The Lizard Log

The Langkilde Lab in Action


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Starting the year with a bang!

2015 ended in style for the Langkilde Lab, and we are proud to report that thus far 2016 has been just as exciting! In the last few months, we have celebrated a number of lab accomplishments and enjoyed some attention from the media. Here’s a taste of what we have been celebrating:

 

Press:

LangkildeLizard 2Penn State News featured the lab’s work on adaptation to invasive species and anthropogenic noise in this great article by Matt Swayne, complete with disco references. It’s definitely worth the read!

 

Tracy1Penn State Science recently covered the lab’s research on the effects of stress, our collaborations, and Tracy’s mentoring style. The story quotes many lab members and also includes a “person-to-person” feature on graduate student Gail McCormick.

 

 

Other achievements:

  • PI Tracy Langkilde recently accepted the position as the Head of the Department of Biology.
  • Gail McCormick successfully defended her PhD dissertation and won the Alumni Association Dissertation Award. This award is among the most prestigious available to Penn State graduate students and recognizes outstanding achievement in scholarship and professional accomplishment.
  • Chris Thawley won the Intercollege Graduate Student Outreach Award, a university-level award that recognizes outstanding achievements related to bringing scholarship to the community. Chris will be defending in February and will be starting a post-doc with the Kolbe Lab in May, where he will be investigating the effects of urban light on anoles.
  • Kirsty MacLeod will be joining the Langkilde and Sheriff Labs as a post doc this spring. We are excited to have her!
  • Michaleia Mead will be staying on as a Masters student with Chris Howey. They will be investigating the effects of prescribed burns on amphibians and vernal pools.
Hooray!

Hooray!

Stay tuned throughout 2016 for more exciting research and updates from the Langkilde Lab!


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Science Communication and Art!

In addition to answering herp- and stress-related research questions, the members of the Langkilde are also very interested in outreach and science communication. I am personally quite interested communicating science and recently exercised my scicomm skills by interning with Penn State Research Communications. I wrote two stories over the summer and hope to write a few more later this year.

The first story covers the use of drones in research and conservation by recent Penn State Ecology graduate Jeff Kerby. Jeff does great work across the globe and is a photographer himself. Check out the story, entitled “Ecology on the Wing,” for more on his research and some of his photos. (For more of Jeff’s amazing photos, check out his flickr and instagram.)

Penn State graduate student Jeff Kerby used drones for his ecological research in Greenland and is sharing his expertise to enhance research and conservation efforts worldwide. Image: Martin Holdrege

Penn State graduate student Jeff Kerby used drones for his ecological research in Greenland and is sharing his expertise to enhance research and conservation efforts worldwide. Read the story at Penn State NewsImage: Martin Holdrege

The second story I wrote was a news story, which, unlike the “feature” story highlighted above, is written in AP (“news”) style and focuses on the results of a recently published paper. I summarized a study by Penn State Ecology and Neuroscience grad student Lauren Chaby, which was recently published in Animal Behavior. Lauren investigated whether stress in adolescence affects problem solving in adult rats. Read the story, entitled “Stress in adolescence prepares rats for future challenges,” for more information.

"Unpredictable stress can have dramatic and lasting consequences, both for humans and for free-living animals," said Chaby. Image: Lauren Chaby/Penn State

“Unpredictable stress can have dramatic and lasting consequences, both for humans and for free-living animals,” said Chaby. Read the story at Penn State News.
Image: Lauren Chaby

Thanks to my new connections at Research Communications, I was also able to revisit one of my other hobbies–paper cutting! As you may have guessed by our herp-flake holiday door, I am also a paper artist. I was commissioned to create three paper cut illustrations for a story about the evolution of skin color in the Penn State Research magazine.

Paper cut portrait of Nina Jablonski; Research at Penn State Magazine 35(2) Fall 2015

Paper cut portrait of Nina Jablonski, printed in Research at Penn State Magazine 35(2) Fall 2015

The story is based on the work of Penn State anthropologist Nina Jablonski. The first illustration is a portrait of Nina, based on a photo by Patrick Mansell. This is probably the most complicated portrait I have made to date!

Paper cut portrait of Nina Jablonski, created for the Research at Penn State Magazine.

Paper cut portrait of Nina Jablonski, created for the Research at Penn State Magazine.

