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Title: Planning and designing

Aim: To design and carry out an investigation in which a choice chamber is used to investigate
the responses of small invertebrates to light, moisture, and heat.

Hypothesis: when wood lice or earthworms are paced in a choice chamber they would crawl or
move to the cool, dark and moist area of the chamber to settling in the environment or area that
they feel comfortable in.


 A choice chamber
 Gauze
 Anhydrous calcium chloride
 Earthworms
 Soil


1. Cut some cardboard out to make four separate areas in a clear choice
2. The choice chamber is separated into four areas .A, B, C, and D. soil is placed inside.
3. In area, A place anhydrous calcium chloride below the gauze and covered with a lid.
4. In area B, place anhydrous calcium chloride below the gauze and left with a cover.
5. In area C make the soil moist by adding water below the gauze and left open
6. In area, D make the soil moist by adding water below the gauze and cover with a lid.
7. Two earthworms are placed inside each area.

Expected Results:

It was expected that the earthworms would go to the dark and moist. The reason being
earthworms breathe through their skin so their need a moist environment so that diffusion can
take place so they can get oxygen. Additionally the area had to be dark so earthworm can hide
from predators.


It was observed that the earthworms move to areas C and D because it is moist and dark.
Because earthworms breathe through their skin, it must be kept moist in order to work. Dry skin
stops the diffusion process, effectively preventing earthworms from getting oxygen. Additionally
Earthworms do not have eyes as we do. Instead, they can sense light through their skin. These
natural light sensors let the earthworms know when they are getting too close to a bright light,
such as the sun. Earthworms try to stay out of sunlight because the heat from the sun dries out
their skin.


Areas Number of earthworms in each area

A 3
B 0
C 0
D 5
Interpretation of results:

Stimulus is a change in the environment that an organism reacts or responds to .it could be light
temperature, a texture, a chemical in the air or moisture. Stimulus may be internal or external .A
response is the change in the organism brought about by the Stimulus. The response to stimulus
is important for the survivalof organisms. Examples of responses in plants are phototropism,
which is the plant’s respond to light during growth, hydrotropism that is a plants response to
water and geotropism, which is a plants response to gravity. Examples of response in animals
are muscle movements; the production of muscle movements like speaking, glands secreting,
like salivation and perspiration. Irritability, which is one of the main characteristic of life, is the
ability of living organisms to respond to changes in their internal environment and the world
around them. Irritability increases the chances of survival for organisms. Earthworms prefer
moist and dark areas because earthworms breathe through their skin. If an earthworm skin gets
dry it prevents diffusion from taking place, preventing it from getting oxygen .additionally
earthworms do not have eyes, instead they sense light through their skin. They try to stay away
from sunlight because the heat from the sun dries out their skin. Since areas A and D are moist
and dark the earth would prefer to go their instead of areas C and B which anhydrous calcium
chloride was to keep it dry. The reason for this being the earthworms need moist areas to survive
and dark areas to hide from predators. The movement of earthworms in response to external
stimulus such as the presence of a particular chemical (chemotaxis), changes in light intensity
(phototaxis). External stimulus used in this experiment was light intensity and the moisture in
soil. Areas A and D was kept moist by adding water and dark by using a plastic bag to cover the
choice chamber. Areas C and D were kept dry by adding anhydrous calcium chloride , which is a
drying agent and left open to allow sunlight to pass through . The fine mesh gauze in this
experiment was used to support and prevent the earthworms from being harmed by the drying
agent in areas A and D or drowning in water in areas C and D

A taxis or taxic response is a movement of a cell or an invertebrate in response to an external

stimulus. Taxes can be positive or negative, but organisms can also move in any direction in
response to stimulus. Animals respond to changes in their environment in order to use less
energy and keep their conditions as close to optimum as possible. Taxic responses allow
vertebrates to avoid danger and to avoid situations that are too hot, cold, dry, or wet. As suitable
conditions are normally necessary for reproduction, the main benefit of responding adequately to
stimuli is the survival of the species.


It can be concluded that organism respond to stimulus. Earthworms prefer moist and dark area;
taxis responses allow the earthworm to avoid danger and to avoid situations that are too hot or
dry. Earthworms tend to stay away from dry and hot areas because they need a moist and dark
environment to survive. The reason being to avoid predators and keeping their skin moist, which
is needed to enable them to breathe. Stimulus can be either internal or external. Examples of
external stimulus are light, moisture in soil and temperature. A taxic response is a movement of a
cell or invertebrate in response to external stimulus. taxes can either be positive or negative .an
example of positive taxic response are bacteria that move towards oxygen (positive aerotaxis)
and an example of negative taxic response is insects that move away from insect repellent
(negative chemotaxis) .taxic response increases the chances of survival in organisms.


Animals have to react to conditions in their environments in order to function effectively and to
survive. Any detectable change in the environment is called stimulus. As humans ,we detect and
respond to stimulus in order to survive for example if you leave a dark room an d go outside
were it is sunny , your pupils constrict to protect your eye from taking in too much light and
being damaged . Your body reacts to stimulus (light) to protect you. In the human body, there are
numerous receptors, which are neurons that are able to sense change. Examples of receptors in
the human body are photoreceptors in the eyes that detect changes in light, Thermorecptors that
detect changes in heat and baroreceptors that detect changes in pressure.

Possible errors that was likely to happen during the experiment.

-Source of error:

 Environmental Factors: light could have been entering the choice chamber. The
temperature could have been too hot for the earthworms.
 Experimenter : the procedure might not have been followed properly

- Precaution:

 It was ensured that the sections of the choice chambers were not mixed
 The procedure was followed carefully
 It was ensured that the earthworms were alive.