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Unformatted text preview: 4/7/08 Lab 10: Nest Recognition in the Harvester Ant PURPOSE: Students use statistical methods to quantitatively test the hypothesis that harvester ants cannot recognize their own nest. ABSTRACT: Students were given 10 harvester ants to be tested one at a time in 10 separate trials. Each trial consisted of placing one harvester ant in a Petri dish containing two unknown types of soil, and observing which type the ant walked around on and for how long. Five of these trials were conducted comparing the ants natural nest soil to soil from another nest, and the remaining five tests were comparing the natural nest soil to soil not belonging to any nest. During each trial, the students only knew the soil as type 1, 2, 3, or 4 and not as nest, foreign, or non-nest so as to minimize bias in the experiment. Each trial began by allowing the ant to accustom itself to the surroundings for two minutes, before beginning the full ten minute observation during which notes...
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This note was uploaded on 04/08/2008 for the course BIO 206L taught by Professor Unknown during the Spring '08 term at University of Texas at Austin.
- Spring '08