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And Then There Were Nun: Trees That Could Be Endangered by a Nun Moth Invasion
This article is from Issue Invasive Species - Vol. 8 No. 1.
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Welcome to the Invasive Species edition
Note to Educators
Invasive Species Lesson Plan
Student Notes Page
Reflection Section Answer Guide
Education Standards CorrelationsMeet the scientists that contributed to this article:
"Science Topics" covered in this article:
"Environmental Topics" covered in this article:
Regions covered in this article:
"Thinking About Science Themes" covered in this article:
In today's world, we often think about our Nation's security. There are many different types of threats to our Nation, including biological threats from nonnative animal and plant species. In this research, the scientist studied a species of moth that has not yet been found in the United States. In Europe and Asia, this moth has done much damage to trees. The scientist wanted to know what tree species in the United States would be damaged if the moth were to come into the country. To do her study, the scientist brought the moth eggs to the United States. When she did her experiments, she had to be certain the eggs, larvae, or moths did not escape into the natural environment. When scientists work with dangerous organisms, they must use extreme care to make sure their experiments are totally secure.
Specific "Thinking About Science" Themes:"Thinking About Environmental Themes" covered in this article:
Over a period of hundreds or thousands of years, organisms adapt to survive in their environment. Often, similar species living in different areas have adapted from a common ancestor. They may share many characteristics, but because they have adapted to different environments, they may also have different characteristics. In this study, the scientist examined the preferred reproductive habitat of a certain type of moth. In Europe and Asia, this moth prefers to lay her eggs in particular tree species. When the eggs are laid and the larvae hatch, the larvae eat the leaves as they grow and develop. Eating the leaves damages the tree and may even kill it. The scientist wanted to know which tree species in the United States would be the preferred reproductive habitat for this moth, if it were to invade.
Specific "Thinking About the Environment" Themes:NSE Standards covered in this article: