Lab 1: Insect Diversity and Evolution
Insects dominate the Earth with vast diversity and number of species. They are arthropods that have articulate appendages, a hard exoskeleton, compound eyes, and an open circulatory system with a dorsal heart. Insects have large populations in many habitats, even urban environments such as Chicago. Insects are close relatives to Myriapoda, Chelicerata, and Crusacea organisms (Hoffmann 63). They are incredibly important for research and studies, as they are extremely advanced in their adaptation to different environments. They are an integral part of the ecological systems that they inhabit.
The objectives of this lab were to begin by gathering different orders of insects and document as much information about them, such as the environment they were found in. These insects were gathered near the Lincoln Park conservatory.
Materials and Methods:
For data collection of insects, the class went to the North Pond Nature Sanctuary. A large and small net were used to catch various insects. Gauze that was previously soaked in ethyl acetate was used inside of a sealed glass jar to euthanize the insects that were caught. The insects were then placed into a ziplock bag to be stored in a freezer to preserve DNA structure. Environmental data was also collected regarding each insect sample. The date and time was recorded. The temperature was recorded using weather software on a cell phone. The location of the insect was recorded as well as the amount of sunlight, weather, and general moisture level. All of this data would yield a sufficient amount of background information about the specimens.
Results and Discussion:
The first species that was caught was a Butterfly that belongs to the Lepidoptera class. They are aerial insects that have one pair of wings. They are part of the Holometabola subclass and undergo complete metamorphosis with four distinct...
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