Curious how this was made? Check out this work-in-progress video:

As part of Nina’s research, she and her colleagues created a map predicting skin colors of indigenous peoples based on ultraviolet radiation. I converted this map to paper for the story’s opening spread.

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The opening spread for the story, written by David Pacchioli.

Both the portrait and the third piece posed quite a challenge, as the black shadows blended into the background in one seamless piece. The third piece in particular was quite stubborn, but it turned out all right in the end.

Paper cut hands created for the Penn State Research Magazine. Based on a photo by Patrick Mansell.

Paper cut hands created for the Penn State Research Magazine. Based on a photo by Patrick Mansell.

I am very pleased with how these illustrations turned out! Pick up a copy of the magazine on campus to see them for yourself.

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Research | Penn State – Fall 2015. My illustrations can be found on pages 12-17.

You can learn more about my paper art on my website and facebook. I also take commissions–or at least, I will after defending!

 

Modified from a post originally at gailmccormick.wordpress.com.


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Adult Outreach

As Chris explained in his latest blog post, the goals of scientific outreach are numerous. One such goal is simply to interest others in scientific research. This is fairly straightforward to accomplish with kids, and there are many great opportunities in place to interface with young adults. Like Science-U, there are numerous annual science outreach events established for K-12 aged kids.

A few years ago, some of the Langkilde Lab participated in WPSU’s Eventapalooza, where we discussed the biology and ecology of cats. As Chris mentioned, getting people over to your table when you don’t have flashy demos or robots can be a challenge. Our solution: arts and crafts! Kids made “whiskers” to learn about sensory mechanisms and crawled through a maze while blindfolded to test them out! We also had plenty of coloring pages and a matching game to see how well different wild cat species blend into their habitat.

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Brad helping a young adult into their whiskers!

Jenny explains how cats hear.

Jenny explains how cats hear.

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My matching game demonstrates how cats blend into their habitat.

These types of events are great for kids, but there are fewer established opportunities to interact with members of the adult public. Scientific literacy—or at least interest—of adults is incredibly important, as adults utilize scientific information to make informed decisions about health and lifestyle. Additionally, adults can influence the outcome of science-related political issues. Science outreach for adults is thus quite essential, and something in which I have become very interested.

With this in mind, myself and a number of others from the Ecology Graduate Student Organization organized a Science Café series at a local bookstore.  At these events, two graduate students or faculty members present a five to ten minute Ted-Talk like presentation on a pertinent topic in ecology, such as invasive species or climate change. After each general, accessible presentation, the floor is opened for discussion with the audience. These discussions have proven quite fruitful, and we have received positive feedback about each of our events. Last spring, we held 3 Science Café events at Webster’s Bookstore Café in Downtown State College. At one of these events, I had the opportunity to present about stress with fellow grad student Lauren Chaby in an event entitled “Why is stress stressful? How animals and humans respond to challenges.”

Graduate Student Lauren Chaby discusses the consequences of stress. March 2014

Graduate Student Lauren Chaby discusses the consequences of stress. March 2014

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Moderator Andie Chan introduces graduate student speaker Danelle Laflower and Dr. Tomás Carlo, who spoke about Invasive Species in April 2014.

Following the success of last year’s series, we had two additional Science Café events earlier this year, and two more are forthcoming. If you are located in the State College area, I encourage you to attend! At our next Science Café (Wed March 18th at 6pm), Ecology graduate students Megan Keplar Schall and Will Miller will be discussing disease in wildlife and fisheries. This event is free and, of course, open to the public—bring your questions! More details are located below. Hope to see you there!

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“Wild animals get sick too! Case studies from Pennsylvania fish and game species:”

  • Wednesday, March 18 from 6-7pm
  • Webster’s Bookstore, 133 E Beaver Ave, State College, PA 16801
  • No cover charge. Drinks and snacks can be purchased from Webster’s.
  • Suggest Parking: Pugh Street Parking Garage

 

Our final Science Café event this season will be on Wednesday April 8th at 6pm, investigating the topic of soils, roots, and nutrients (and why we should care about these things!). Follow the EGSO website for more information.

These events are a great way to communicate the kind of research happening at the university that the community might not otherwise know about. They also provide an informal environment in which to ask questions. We hope the Science Café series continues for years to come!

