Waters Lab

The new research team, 2021-2022

Ants, flies, summer research, SICB conference, and new respirometry setups!

Photo of our lab space Our 2021 summer research took place in a temporary space in the new Science Complex while the renovation of Albertus Magnus Hall made our main lab inaccessible. The sunshine and huge space was appreciated and put to use!

Group photo We did a lot of collecting, including this trip to a park outside Boston with BU PhD student Zach Coto, who is collaborating with us on measuring the metabolic rates of ant brains.

Students looking for ants on campus One of the ants we studied was the invasive needle ant, which happens to be found outside one dorm on campus, mostly in and around the irrigation supply/access boxes.

Needle ant portrait Here’s a closeup of one of our campus needle ants, Brachyponera chinensis.

Diraliz and (toddler) Bobby looking at ants One of our part-time lab members, Bobby, inspecting our ant colonies with the help of Diraliz (PC ‘23).

Photos of students dissecting insect brains We spent a lot of time dissecting the brains out of flies and ants, to measure their oxygen consumption rates using an Agilent Seahorse metabolic phenotyping system.

Group photo in front of poster Presenting the first results from our summer’s research at the SURF conference at URI.

Photo of Princely looking at insects at the bioblitz In the Fall, we participated in the Rhode Island Natural History Survey’s Bioblitz in Cumberland, RI.

Multi channel respirometry system One of our major research drives has been adapting the Sable Systems MAVEn for doing thermophysiology, measuring the metabolic rates of ants and flies across a range of temperatures.

Using an aspirator with flies We’re using a mouth aspirator (“pooter”) to move flies from their vials into respirometry chambers to avoid the metabolic impacts of gas-based anesthesia.

looking for ants in arizona You really can’t take Dr. Waters anywhere. Here, they aren’t doing yoga, but they are looking at a huge colony of Camponotus ants found under a large rock beside a portable toilet in the desert near Payson, Arizona.

Two presenters fist bump in front of their poster at a scientific conference Kate and Princely, proud of one of our lab’s posters at the SICB meeting (Phoenix, AZ).

Group photo in Payson Arizona Arizona was pretty awesome, love doing research, growing, and exploring with this crew!