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Fruit Fly Behavior Lab

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by

Maha Shaikh

on 17 March 2014

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Transcript of Fruit Fly Behavior Lab

Fruit Fly Behavior Lab
Introduction
The fruit fly can be found throughout the world and feeds on ripe or rotten fruit and the fungi growing on rotting fruit, hence the name fruit fly.
The fruit fly, also known as a drosophila melanogaster, are very small but despite their size, they have been studied by scientists for over 100 years.
Behavior terminology: taxis - an automatic oriented movement towards or away from a stimulus.
Chemotaxis: movement in response to a chemical
Phototaxis: phototactic response to light
Geotaxis: movement in response to gravity.
The Experiment
Determine fruit fly behavior and preferences for certain environment factors over others by giving them options in a choice chamber.
Materials
Drosophila flies (30-40)
Dissection pins (2)
Choice Chamber Tube
Foam Plugs
Permanent Marker
Ruler
Grapefruit
Avocado
Dates
Lime

Image by goodtextures: http://fav.me/d2he3r8
Maha Shaikh
Montana Barrall
Dhaval Shah
Shirali Shah

In this experiment, we tested the fruit flies' preference of a high pH fruit to a low pH fruit.
Acid vs. Base
1. Avocado: 7.0 pH
Grapefruit: 3.0 pH
2. Date: 7.5 pH
Lime: 2.5 pH
Hypothesis: If a basic fruit is placed at one end of a choice chamber and an acidic fruit is placed at the other end, then the fruit fly will prefer the acidic fruit.
Variables
Independent variable: acidic and basic zones
Dependent variable: Number of flies in the acidic and basic zones
Control variable: No Control
Methods
The flies have to be moved from the vial to the choice chamber using their
geotactic
response. The flies try to fly up at all times.
When they are in the choice chamber, they are to choose between an acid and base.
The number of flies in the 4 compartments are counted at one minute intervals for 20 minutes to see which fruit the flies prefer.

Data/ Results
Choice Chamber #1
Grapefruit (Acid) and Avocado (Alkaline/ Basic)
70% highly attracted to acid
25% slightly attracted to acid
15% slightly attracted to base
10% highly attracted to base
Based on twenty minutes of observation
Data/ Results
Choice Chamber #2
Lime (Acidic) and Date (Alkaline/ Basic)
25% highly attracted to acid
13% slightly attracted to acid
19% slightly attracted to base
44% highly attracted to base
Based on twenty minutes of observation
Conclusion
Based on the results, the hypothesis was partly correct.
In the first choice chamber the flies were more attracted to grapefruit(acid) than to avocado(base).
In the second choice chamber, more flies were found near date(base) than lime(acid).
The fruit flies prefer acidic substances but at the same time can be found near the basic environment too.
Usually found in the kitchen near vinegar, tomato juice, coffee and a few can be found near substances with relatively high pH.
Conclusion
Error- some flies were killed in the process of taking the grapefruit out of the chamber.
Due to the error the total number of flies decreased giving different calculations than the first trial.
The results could have been improved if there were more number of flies for the trials.
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