 


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So Many Lizards

by undergraduate Tommy Cerri

This semester, being my fourth semester working within the lab, I like to think I have heard about all the research that’s been going on in one way or another. I had previously finished working with Bradley Carson last Spring semester on tadpole analysis and was eager to delve into something new. Dr. Langkilde got me in touch with Gail and we quickly met to discuss more work for the next 14 or so weeks. Taking 19 credits this semester and getting ready to apply to medical school rendered me nearly unavailable during the week. Gail of course knew the feeling and set me up on something I could do on my own time, at my own pace. This something was a project I had not heard of within the lab, and this excited me. When I went to meet she immediately brought up about 7 or so videos of lizards. The set up looked something along the lines of this.

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When I saw this I immediately asked myself a few questions. First, why are there so many lizards in this video? And second, what’s that huge log in the middle of their bins? Gail started to explain her research to me and answered these questions. She was observing the lizards’ behavior over a short period of time within these bins to see how they would react to different hormone treatments. This experiment allows us to see if treatment with stress hormones (corticosterone), sex steroids (testosterone), or both have lasting effects on behavior–like aggression. She also let me know that huge thing in the middle of the bins is just a small shelter. I have been spending my time watching these lizards show all different types of behaviors. I see some lizards spend 10 minutes running circles around their bins and other lizards so lazy I have to zoom in on their stomachs to check if they’re actually breathing! Some of the lizards aren’t very social.

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While others seem to be good friends with one another.

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Nonetheless, these videos have occupied much of my time and have continued to keep me interested. I look forward to see what Gail does with all the behavior charts I have filled out for her and am eager to help her with the next step in this experiment.

(Ed. note: Hopefully this helps us explain how hormones affect behavior. Maybe lizards dosed with testosterone are more aggressive? Maybe stressed out lizards are more solitary? Stay tuned for the results!)


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The Riveting Life of Jumping Beans

by undergrad Cecilia Zemanek

Being placed in charge of my first independent research project my 3rd semester, I was very excited to get started. Maybe a little bit too excited, as I happily signed up to present a poster for Tracy’s Undergraduate Poster Exhibition that was less than two weeks away. Needless to say, I miraculously managed to pull something off in that time frame and was relieved to have something ready for the judges. While at the event, Tracy introduced me to freshman Greg Reiley, who apparently had a huge passion for jumping beans. Tracy told me how he was looking to get involved with some research, and asked if I would like some help with mine. After seeing how much work it took just to collect one round of initial data, I realized any help would be extremely beneficial.

bean1My project involves looking at why some jumping beans posses more of a propensity to jump than others. It was thought that maybe it had something to do with physical constraints, so Tracy and I devised an experiment that would test the number of jumps per bean versus larva and pod size, larva body condition, and larval activity outside of the pod.

Greg analyzing a grub's length, width, and area.

Greg analyzing a grub’s length, width, and area.

From the masses and dimensions of both, the size of the pod and the size of the grub were both compared to the number of jumps. Body condition of the grub was also taken into account, using the mass of the grub compared to its length and area.

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Cutting open the bean reveals the grub inside!

Grub activity trial.

Grub activity trial.

It was very cool extracting the larva from its pod. Grub activity was observed with video analysis. I looked at the number of head thrashes, the number of grub contractions and distensions, and the number of grid lines crossed.

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Measuring bean temperature.

 

One interesting thing I saw was that as the size of the Mexican jumping bean increased, the slower the temperature of the bean rose.

 

 

 

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Greg hard at work!

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Cecilia with jumping beans.

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Many jumping beans!

Greg and I have been working hard collecting all the data we need. This week, we will be sitting down with Tracy to discuss the results. I am so appreciative to have the opportunity to work in such an amazing lab with such amazing people!

 


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Herpy Halloween!

While everyone else is dressing up as superheroes or their favorite monsters, sometimes herpetologists need to dress up as…herps! See below for some of the many variations on herp costumes that we’ve seen online and from friends over the past few weeks:

A fellow herpetologist, Matthew Lattanzio, sporting a Sceloporus undulatus halloween costume. Given the gorgeous badges this is likely a male, or a fabulously-bearded lady:

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If Matt were hugging a tree, no one would be able to see him with that camouflage.

Some of the most amazing herp costumes I’ve seen are the work of professional costumers making them for education and outreach purposes:

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This amazing mole kingsnake costume was made for the The Herp Project at UNCG by Sandy Durso, the mother of a friend (click on her name to link to her FB page for more costumes and photos!)

