Category Archives: Physiology

How much water can ants drink?

Written by Joe Ballenger Your Name: charles Your Bug Question: How much can an ant drink of water? I thought this question about how ants drink was really cool. It’s a question that has a pretty simple answer at first, … Continue reading

Posted in Behavior, Ecology, Physiology | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Do insects feel pain?

The last two questions we tackled revolved around the cognitive abilities (communication, and personality) of arthropods, specifically insects and spiders. These are really tough questions to tackle because a lot of people, even (especially?) those who genuinely like insects and … Continue reading

Posted in Behavior, Physiology | Tagged , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Cockroach milk is not the next superfood. It could be a lot more important than that.

Written by Joe Ballenger A number of articles circulating everywhere online are claiming that a new ‘superfood’ has been found in cockroaches, and although I’m happy popular culture is focusing on the fact cockroaches are good moms…they’re missing a far … Continue reading

Posted in Chemistry, Culture, Developmental Biology, News, Physiology | Tagged , , , , | 6 Comments

Do insects have personalities?

Written by Joe Ballenger After our spider post, I thought it would be nice to tackle this question because these questions open one of the biggest rabbit holes in the field of insect science: Since you are the experts, my … Continue reading

Posted in Behavior, Developmental Biology, Ecology, Physiology | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

How similar is Entomology to Pokemon? Do scientists ever make bugs fight?

Written by Joe Ballenger The release of Pokemon Go has been great for us entomologists, because we have been able to get people to realize why we love our jobs so much. The creator of Pokemon, Satoshi Tajiri, actually got … Continue reading

Posted in Behavior, Culture, Developmental Biology, Ecology, Insect Rearing, Physiology | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

What are carpet beetles doing on my cilantro?

Written by Joe Ballenger Dear Entomologist, Could you please help with a bug question. I found many small bugs on my cilantro flowers which look like carpet beetles. Should I be worried about them in my vegetable garden and or … Continue reading

Posted in Behavior, Ecology, Pest Management, Physiology, Pollination | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

If I am allergic to honeybees, am I also allergic to other bees?

Post written by Joe Ballenger     Does the allergy to honeybee stings carry over to other bees like the bumblebees and carpenter bees? Allergies are very complicated, but they also effect a lot of people. So this is a topic … Continue reading

Posted in Chemistry, Physiology | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Microcephaly, Zika, correlation, and causation: the science behind CDC’s confirmation of Zika and microcephaly

Written by Joe Ballenger I’m still following the Zika/Microcephaly literature. I’m not writing about every paper which comes out, but I am writing about the ones I feel are pretty important. The most recent ‘big paper’ came out in the … Continue reading

Posted in News, Pest Management, Physiology, Research | Leave a comment

Why do some insects pee sugar?

So let’s unpack this one, because insect pee (watery poop, actually) is really interesting in every way. Here’s a video of what Anastasia was talking about: If you want to see more insects doing this, look for Insect Honeydew on … Continue reading

Posted in Physiology | Tagged , | 3 Comments

Questions about head lice.

Written by Joe Ballenger We get a lot of questions about lice, and these are really important. On Biofortified, I wrote an article about head louse treatments that was relatively depressing. There are a lot of companies which market louse … Continue reading

Posted in Education, Pest Management, Physiology, Research | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments