Raising Giant Insects to unravel Ancient Oxygen

November 2nd, 2010 - 7:47 pm ICT by Aishwarya Bhatt  

Denver, Nov 2 (THAINDIAN NEWS) A new study has revealed that some ancient insects grew bigger due to increased levels of atmospheric oxygen. The research found in particular that dragonflies grow bigger with higher level of oxygen. The scientists however revealed that it was not all organisms that grew bigger with increased levels of oxygen.

The way different organisms behave with different levels of atmospheric oxygen baffles scientists who now seek to find out why that is the case. Scientists believe that different insects behave differently towards different levels of oxygen in the atmosphere because of the way their individual hollow tracheal tubes are designed. The tubes are used for breathing in the insects.

The researchers studied different insects growing in different oxygen concentration levels. The insects studied were cockroaches, dragonflies, grasshoppers, meal worms, beetles and some other insects. The results of the research which was presented yesterday at the annual Geological Society of America meeting in Denver, USA revealed that the dragonflies grew faster and bigger in the increased oxygen environment while the cockroaches’ growth reduced in increased oxygen level. The other insects however showed decreased growth in decreased oxygen level but their growth was mixed when the oxygen levels were increased.

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