 

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This sweet hellbender costume was made for the Buffalo Zoo by Ellen Paquette (click here for her blogpost on the process and to see her handmade plush hellbenders…Christmas presents?!?)

We’ve seen people dressed up as fire ants as well!:

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Fire ants are attracted to candy, so this cute little fire ant will fit right in.

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Fire ants are apparently pretty popular as mascots as well! You can check out this customized one here (with moving mandibles), or buy your own on Amazon (just $1300!)

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And sometimes people dress up as fire ants (though this is a little fire ant, Wasmannia auropunctata) to spread invasive species awareness.

And last, but not least, sometimes people even dress up the herps themselves. Here’s a tortoise dressed up for the Ren Faire (Friar Tuck-His-Head-Inside-His-Shell perhaps?) by the Minnesota Herp Society to raise awareness and funds:

 


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Undergrad Research in All Its Glory

The Eberly College of Science held it’s first Undergrad Experiences Poster Exhibit last week, which I coordinated in my current role as the Tombros Fellow for Undergrad Research in the Dean’s Office. It was a huge success – if I do say so myself.

Signage directing students to the poster exhibit, and featuring Lindsey Swierk and ** and ** (undergraduate researcher lab alum)

Signage directing students to the poster exhibit, and featuring Lindsey Swierk and Erica Green and Edward Owen (undergraduate researcher lab alum).

We had 47 undergraduates present their research and international experiences, and over 300 attendees!! The place was so packed that it was difficult to move. OK, so many of these students were there because their professors mandated attendance; but they assure me they would have come anyway (right?). All evidence suggests that everyone got something out of the experience.

Early in the evening – you can see the line of students up the stairs in the background, waiting to get in.

Early in the evening – you can see the line of students up the stairs in the background, waiting to get in.

Standing room only.

Standing room only.

I had several goals for this event. Many of the attendees were first year undergraduate students in their very first semester in college. Many of them have heard and maybe even thought about becoming involved in research. This gave them the opportunity to see the types of research being conducted in the College, and to ask the presenters about their experiences. (I tell them that they should become involved in research, but it’s been a while since I was an undergraduate so it’s much better if they get this from their peers).

The presenters had the opportunity to talk about their research with a scientific audience. (There is a University-wide Undergraduate Poster Session, which allows students to present to a general (non-scientific) audience).

Several Departments and Programs across the College sponsored prizes, and we had over 30 judges volunteer their time to select deserving students.

Our Excellence in Life Science Research Overall Winner, Josh Bram, with our guest alumni judge Dr. McManigle.

Our Excellence in Life Science Research Overall Winner, Josh Bram, with our guest alumni judge Dr. McManigle.

Our very own Mark Herr took out the Outstanding Poster Presentation prize provided by the Center for Brain, Behavior and Cognition (the same project for which he received honorable mention at JMIH).

Me and Mark with his award certificate. With everything going on, we forgot to do this on the night. So we staged a photo with a “hand” from Chris Howey and Gregory Reilly (our newest undergrad lab member).

Me and Mark with his award certificate. With everything going on, we forgot to do this on the night. So we staged a photo with a “hand” from Chris Howey and Gregory Reilly (our newest undergrad lab member).

And Cecilia Zemanek definitely wins the award for “most-productivity-in-the-shortest-amount-of-time”. Cecilia decided she was going to do a poster before even starting her research – and only 1 week before the presentation. She managed to design an excellent project on Mexican Jumping Beans, collect and analyze the data, and put together a fantastic poster in just 7 days. Extraordinary!

Cecilia at the Exhibit with her poster, and in the lab working on her lighting-fast research.

Cecilia at the Exhibit with her poster… and some beans!


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Animal Behavior Conference 2014

While the rest of the lab was attending the JMIH meeting (read about it here!), I was headed toward the 2014 annual meeting for the Animal Behavior Society in Princeton, New Jersey. Armed with a Penn State Dodge Avenger, a fellow Penn State Ecology student and I braved New Jersey drivers and the unlabeled campus buildings ready to present our research! While campus was quite difficult to navigate at night to newcomers, during the day it was beautiful!

Photo from Wikimedia Commons.

Photo from Wikimedia Commons.

