Isopod Lab Report - Katherine Roll Biology Lab 10/14/2005...

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Katherine Roll Biology Lab 10/14/2005 The Effect of Humidity on The Taxis of Armadillidium Vulgare Abstract The isopod experiment, based on observations in nature, was designed to test whether isopods prefer a moist versus a dry living environment. The experiment’s hypothesis is that the isopods, otherwise known as Armadillidium Vulgare , would orient themselves toward a moist environment. To carry out this experiment, Petri dishes (chambers) were placed adjacent to each other, two in an upper level and two in a lower level, directly above each other and separated by a mesh screen. One of the Petri dishes on the lower level had dry-drierite at the bottom to make a dry environment and the other had wet-drierite to produce a humid environment. The isopods were allowed to pass between the moist and the dry environments and the number of isopods in each dish was counted every thirty seconds. Using the sign test (Glase and others 2005), each trial was computed to see if there was a significantly higher number of isopods in the wet chamber versus the dry chamber. Trials 1, 2, and 4 showed significant differences in the numbers of the isopods in each chamber, but only trials 2 and 4 showed a significantly higher numbers of isopods in the wet chamber compared to the dry chamber. Given that only two of the six trials supported the experiment’s hypothesis, a conclusion about an orientation preference by the isopods could not be made and the null hypothesis was not rejected.
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Introduction Isopods, also known as pill bugs, are land crustaceans that are commonly found in forests, meadows, and house basements. Their scientific name is Armadillidium Vulgare . Although they are nocturnal, they sometimes can be found outside on damp foggy days. They feed on decaying matter, algae, moss, and bark. Isopods have a pair of compound eyes, two pairs of antennae, and fourteen legs (Glase and Ecklund, 2005). They originated in Europe but have adapted quite well to the North American environment (Leonard, 2002). Since isopods naturally exist in mostly moist environments, the hypothesis of this
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Isopod Lab Report - Katherine Roll Biology Lab 10/14/2005...

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