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How does Temperature affect the Rate of Respiration in Wax Worms?

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Biology AS Coursework How does Temperature affect the Rate of Respiration in Wax Worms? P I A E spg Total Mark = Name: Daniel Comey Candidate Number: ? Centre Number: ? Aim The aim of this investigation is to determine what affect temperature has on the rate of respiration of a simple organism. The simple invertebrate organisms I will be using in this investigation are wax worms. Theory To convey all the background research I will need in order to make a valid hypothesis I will split my theory section into the following sub-headings: * Background information on wax worms * Respiration in invertebrates * How temperature affects respiration * The Quotient 10 law Background information on wax worms Wax worms (Galleria Mellonella), in their natural environment, are very destructive pests of honeycombs. They are now bred and used for fish bait and to feed exotic pets, for example reptiles. The greater wax moth (an adult life stage of a wax worm) will lay their tiny white eggs near a beehive. There they will develop into wax worms (larvae stage) and tunnel their way though weak honey beehives. There they will feed on honey, beeswax and honeycomb leaving a mass of debris, silken threads and damaged honeycomb frames. ...read more.


I will carry out the experiment by placing three wax worms in a boiling tube that is attached to a respirometer and placing the boiling tube into the water bath at the temperature that I am testing. Then I can repeat this process over different temperatures to test all the temperatures that I am interested in testing the rate of respiration for. I will also repeat the whole process a second time to get an average for my results. For my results to be significant in any form I must make this a fair test. To make a test fair all the variables must be kept constant apart from the variable that is being investigated. To make this a fair test I will have a control boiling tube hooked up to a respirometer to make sure that the change in the respirometer is due to the wax worms and nothing else. Time is also a varying factor so I will time the boiling tubes, five minutes should be a sufficient amount of time to notice a change in oxygen levels. I have already decided to use a time limit of five minutes per temperature. The temperatures that I will test the rate of respiration for will be 10�, 20�, 30�, 40�. ...read more.


I am aware that if I had one 'off' experiment my results could be completely different from what they are supposed to be. This is why I carried out the experiment twice, to get an average so my results were more accurate and so that the results could not have been the result of an 'off' experiment. My two sets of data are very similar and it is very unlikely that I had two 'off' experiments. The majority of the equipment that I used was accurate. One exception was the water bath. I chose to use a beaker and thermometer water bath for convenience reasons; if I had used a thermostatically controlled water bath the temperature would have been more constant and my results may have been more accurate. There were some bubbles present in the manometer fluid when I carried out the experiment, this may have made my results slightly inaccurate. Also there are probably more sophisticated respirometers that I could have used (a digital one, for example), to get more accurate results, however I do not think this would make such a significant difference. To improve this investigation I could use the equipment above, maybe different time (longer times), although different temperatures would not be a good idea as the wax worms looked uncomfortable at 40�C. Daniel Comey Biology Coursework ...read more.

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