Re: 31'st update on fly longevity experiments

From: Michael S. Lorrey (
Date: Tue Oct 10 2000 - 11:16:23 MDT

Doug Skrecky wrote:
> One interesting observation was that the first census a couple of hours
> after the first 90 minute period of freezer storage yielded very poor survival,
> as evidenced by detection of movement. I did not expect the great increase
> in survival, when a second census 3 days later was performed. Although I
> had expected all the flies to be dead by then, many flies particularly in the
> pynogenol 300 mg bottle had sprung miraculously back to life.
> Freezer Run #3 Percent Survival After
> supplement 0 90 (2'nd census) 180 minutes
> ___________________________________________________
> control 100 0 5 0
> pynogenol 300 mg 100 19 44 0
> pynogenol 600 mg 96 12 15 0

Doug, this is very important news for me (I have a long standing dissagreement
with a female friend over the issue of flies naturally undergoing 'cryonic
suspension'. She is a biochemistry grad student, and insists this is not
possible). Growing up here in northern new england, I know from personal
experience that flies frequently hybernate in a frozen state in the cracks of
logs and elsewhere. I've seen this from bringing into my parents house pieces of
wood for their wood stove that were frozen solid in ambient temperatures of -10
to -30 degrees F (not counting wind chill), and stacking them next to the stove
to warm up and unfreeze. Doing so causes flies hybernating in the cracks to come
back to life, and obviously annoy us by buzzing around once they recover. I have
also witnessed a fly, frozen in the crack of a stup of a tree, come back to life
as the sun rose and began to warm it above the freezing point. I do not know
what sort of flies you are using, but the ones I refer too seem to be some sort
of wild house fly that is common to these parts, but I am no entomologist.

Mike Lorrey

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