Connected on 2014-01-28 10:00:00 from Victoria, Texas, United States
- Bugscope Team getting ready for setup
- Bugscope Team sample is in the 'scope and pumping down
- Bugscope Team as soon as the vacuum is ready, we'll do some alignments and start looking around on the sample
- Bugscope Team we'll be saving the coolest things we can find as presets
- Bugscope Team vacuum is almost ready
- Bugscope Team hi!
- Bugscope Team welcome to bugscope. we are setting up presets now
- Bugscope Team we are ready to roll!
- Bugscope Team please feel free to drive now, to test things out if you would like
- Bugscope Team you have the option of selecting from any of the presets, on the lefthand screen, and you can also change the mag, focus, contrast and brightness...
- Bugscope Team right now region 3 has control of the microscope
- Bugscope Team please let us know if you have any questions or any problems
- Teacher thank you, can we ask questions
Bugscope Team absolutely!
- Bugscope Team this is a fruitfly tarsus -- the distal end of one of the legs
- Bugscope Team we can see the claw, and we can also see the tiny hairs, called tenent setae, that help the fruitfly climb on walls
- Bugscope Team region 3 can drive, change the mag, etc., so you could take the mag lower, for example, to see where you are
- Bugscope Team sweet!
- Bugscope Team this is a fly, and you can see that one of its compound eyes is caved in, a bit
- Bugscope Team because I'm sitting at the controls of the scanning electron microscope (SEM), I can drive as well, so I can fix things more quickly -- like fine focus
- Teacher thank you
- Bugscope Team this is the fly's tongue -- the sponging mouthparts of a housefly
- Bugscope Team normally this will be wet, to some extent
- Teacher is any of this debris or is it all part of tha anatomy
Bugscope Team yes some of what we see is debris, like the fungal hyphae that look like web, to the right of center
- Teacher could you zoom out and then in so they could see the entire thing first
Bugscope Team we can zoom out only to about 40 times magnification, so this is as low as we can go
- Bugscope Team the bubbly background are features on the carbon tape we mount the insects on
- Bugscope Team the lighter areas to the south is where i used silver paint to help glue down the insects and also to ground the specimens
- Bugscope Team when you have students with you, they can log on as students, like from a computer lab, and they can ask questions directly; we can also give them control of the 'scope, one at a time, with your permission
- Teacher do yo have any insect eggs that we could see?
Bugscope Team no sorry. we don't see them very often
- Bugscope Team this is the same structure we saw on the fruitfly, but more complex
- Teacher ok thank you
- Bugscope Team the furry pads are called pulvilli; each one is called a pulvillus, and it helps the fly climb on glass and on the ceiling
- Teacher do you have any amoebas or paramecium
Bugscope Team they wouldn't look very good unless we took some time fixing and preparing them for the scanning electron microscope
- Bugscope Team they are soft
- Bugscope Team insects have exoskeletons, so they retain most of their shape when they dry out, making it easier to prepare them for the microscope
- Bugscope Team we use insects and comparable arthropods because they require little prep, and it is easy to conceptualize what you are seeing
- Bugscope Team we can arrange to image things like amoeba and paramecium if someone wants to send them and gives us advance notice
- Bugscope Team this is a fly compound eye -- you can see the ommatidia -- with a moth scale to the lower right
- Teacher could you describe what we are looking at?
Bugscope Team the rectangles are the individual facets, or ommatidia, of the compound eye. the other thing to the lower right is a scale
- Bugscope Team this is so cool
- Bugscope Team a cute little ladybug, not so cute as a larva
- Bugscope Team these are super small
- Teacher do you have any mealworms
Bugscope Team we do when people send them, and also darkling beetles; we don't have any on the stub today
- Bugscope Team we prepare a new stub of specimens for each session, and you're operating a $600,000 microscope to image them
- Teacher tell us about the butterfly wing
Bugscope Team the ridges on the scales we see now interfere with light, so they produce colors the same way you see colors when you look at the grooves of a record
- Bugscope Team the scales provide color for butterflies, moths, and silverfish. they are also a defensive mechanism. if they are trapped in a spider web, they can try to shed a few scales to get free
- Teacher if we send in insects do we send them alive or dead?
Bugscope Team we would prefer if they were send dead.
- Guest That is so cool!
- Bugscope Team those colors are called structural colors, and they can even be in the UV wavelengths, which some insects can see, and which we cannot see
- Bugscope Team they can be killed more 'humanely' by putting them in the freezer at least over night
- Bugscope Team wing scales also have pigment colors
- Bugscope Team wing scales function much like feathers do for a bird, but one of their primary purposes, as well, is to protect the insect from spider webs
- Guest Why is the wings rippled?
Bugscope Team the ripples make the scales a bit more rigid, like Ruffles potato chips
- Teacher Thank you so much, we will be exiting the session now.
Bugscope Team Thank You!
- Bugscope Team Harbaugh's if you are not associated with today's school, we will be happy to work with you a bit longer. We had scheduled this session for an hour.
- Guest If you have more to show and more time, we will gladly watch.
- Bugscope Team Harbaugh's we gave you control, if you would like to drive.
- Bugscope Team this is a 'baby' ladybug
- Guest What is the powder/dirt looking stuff on the bug?
Bugscope Team there is a lot of juju on the ladybug larva, and there may, on this one, be a biofilm
- Bugscope Team biofilms are laid down by bacteria, and they're like a gel that protects bacteria from being, for example, washed off
- Bugscope Team ladybug larvae are predators, and we were just saying that they are like fearsome warriors with the skulls of their prey hanging from their belts -- you can see the aphids they have eaten stuck to their bodies
- Bugscope Team this is a dragonfly
- Bugscope Team they are highly evolved predators, themselves
- Bugscope Team they have an almost 360 degree field of view
- Bugscope Team this is the head of one of the ladybug larvae, and to the right and lower we can see the biofilm
- Bugscope Team these have simple eyes so they don't see as well
- Bugscope Team tiny antennae
- Bugscope Team the stemmata -- the simple eyes -- are little mounds that often collapse/deform
- Bugscope Team so to the middle of the image now, and on the bottom, is stemmata
- Bugscope Team a stemmata, or whatever singular is for stemmata...
- Bugscope Team ant head
- Bugscope Team we can see the compound eye now, and you could actually count the ommatidia
- Bugscope Team whereas the dragonfly may have 30,000 ommatidia per compound eye
- Bugscope Team the right antenna is broken off
- Guest That's a lot!
- Bugscope Team and near the base of the right mandible we can see some scales from a moth or butterfly, perhaps
- Bugscope Team almost all ants we ever see are female
- Guest why is that?
Bugscope Team it's more efficient, I guess; good question. insects and some other animals sometimes have the ability to be parthenogic, so they don't need males
- Bugscope Team males are only needed for one thing- for reproduction
- Bugscope Team when we see male ants, they have wings; that is because they would be flying out to mate with a queen ant, and the queen flies out so that she can get a different complement of genetic material
- Bugscope Team the queen ant can fly, has wings, at an early stage
- Bugscope Team when she comes back, and has mated, some of the worker ants will clip her wings
- Guest This all has been very interesting! Thank you so much for your time. We all learned something new today.We are going to sign off now. Have a great day!
Bugscope Team Thank You! See you later!
- Bugscope Team thank you for hanging around!
- Bugscope Team gone