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Attractants and Repellants

Summary

Areas of Science
Difficulty
 
Time Required
Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites
None
Material Availability
Readily available
Cost
Very Low (under $20)
Safety
No issues
Credits
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Abstract

Animals respond to chemical cues in different ways. If an animal turns away from a chemical cue, then that chemical is a repellent. If an animal turns toward a chemical cue, then that chemical is an attractant. Attractants and repellents can be airborne chemicals, chemicals found in food, or chemicals that diffuse through water. One example of an airborne chemical is a pheromone, a chemical signal that is released by one individual to attract another. Moths release pheromones to attract mates, Japanese beetles release pheromones to attract more beetles, and ants release pheromones along an ant trail. Put a beetle in a cup with holes poked in it to see if it can attract more beetles. Wipe through a trail of ants with a baby wipe to see if you can erase the pheromone and see how long it takes the ants to recover the trail. Place some rotting fruit out to see if it will attract some fruit flies. Will artificial scented oils attract or repel insect? Try oils like cinnamon, citronella, orange oil, rose oil and almond oil. Which oils act as attractants and which as repellents? (Dashefsky, 1995, 2-3, 7-9)

Bibliography

Dashefsky, H.S. 1995. Zoology: 49 Science Fair Projects. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill, Inc.
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MLA Style

Science Buddies Staff. "Attractants and Repellants." Science Buddies, 20 Nov. 2020, https://www.sciencebuddies.org/science-fair-projects/project-ideas/Zoo_p042/zoology/attractants-and-repellants. Accessed 17 May 2022.

APA Style

Science Buddies Staff. (2020, November 20). Attractants and Repellants. Retrieved from https://www.sciencebuddies.org/science-fair-projects/project-ideas/Zoo_p042/zoology/attractants-and-repellants


Last edit date: 2020-11-20
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