We are called the MANTIS group and we are working on the observation and documentation of an eco-bottle. Our ecobottle is comprised of four 2-liter bottles. We spent about 4 months preparing the bottle itself and making our observations. In November we took apart the ecobottles and began work on this website. Our ecobottle had 3 parts to it: Terrestrial, Aquatic, and Decomposition. Each part had a little something in it, but the terrestrial was the part with our praying mantis (a common green mantis) which lived for about two and a half weeks. We saw many changes throughout the weeks but nothing too dramatic.
- We got some empty bottles and cut them so they would all go together. We cut the bottom off of two of the bottles and the top of one so that they would fit together. Then we taped them together so it would be sealed and there would be three sections.
- We made three sections. In the bottom one, we put several rocks and a lot of sand, as well as water - that was the aquatic section. In the other two sections we put soil. In the middle one we put only soil - that was the decomposition section. In the top one we put some soil, about 5 leaves, a few sticks, two snails and a praying mantis. That was the terrestrial section.
- Then we taped all the bottles together. At first we taped it and it would leak near the aquatic section, but then we put more tape on so it would not leak.
- Every few days we would water the whole ecosystem.
- Then we stopped watering it and let it sit. For the few days we didn't water the ecobottle and then we took the temperature and the PH of the water.
Our ecobottle on September 23, 2005 © 2005
When I was told we were making an ecobottle I thought everything would die and nothing would last for more then a week. I wasn't too excited about it either. At first we thought we were going to put fish in the aquatic section but we were unable to get some. I was very surprised with the outcome of it all.
The praying mantis seems fine, and our bottle is fine. The sticks are still green, and hard, not rotten inside.
October 3, 2005
The bottle is leaking. The leaves are moldy. There is condensation in all three chambers.
It still is leaking. There are no changes and there will be no changes. Someone sabotaged our bottle by putting some weird leaves in there. We took them out so its ok.
October 6, 2005
Nothing has happened. But I think the mantis has died.
October 10, 2005
Still nothing has happened. The praying mantis is still alive, but it has no food. The water has changed into a yellow. It looks like human waste.
Soon after this our mantis died.
View Workbook1.xls graph of temperature through time (click to download and view)
We learned about the praying mantis and how it lives. And we learned that you can make a whole ecosystem out of soda bottles. By observing the ecobottle, we learned how the whole ecosystem works, and how one thing can affect everything in the ecosystem. One thing that surprised us is how long the praying mantis lived because it had no food. We thought it would die sooner, but it lived two times longer than we predicted.