Not sure what to do with the cockroaches skittering across your kitchen counter? The Rockefeller University’s Program for the Human Environment will take one or two of them off your hands in the name of science. Researchers are using DNA barcoding to answer a number of questions about the American cockroach (Periplaneta americana), also known as the palmetto bug or waterbug.
Genetic diversity is a window into evolution and patterns of migration. American cockroaches originated in Africa and hitchhiked around the world on commercial goods. The National Cockroach Project asks:
Do American cockroaches differ genetically between cities?
Do U.S. genetic types match those in other parts of the world?
Are there genetic types that represent undiscovered look-alike species?
- PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Mark Stoeckle, Senior Research Associate
- SCIENTIST AFFILIATION: The Rockefeller University
- DATES: Ongoing
- PROJECT TYPE: Fieldwork
- COST: Free
- GRADE LEVEL: High/Secondary School
- TIME COMMITMENT: Variable
HOW TO JOIN:
Contact Mark Stoeckle, firstname.lastname@example.org, at The Rockefeller University