The fun part about traveling to a new place for a conference is being able to explore! This installation was particularly memorable…

heads2 heads1According to the internet, these heads were designed by Chinese artist and social activist Ai Weiwei. Apparently, these were based on sculptures located in Yuanming Yuan, an imperial retreat outside Beijing, that were originally designed by an Italian artist Giuseppe Castiglione in the mid-18th century. The original sculptures were stolen, and only 5 have been returned to China. In addition to having a neat source of inspiration, these heads are 10 feet tall and super weird and awesome. I approve!

Photo from Wikimedia Commons.

The plenary talks were located here. Photo from Wikimedia Commons.

Mornings began at 8am with plenary talks by some fantastic researchers in animal behavior. Dr. Iain Couzin started off Day 1 describing his work on collective behavior of swarms and schools, like those of locusts and fish. His lab applies theoretical principles from physics to help understand the ecology of these groups. So cool! In both his talk and many others throughout the week, I was amazed at the tracking software available to scientists. With this software, you can track each individual in a school of fish and other variables like position or velocity–all automatically! I was able to talk to Ian briefly during the dance (yes, scientists sometimes dance!), and he shared that his early research interests did not include collective behavior. Initially he wanted to study lizards, though he didn’t have many options in Scotland. I don’t blame him; lizards are pretty darn cool!

The plenary speakers gave their talks in this amazing room!

The plenary speakers gave their talks in this amazing room!

The other sessions took place on the other side of campus in the more recently constructed science buildings. Because we were presenting on a college campus (vs. at a conference center), most of the talks took place in big lecture halls. I’ve never given a talk to such a big room before! In my presentation, I discussed the terms we use to describe stress and what characteristics of stress are important when predicting the outcomes of that stress (I’ll share more details on the blog later!). I gave my talk on Sunday, the first “official” day of the conference, which left the rest of the week to relax and learn about animal behavior! Two other graduate students from Penn State presented their work, and a graduate student and two undergrads from Penn State gave poster presentations. All did a fantastic job!

Here Gabriel Villar, a grad student in the Penn State Entomology Department, just finished presenting his work on honey bees.

Here Gabriel Villar, a grad student in the Penn State Entomology Department, just finished presenting his work on honey bees.

Although my research doesn’t always include animal behavior, it was really neat to hear about the many techniques and study populations used to study animal behavior. Many research groups have long-standing study systems, having observed hyenas, meerkats, zebras, or primate groups for 10 to sometimes 40 years! They have some really neat research about personality, dominance hierarchies, and other group dynamics. And some really cool photos!

 

It was fun to meet so many interesting people and learn about their research during the conference. I look forward to the next one!


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SEECoS 2014: Madagascar Hissing Cockroach Project

The lab’s high schoolers from the Upward Bound Math and Science (UBMS) program SEECOS (Summer Experience in the Eberly College of Science) have been hard at work in the lab. Here is an update from Kiara and Jermayne, with some extra details from Melissa.

My name is Kiara Camacho and my partner’s name is Jermayne Jones from the Upward Bound Math and Science program. Our research assignment this year was “Measuring Stress: Is timing really everything?” The weather has not been cooperating with us lately, so on July 3rd our trip was cancelled to go hiking for lizards. Instead, we did an experiment to test stress in Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches. During this experiment we created our own habitat or arena for the hissing cockroaches using two 2-liter soda bottles that we cut open. We had one dark end and one light end with food or heat stimuli. We created the dark end by covering one soda bottle with a black trash bag. Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches live under leaves in the rainforest, so they are more comfortable in dark environments. In the wild, being out in the open could make hissing cockroaches more vulnerable to predators, and we wanted to see whether food or heat would persuade the cockroaches to face their fears and come out of the dark. After setting up our arena, we numbered the cockroaches and stuck them in the dark end. We left them in there for five minutes and measured how far they came out into the light end. We conducted a total of 6 trials (2 trials for food, heat, and control treatment groups). For food treatment groups we placed bananas covered in fish food in the light end of the bottle. For heat treatments we placed a heat lamp over the light end of the bottle, and for control treatments we did not place a stimulus in the light end of the arena.

 

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The Penn State Entomology Department was kind enough to lend us 25 Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches for our experiment. Photo by Melissa O’Brien.

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This image shows our experimental design. You can see that the cockroach is in the light end of the arena near the food (fish food-covered banana in this case). You can also see the dark end of the bottle with a black trash bag taped over the end. Photo by Tracy Langkilde.

