Can a bug survive being frozen?
Insects are unlike mammals and birds because they must generate their own heat (called ectotherms). Insects die when they are exposed to temperatures below the melting point of their body fluids. If they want to survive our cold Iowa winters, they must avoid freezing or tolerate freezing.
Perhaps the most extreme adaptation of all New Zealand's bizarre invertebrate fauna is that of the mountain stone weta. A remarkable insect with the ability to survive being seemingly frozen solid. It can cope with repeated cycles of freeze and thaw and freeze and thaw and come out alive and kicking.
Bdelloid rotifers are microscopic animals that can survive through freezing, drying, starvation and low oxygen conditions. Previously scientists thought they could survive frozen for up to 10 years.
Freezing insects is one of several options available to entomologists seeking to preserve them for detailed specimen preservation. Freezing insects has the added benefit that you don't need to use chemicals, although it's not a suitable killing method for every type of insect.
The literature generally suggests that spiders are not freeze tolerant. In other words, their tissues cannot survive the process of freezing, and ice will cause irreparable damage.
But, if you take a jar of cockroaches from room temperature and put it into a sub-zero freezer, the insects will be dead within a half hour.
Examples of freeze tolerant insects include: the woolly bear, Pyrrharctia isabella; the flightless midge, Belgica antarctica; the alpine tree weta, Hemideina maori; and the alpine cockroach, Celatoblatta quinquemaculata.
Bdelloid rotifers, are known for their ability to survive extremely low temperatures, as it has been seen they could survive six to 10 years in temperatures as low as -4 degrees Fahrenheit. Samples of the animal were taken from frozen soil extracted from permafrost in northeastern Siberia.
"One option is that they don't like being chilled very much. You can certainly put them into your freezer and they're not going to survive for very long," he says.
Like turtles and frogs, snakes are ectotherms. This means that their body temperatures depend on the temperature of their environment. This causes a problem during winter when freezing temperatures will kill snakes. To survive the frigid weather, snakes hide away in dens called hibernacula.
Can fish survive being frozen alive?
Can fish and other aquatic creatures really survive in a state of suspended animation until spring? The surprising answer is yes, sometimes. It is true that some fish can spend the winter frozen in ice and come out swimming once the ice melts.
Most insects would die if their temperature gets much below freezing but many are cold adapted and they or their eggs regularly survive cold winter freezes.
As a test, Zall resawed a small, infested board in half so that he could see a couple of beetles. Then he taped the piece back together and put it with the rest of the wood in the freezer. When he picked up the wood, he checked the test piece and, sure enough, the beetles had been killed.
They observed some bugs surviving short-term exposures to temperatures as low as minus 13 F (minus 25 C). However, temperatures below 3.2 F (minus 16 C) could destroy all life stages of the insect after 3.5 days, and temperatures below minus 4 F (minus 20 C) destroy them in just 48 hours, the team reported.
Because the common fruit fly is one of the bugs that cannot survive freezing and the little creature just so happens to share much of the same genetic makeup as humans, therefore finding a way to freeze them for research purposes is a top priority for geneticists the world over.
The next day, pour enough rubbing alcohol in the container to submerge the frozen spider to insure that it will not recover from being frozen. The now dead spider and alcohol can then be poured into the toilet and flushed away. So if you have to kill the spider, do it kindly and gently—in the freezer.
No, they drown. Spiders which you find in the bath have fallen in, not, as widely assumed, emerged from the plug-hole, as they cannot get past the U-bend (they drown).
Spiders, like insects, have an open circulatory system. A blood, called hemolymph bathes the organs and is sloshed around by a tube-like heart.
You can spray them with soapy water and this will suffocate them. The focus here is to create a thin film of soap around the roach's body and that will suffocate him. You can easily use a bottle with a spray nozzle, combine some water with soap and then that's it.
Biting isn't a natural attack or as a defense mechanism for roaches, as it is for other insects. Their mouthparts aren't even strong enough to pierce through human skin. At most, cockroaches might seem like they're biting a person when in fact they're just trying to pick at food remnants or dead skin.
Can mosquitoes survive a freeze?
Mosquitoes function best at 80 degrees F, become lethargic at 60 degrees F, and cannot function below 50 degrees F.
Many people assume that freezing temperatures will control these insects - not always so. Clothes moths have survived for long periods in unheated attics and barns in old furniture, clothing and blankets exposed to below freezing temperatures.
When the weather turns cold, the adult grasshoppers die. But the eggs can survive winter to hatch into baby grasshoppers when the weather warms in spring.
Snakes do not come back to life after freezing. Even if a snake survives after being exposed to extremely cold temperatures, most of its systems (brain, heart, lung, liver, kidney, etc.) have already shut down. Thus, the snake could not even live for 24 hours after being thawed.
New cloning technology opened the door for scientists to resurrect mice using frozen cells that had been kept in a deep freeze for the past 16 years. The new approach, once thought impossible, may lead to new projects that give birth to woolly mammoths or other species that are extinct.