Tuesday, December 12, 2006

the National Biological Information Infrastructure

The National Biological Information Infrastucture (NBII) bills itself as a "broad, collaborative program to provide increased access to data and information on the nation's biological resources." To that end, the NBII website offers links to information on current issues in biology (biodiversity, pollinator decline, West Nile virus, etc.), museums and image collections, geographically-specific biology/ecology information, and conference listings, data sources, and external tools.

The site also features a well-stocked Teacher Resources center, with extensive listings of classroom projects for K-12 students, arranged by topic and grade level. You'll find a wide range of real-life and online activities here, from Net Frog -- an online interactive no-animals-harmed dissection activity -- to epidemic simulations to roach anatomy. (Oh, and if you enjoyed the roach anatomy page, you might also want to try the "Can Cockroaches Learn" lab, which involves running twelve live roaches through several different mazes.)

Fun fact of the day: people who are allergic to shellfish are usually allergic to cockroaches, too. So if lobster tail sends you int anaphylactic shock, it's probably best not to try eating roaches, either. Just in case you were tempted.

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