• Insect Collection

    Overview

    This is a required project in which all Environmental Students will participate. It’s a quarter (not a semester) project that is equal to a test grade and the project is due on Thursday October 24th. **This project will NOT be accepted even 1 day late.**     There are 2 options in Mrs. Bittner's class

    Objectives

    Students will---

    1. be able to list characteristics of the Phylum Arthropoda
    2. be able to differentiate between the different Classes of Arthropods
    3. be able to identify the major Orders of the Class Insecta
    4. make a collection representing local Orders of the Class Insecta
    5. learn how to correctly display insects in a collection
    6. be able to give examples of anatomical differences between insects and other animals
    7. be able to use a key to identify specimens
    8. be able to use collection equipment
    9. be able to recognize and name common insects found in Loudoun County

    Project Directions (Option 1)

    1. By any method available and as demonstrated in class, including plastic containers, baggies, jars and nets, collect as many insects as you can to start with.
    2. For you project, you must have a total of 10 insects with at least 2 bugs per order and at least 3 orders in your collection.

    Clarification: You may have 2 types of flies, 2 types of grasshoppers, 2 types of bees and 4 different types of beetles. Or you could have 2 flies, 2 bees, and 6 beetles. Or, you could have 2 flies, 2 beetles, 2 bees, 2 moths, and 2 dragonflies. Any combonations will work as long as you have at least 2 insects per order and you have at least 3 insect orders. No more than 10 insects will be accepted. (There are about 30 insect orders.…And NO, YOU CANNOT HAVE 2 IDENTICAL INSECTS!!!

    1. The fastest and most humane way to kill insects is to put them in the freezer while still in the container. The specimens should stay in the freezer just long enough to kill them and then removed. The time necessary will vary from about 15 minutes to several hours, or even overnight. Do not leave insects in the freezer for weeks or months! This dries then out so much that they crumble into pieces when you go to pin them.
    2. Identify insects by order and common name Use identification books found in the classroom, school and public libraries. Also, some websites can help you to locate the order of your insects and sometimes the common name. However, the websites have only limited usefulness (and accuracy) and all identifications should be double-checked using identification books.
    3. Using special entomology pins supplied by your teacher, pin insects according to instructions demonstrated by your teacher using 3 labels (also supplied by your teacher)—where found/date, common name, order. Failure to use these special labels will result in lost points, even if you have made your own. The correct order and positioning of labels will also be demonstrated. The pins will be given to you as you need them.
    4. Because the praying mantis is such a beneficial insect, we don’t want to kill them, so praying mantis in NOT an acceptable insect for this collection, and no, it’s not endangered.
    5. To display you collected insects, place insects in a “display case” which can be a box top or shoe box with Styrofoam in it or something similar. Examples of acceptable displays will be demonstrated in class.
    6. Pin a number (also provided by your teacher) beside each insect and make a key for your insects, either hand written or by computer. On the key, list the 10 numbers and then the order for the insect that corresponds to the number in your collection. This list must be included with your project.
    7. Exchanging duplicate insects with other students is allowed, and collecting with others is encouraged. You may involve your family, friends and neighbors in the collecting process.
    8. The insects must be from our region so something from North Carolina could not be used, but something from Maryland or West Virginia (northern part) could be.

    Project Directions (Option 2)

    1. Take pictures of insects to be made into ‘Baseball style’ trading cards.
    2. Follow directions for Step 2 in Option 1. You must have a total of 10 insects with at least 2 bugs per order and at least 3 orders in your collection.

    Clarification: You may have 2 types of flies, 2 types of grasshoppers, 2 types of bees and 4 different types of beetles. Or you could have 2 flies, 2 bees, and 6 beetles. Or, you could have 2 flies, 2 beetles, 2 bees, 2 moths, and 2 dragonflies. Any combinations will work as long as you have at least 2 insects per order and you have at least 3 insect orders. No more than 10 insects will be accepted. (There are about 30 insect orders.…And NO, YOU CANNOT HAVE 2 IDENTICAL INSECTS!!!

    1. Identify insects by order and common name Use identification books found in the classroom, school and public libraries. Also, some websites can help you to locate the order of your insects and sometimes the common name. However, the websites have only limited usefulness (and accuracy) and all identifications should be double-checked using identification books.
    2. Instead of creating a bug collection box, you will create a set of trading cards. On one side of the card you will have the picture of your specimen. On the other side of the card you will have the same information you would provide for the physical collection. Where were you when the picture was taken(be specific- back of Potomac Falls High school, back yard of 123 Smithswitch Ct, Sterling, VA), date, common name, order. You will need to assemble the cards so that the information for each insect appears on the back of the picture. You can do this with a printer or by cutting and pasting the pieces together. You will lose points for sloppy cutting and pasting.
    3. You cannot share pictures with other students. Your pictures must be the photographer.
    4. The insects must be from our region so something from North Carolina could not be used, but something from Maryland or West Virginia (northern part) could be.

     

Last Modified on September 11, 2019