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Two Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches in the dark end of the test arena. We labeled the cockroaches as number one or number two using masking tape. Photo by Tracy Langkilde.

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Jermayne and Kiara monitoring two hissing cockroaches during one of their trials. Photo by Tracy Langkilde.

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Kiara using a sharpie marker to mark the location of a hissing cockroach that ventured into the light end of the arena. Photo by Tracy Langkilde.

Our results showed us that the heat and food treatments convinced 50 percent of the cockroaches to come out of their usual dark environments to the light end (which is a dangerous battle zone for them). Only 16 percent of them came out when there was no heat or food on the other half of the bottle (see control treatment).

This graph shows the proportion of Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches that came out of the dark for each treatment. 50% of cockroaches came out of the dark for heat and food treatments, while only 16% of cockroaches came out of the dark in control treatments.

This graph shows the proportion of Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches that came out of the dark for each treatment. 50% of cockroaches came out of the dark for heat and food treatments, while only 16% of cockroaches came out of the dark in control treatments.

The results also show us that the food caused the cockroaches to come out farther than the heat did. This tells us that sometimes cockroaches will be brave and face their fears if the reward is great enough for them (Ex: warmth via heat lamp or fish food-covered sliced bananas). This experiment like many others had its challenges. One major challenge that we faced was an escaping cockroach coming out of the side of the bottle causing major panic between our research projects. On the other hand, we managed to catch the cockroach and return it safely to the bottle and proceed with our experiment.

This graph shows the distance Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches moved out of the dark for each treatment group. Cockroaches in the food treatment moved about 18 cm out of the dark and cockroaches in the heat treatment moved about 12 cm out of the dark. Hissing cockroaches in the control treatment moved about 6 cm out of the dark.

This graph shows the distance Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches moved out of the dark for each treatment group. Cockroaches in the food treatment moved about 18 cm out of the dark and cockroaches in the heat treatment moved about 12 cm out of the dark. Hissing cockroaches in the control treatment moved about 6 cm out of the dark.

To learn more about Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches, visit the Animal Diversity Web or this informational fact-sheet by Oklahoma State University.

 

 

 

 


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So You Have a Vet School Interview…Now What?

We have many motivated undergraduates in our lab. They often go on to do great things–but not always in ecology!  In this post, Courtney Norjen provides advice for interviewing for Veterinary School. Good luck at OSU, Courtney!

 

The road to veterinary school is a long, challenging one that involves hundreds or even thousands of hours of veterinary, animal, and research experience, high academic achievement, and additional extracurricular and leadership activities.  After years of preparation and spending hours completing the application, you have an interview!  But how do make yourself stand out in your interview?

Interviews tend to be very nerve-racking, so to make it as comfortable as possible, it is important to prepare.  The best thing you can do to prepare for your interview is to reread your entire application and your personal statement.  Anything that you wrote in your application is fair game for an interview question, so be sure you can talk about everything in there.   For example, I mentioned in my application that while working with a large animal veterinarian, I rode along to a swine farm that had a leptospirosis outbreak.  In one of my interviews, I was asked what kind of disease leptospirosis is, what organ systems it affects, and why it is an important disease.  They want to know that you really did what you listed on your application, that you learned from it, and that you are not going to try to make up an answer to a question you do not know.  Another good way to prepare is to search for lists of veterinary school interview questions on-line.  Be ready to answer the standard “tell me about yourself,”  “why do you want to be a veterinarian,” and “how do you deal with stress” questions, because they are asked in just about every interview.

In addition to answering questions about your experiences, you will likely be asked some ethical or “situational” questions.  A very common one is “what would you do if an owner brings you a perfectly healthy animal and wants you to euthanize it?”  These questions tend to be the hardest for interviewees because they are no longer about you, and many people are afraid to give the wrong answer.  The most important thing to remember about these questions is that there is no right or wrong answer.  You just need to be able to support the answer you give (especially when the interviewers challenge your position, which they undoubtedly will).  Some veterinary schools even use a Multiple Mini Interview (MMI) series where you will be asked nothing but these types of questions, so it is imperative that you are ready to answer them.

Lastly, the best advice I can give you is to be confident and be yourself!  They are interviewing you because they want to get to know YOU.  So before you walk in, take a deep breath, relax, and let your personality speak for itself!