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Bug Web: Poisonous Tree Septa-Insect

I've got that geometry bug!

A Day In The Life of My Geometry Bug

My three dimensional imaginary insect is named the Poisonous Tree Septa-Insect. A typical day in the life of my imaginary bug would be quite interesting. It would awake in the morning in its grass bed on a high branch in a tree. Then, it would go searching for food. The septa-insect would most likely eat some bark or some leaves near its bed. After eating, my insect would leave it's tree and go down to the ground. While there, the septa-insect may go searching for grasses for its bed. In case it encountered any predators, it would use one of its many defense mechanisms. For example, the two back points of the abdomen are used to inject poison. Don't worry, the poison is too weak to harm humans. Also, it has spots on its wings that look like eyes. The septa-insect's wings could also provide it with an escape. Not to mention, it's strong legs could give it quite a push off. After its time on the ground, it would most likely fly to a flower field and pollinate some flowers there. Then, back in its tree home it would sleep for a few hours. When it awakes again for the second time, the septa-insect would eat again. The meal would probably include bark or leaves again. At a certain point in its life, the insect would need to reproduce. During mating time, the males try to impress the females. After the insects all have mates and reproduce, their litters are about 20 to 25. The reason the litter is so large is because many of the young babies are killed right after birth. The particular geometry directly influences the everyday life of the septa-insect.

Since my bug can fly and it has such strong legs for jumping high in the air, it usually dwells high in trees. It lives only in deciduous trees such as Maples, Birches, or Gingkos. Being a relatively small insect, it consumes the bark and the leaves of the tree it lives in. However, it also pollinates flowers as a source of food. When it is on the ground it will also eat grasses and other small vegetation growing on the ground. However it doesn't eat other insects because its mouth parts are not strong or sharp enough to chew bug flesh. It's mouth parts are short and strong, somewhat like teeth to grind leaves, grasses, and bark. It walks on its long legs, rather than crawling on shorter legs like other insects do. Its wings are attached to the middle of the thorax, and it has two pairs of them. The wings are broad and light, allowing the septa-insect to glide in the air after it has taken flight. Where the septa-insect lives and what it eats are the two main factors that make it such an interesting bug.

I made each set of wings a different geometric shape. The larger set of wings on the top are septagons. I made them by drawing a four sided diamond, and putting two rectangles on the two opposite sides of the diamond. Once I had cut two of these shapes out of thin cardboard, I glued paper on top of them. I also glued two red circles on each large wing for a defense mechanism. This way, other predators may see these two spots and think that they are eyes of a larger predator. This is called mimicry. The smaller pair of wings underneath are decagons, or ten-sided polygons. I made then by first creating a trapezoid. Then, I drew a hexagon and attatched it to the base of the trapezoid. Once again, I cut two of those out of cardboard and glued constuction paper to them. I then used white pipe cleaners to attatch the wings to the thorax. I chose to use a white Styrofoam ball so it would be easy to attach the wings. I also glued colorful beads in a band around the thorax, because some poisonous insects are colorful to alert their predators of their poison.

For the other body sections of my insect I used various materials with different ideas. First of all, the head is made out of rubber, and is a three dimensional parabola shape. For the eyes, I used multi-sided yellow beads to represent the compound eyes. Some other insects, such as flies also have this type of eye structure to see many different images at once. I used a Styrofoam ball for the thorax, and pipe cleaners for the abdomen. To create the abdomen, I took pipe cleaners and made a polyhedron. I first started off with a pentagon, and then added other pentagons in various places onto the first one. For the six legs, I used a wooden stick and made three major leg parts, the femur (green), the tibia, (blue) and the tarsus (red). The femur is the stronger of the two, because it helps the insect to push off.

The septa-insect is very important to its ecosystem. Like many other insects, it pollinates flowers. It has developed a special mouthpiece to do this. The mouthpiece is a long, thin, one with a little hook on the end. The pollination is very important to the flower species because it helps them reproduce and spread their seeds. Not to mention, it provides another food source for the insect. In conclusion, the Poisonous Tree Septa-insect is a complex bodied, well adapted, interesting bug that would be quite interesting if it actually existed.



1.) The World Book Encyclopedia, World Book Inc. Copyright 1998. Pgs. 278-301

2.) New Standard Encyclopedia, Standard Educational Corporation. Pgs. 336-338 and Pg. 211

3.) Websites used:

a) http://mathleague.com/help/geometry/polygons.html

b) http://coolmath.com/interior.html

c) http://bhs-ms.org/geometry/bugs/geobugs.html

d) http://gnv.ifas.ufl.edu/~tjw/recbk.html

e) http://insect-world.com/

f) http://biology.st-and.ac.uk/sites/jumping/


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