Poster or Presentation Title

Wolbacia Bacteria and the Endangered Tiger Beetle

Location

Hall Memorial Ballroom

Access Type

Open Access

Presentation Type

Poster Presentation

Start Date

4-4-2018 12:00 PM

Department

Biological Science

Abstract

Tiger beetles are a common and widespread group of insects that live in habitats ranging from deserts to beaches in patches of cleared land. Tiger Beetle species are rare and endangered, when once they were abundant. Their recent decrease in numbers is leading scientist to try new methods in finding the answer as to why there is such a rapid decline in numbers as well as understand why there is extreme variation in their physical appearance from one population to the next. The purpose of this experiment is to identify the presence of Wolbachia pipentis bacteria, as a possible mechanism for rapid speciation in the rare Tiger Beetle species. The Tiger Beetles are collected from all over the United States and parts of Canada such as, Nevada, Utah, Virginia and New Mexico, by our collaborator from Randolph Macon College who specializes in insect identification. We have extracted DNA and amplified it using PCR primers specific to the Wolbachia bacteria. The amplified DNA is separated in a gel, which allows us to determine whether a particular insect contains Wolbachia DNA which means the insect is infected with the Wolbachia bacteria. If the insect is positive for Wolbachia, we test more of the insects collected from that region to ascertain if the whole population is possibly infected by the bacteria. If they are and it is in a area of few beetles it could be a big step in understanding why the Tiger Beetle populations are endangered.

Faculty Mentor

Dr. Erin Friedman

Rights Statement

The right to download or print any portion of this material is granted by the copyright owner only for personal or educational use. The author/creator retains all proprietary rights, including copyright ownership. Any editing, other reproduction or other use of this material by any means requires the express written permission of the copyright owner. Except as provided above, or for any other use that is allowed by fair use (Title 17, §107 U.S.C.), you may not reproduce, republish, post, transmit or distribute any material from this web site in any physical or digital form without the permission of the copyright owner of the material.

This document is currently not available here.

Share

COinS
 
Apr 4th, 12:00 PM

Wolbacia Bacteria and the Endangered Tiger Beetle

Hall Memorial Ballroom

Tiger beetles are a common and widespread group of insects that live in habitats ranging from deserts to beaches in patches of cleared land. Tiger Beetle species are rare and endangered, when once they were abundant. Their recent decrease in numbers is leading scientist to try new methods in finding the answer as to why there is such a rapid decline in numbers as well as understand why there is extreme variation in their physical appearance from one population to the next. The purpose of this experiment is to identify the presence of Wolbachia pipentis bacteria, as a possible mechanism for rapid speciation in the rare Tiger Beetle species. The Tiger Beetles are collected from all over the United States and parts of Canada such as, Nevada, Utah, Virginia and New Mexico, by our collaborator from Randolph Macon College who specializes in insect identification. We have extracted DNA and amplified it using PCR primers specific to the Wolbachia bacteria. The amplified DNA is separated in a gel, which allows us to determine whether a particular insect contains Wolbachia DNA which means the insect is infected with the Wolbachia bacteria. If the insect is positive for Wolbachia, we test more of the insects collected from that region to ascertain if the whole population is possibly infected by the bacteria. If they are and it is in a area of few beetles it could be a big step in understanding why the Tiger Beetle populations are endangered.