Pill Bugs Turn Alternation Lab Report
Bio Lab 111
Nov. 15, 2012
Pill bugs are said to have some sort of turn alternation built in there cognitive functions, which causes them to take a zig-zag route rather than going along in a straight line for a long distance (Ono Tomohiro & Takagi Yuika, 2006). Distance does not play a factor in the pill bugs making turn alternation even if it is a forced turn, pill bugs will still make a zig-zag motion (Kupfermann, 1966). The zig-zag motion shows that pill bugs don’t have the ability to make two consecutive right turns.
In this experiment we tested the pill bug Armadillidium vulgare to see if it had the ability to make two consecutive right turns. We expected the pill bugs to go on either path; one path with all left turns and the other with all right turns, to prove the turn alternation theory wrong. I expected the pill bugs to follow through with this and go either way because of the food we had placed at each end of both paths would give the pill bugs some incentive on making it all the way.
Our group made two separate mazes; one was the control while the other was the experimental. Each maze had two paths, the path on the right side and the path on the left side. The right side had only right turns while the left side had only left turns. In the experimental maze there was a longer left side to see if the pill bugs became discouraged the farther they went to their food so that they may turn around and go down the other path. There was incentive at the end of each path; the incentive that we used was dead leaves, which is their favorite thing to feast on. In the mazes we then took 10 pill bugs and put them into an open square that was carved into Styrofoam board. After the pill bugs were placed into the carved maze, they then waited three hours and evaluated to see where the pill bugs would end up....
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