Friday, January 14, 2011

The Anatomy of the Cockroach

I received a rather unusual email today from Steve Clark which read, in part:
"I wanted to notify you about an educational resource developed by my company Orkin Pest Control. It is a fully interactive virtual cockroach designed to be an instructional tool about insect anatomy."
I visited the website and found it to be rather detailed, including micrographs of every imaginable slice of cockroach. I have to say, it was more than I ever wanted to know about cockroach innards!

And it never before occurred to me that the cockroach might make a useful tool for the study of insects because, as the Orkin Virtual Roach page points out, the cockroach is both a familiar insect and readily available. Think of how cheaply students could acquire supplies for lab class. Folks might even be willing to pay students to collect their roaches. Now that's a win-win solution!

I like the idea of taking this "useless" pest and finding a purpose for it. Good luck, Orkin! I hope that your virtual cockroach has a long and happy life.

Photo credit: Anil Jadhav, via flickr // CC BY 2.0

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