Note: These Challenge Questions coincide with the Spring 2001 Reports
From: Sue-Anne Solem (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Wed Apr 18 2001 - 12:53:05 EDT
Next message: Sue-Anne Solem: "Challenge Question #19"
Several students from Ms. Sheer's fourth grade class at Glenwood School,
Chapel Hill, North Carolina, pondered this question long and hard and came
up with some possibilities:
The tape recorder can pick up very faint noises so the person starts the
drill at low speed. The tape recorder catches the noises and puts the
noise near the robin. It might hear the little noises and go down and
look at the tape recorder, thinking it is a worm.
Mercaptoacetic acid smells really really really bad, so so the worms are
attracted to the smell and robins will smell the scent and go down to
where he smelled the smell and dig.
Use dead earthworms and live earthworms to see what robins will go to.
If they go to the live ones, they are probably using their sense of vision
because bits of dead earthworms don't look like live ones.
Maybe worms smell like mercaptoacetic acid, and robins would smell it and
look for worms there.
If you put the drill on low speed and record it and play it by the nest,
robins might think it was an earthworm digging and would fly to the sound.
The scientist might put a living earthworm close to a robin, and if it
comes down to get it, you will know that the robin is either using its
sense of smell or its vision. The scientist might take another earthworm,
cover it with one of the smelly substances and then put it at the same
distance from the bird. If it comes down, it was probably using its
vision. If it doesn't, it was using its sense of smell.
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