cicadas make their noise? Like a cricket?
Bugscope Team they have things called tymbals on the sides of the abdomen, and they flew their bodies to make the tymbals click -- loudly!
- Teacher Well, it is good protein!
- Teacher Are cicadas our friends or enemies in the garden & around the house?
Bugscope Team generally they are not a problem, but they do break a lot of small tree branches when they inject their eggs into them
- Teacher Do crickets make their sound like cicadas do?
Bugscope Team I don't think so. I think most crickets rub their legs against their bodies or other portions of their legs to make the noises we hear.
- Teacher Do all cicadas look the same or are there differnt kinds of cicadas?
Bugscope Team there are different kinds. I haven't seen any other kind in Illinois, but in Australia there is one that is all green like a grasshopper
- Guest What are the evolutionary benefits of being in the ground for 17 years and then emerging
Bugscope Team one advantage is that they are not predictable to predators; if they only come out of the ground en masse 13 or 17 years apart, no predator can wait that long to eat them exclusively
- Teacher I guess they get to look forward to mating for a month when they get out!
Bugscope Team ha maybe so. they certainly make enough noise looking for mates
- Guest do they eat anything other than tree sap?
Bugscope Team when they are nymphs, underground, they suck the xylem out of roots
- Bugscope Team we usually stick them on their backs because they are more interesting this way
- Teacher Are japanese beetles our friends or enemies in the garden? They seem to love to eat leaves
- Teacher YOu guys have been great! Can we look at the japanese beetle now?\
Bugscope Team these are a couple of the Japanese beetle's claws
- Teacher What do they use their claws for?
Bugscope Team they use them to grab onto things like food or for support
- Teacher They are hairy, too! They seem so smooth
- Teacher How long do japanese beetles live?
Bugscope Team it's about a month to a month and a half
- Teacher they do so much damage in that short time.
- Guest what is their diet?
Bugscope Team they like to eat the foliate and flowers of plants and trees
- Bugscope Team I've seen them pigging out and mating on a peach tree one summer
- Guest cool
- Teacher Are they from Japan?
Bugscope Team yes they are native to Japan and were first seen in the US in 1916
- Bugscope Team Japanese beetles are big pests -- much more than cicadas
- Teacher Are japanese beetles pests in Japan too?
Bugscope Team not so much. They seem to have more natural predators there
- Teacher Do japanese beetles have any enemies?
Bugscope Team there are wasps that prey on them, but not in great numbers; bacteria are also used on the grubs to give them a disease that will kill them.
- Bugscope Team there is a parasitic wasp that was brought over here from china to help control them. The wasps lay eggs in the beetle grubs
- Guest what are their predetors?
- Bugscope Team there are also tiny nematodes that will kill them as grubs, before they become beetles
- Teacher Are they hard to kill?
Bugscope Team i think they are mostly susceptible to pesticides (and the parasitic wasps) when they are grubs, which make it harder to kill them as adults
- Teacher So the become used to the poison when young?
Bugscope Team it only seems to work on them when they are young. For some reason as adults they are immune
- Teacher What makes their shell so colorful, as opposed to other beetles?
Bugscope Team I think the colors we see are likely, as often with insects, partly from pigment but also in part structural, as in insect wings
Bugscope Team the idea is there are many layers of the chitin (which is what the exoskeleton is made of) that create an interference with the light causing iridescence
- Bugscope Team ladybugs look pretty too, but not only are they destructive they are smelly
- Teacher They look so pretty but they are so destructive
Bugscope Team yes they do and yes they are.
- Bugscope Team ladybugs like to eat aphids, though, so we give them some slack, since aphids are destructive
- Bugscope Team yes thanks Scot
- Teacher It seems the more insects we bring in to control our destructive ones, more problems arise!
- Teacher Do they stay close to home all of their lives?
Bugscope Team they are said to be clumsy fliers, so they likely do not go far
- Bugscope Team I was reading that in Japan, they have natural predators, but I don't yet see what they are.
- Teacher they are the Kudzo of the insect world!
Bugscope Team that's right!
- Teacher Their 'skin' seems to have u shaped indentations on it up close. do you know what these are?
- Teacher Mr. Magoo? Can they see well?
Bugscope Team I don't think they see especially well, not like flies or wasps or moths
- Bugscope Team for*
- Bugscope Team not sure what the indentations are fot
- Guest looks like they have cobwebs on them
Bugscope Team the stuff that looks like cobwebs is fungus that probably came along after the beetle died
- Teacher That fungus makes sense!
- Teacher Do they have a sense of smell then?
Bugscope Team like most insects, they can smell very well. some of the tiny setae we see are chemosensors
- Teacher Can you tell us what chromosensors are or do?
- Bugscope Team actually, people use pheromones, which are chemical attractants, to try to control Japanese beetles
- Bugscope Team chemosensors can 'taste' the air and detect very small amounts of chemical scents
- Teacher Cool, we have lots of perfume in our house, we'll get right on it. The neighbors will thinks we're nuts!
- Bugscope Team ants, for example, communicate mostly through scent
- Bugscope Team perfume is an artificial pheromone in the human world
- Teacher Thank you all for all of your wonderful insight! Good luck this school year. We had a great experience!
- Bugscope Team Thank You!
- Bugscope Team http://bugscope.beckman.illinois.edu/members/2011-027
- Guest thank you so much, very interesting
- Bugscope Team below is your member page, which stores your images and today's chat session
- Guest This is a great program!
- Bugscope Team thank you, Missy
- Bugscope Team thanks for bugscoping with us today!
- Bugscope Team and Crayfish!
- Bugscope Team Missy and Crayfish are you with today's school or did you log on from somewhere else? Can you tell us where you're from?
- Bugscope Team Hello JLH270!
- Bugscope Team we were going to shut down soon, but please let us know if someone wants to drive the 'scope for a few minutes
- Bugscope Team ...
- Guest I logged on through my home computer. I learned about your program through the internet. I'm from the Chicago area, Riverside. I sometimes teach in Chicago and also at a Montessorri school (Alcuin) in Oak Park, IL.
Bugscope Team I just set you up to be able to drive, if you would like.
- Bugscope Team I'm sorry I am getting a lot of interruptions from other people on other 'scopes
- Bugscope Team but Crayfish you now have control of the 'scope
- Bugscope Team we allotted an hour for our school today, so we have a few minutes left.
- Bugscope Team these are tenent setae on the pulvillus -- the sticky pad -- on a fly's claw
- Bugscope Team you can change mag, select from among the other presets, and also use click to center to drive
- Bugscope Team like if you went to low mag and then clicked on the image the 'scope would center the sample where you clicked
- Bugscope Team setae are used to sense touch, or wind; also to smell; also to sense hot/cold; also as scales, which are modified setae, in butterflies, for example; and here as sticky hairs
- Bugscope Team okay... we are shutting down for today --- Thank You for connecting.
- Guest Thanks, much. I'll let you go now, but I would like to at some point send in some insects found at the Wolf Road Prairie found on milkweed. They are very interesting and colorful and also mating.
- Bugscope Team that sounds great!
- Bugscope Team yeah totally cool