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Fly Facility

Department of Genetics

 Laura Bond, Pallavi Panda, Simon Collier, Kadri Oras, Kathy Morley

On the 17th March 2018 the Department of Genetics hosted an event for the annual Cambridge Science Festival which this year had the theme "Making Sense Of The World”. A group of fly scientists set up a station for visitors to view different Drosophila phenotypes such as ebony or yellow body colour, red or white eyes and curly or straight wings. A variety of fly life stages were displayed as were several different Drosophila species. There was also a guessing game which invited visitors to match close-up pictures of Drosophila to the different parts of the fly's body.

Visitors to the fly station had a chance to get acquainted with how fruit flies make sense of the world by looking at flies under a microscope, trying on fly goggles to see (and look) like a fly and listening to the sounds fruit flies make in a closed cylinder. They could smell bottles containing various foods and and compare their preferences to the food choices shown by our flies.


Other stations in the Department of Genetics this year were the zebrafish embryogenesis corner, the crime scene investigation team (learning about the kinds of information forensic scientist can work with), strawberry DNA extraction centre and the scientific photo matching competition.

This year’s event had significantly more guests than previous years (possibly partly due to the cold weather outside) and visitors to the Department of Genetics seemed excitied to learn about the model organisms we use and the kind of science that is done here.

Text -Kadri Oras

Images - Pallavi Panda

March 2018


Contact Information

Tiny fly

E-mail contacts

Simon Collier (Fly Facility Manager):

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Department of Genetics,
University of Cambridge, Downing Street,
Cambridge CB2 3EH,
United Kingdom

Phone: +44 (0)1223 765124
Fax: +44 (0)1223 333992


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