Every calendar quarter we give away 30 scientist bobble heads to subscribers to The Barker who correctly answer a riddle or logic problem. If you know the answer to the Q2 challenge, click here for a chance to win a free Pillars of Science bobble head.
This time we join Dr. Orange in the midst of a conversation with the undergraduate students in her fly genetics lab. She is trying to hammer home some simple concepts regarding fly genetics, and decides that a little mathematics problem is the best way to get their neurons firing. Dr. Orange says "Class, here is a lab culture vial containing seventeen flies with one of four non-lethal eye phenotypes: white eyes, orange eyes, red eyes, and eyeless" as she shows them the vial. "Whoever can count the number of flies with wild-type red eyes will earn extra credit today." She proceeds to allow each student thirty seconds to try and count the wild-type flies. Soon after they start, the students complain it is just too hard to count the peppy flies. She then proffers up the final bits of information necessary to solve the problem, "Oh, and by the way, flies with red eyes are the most abundant. Neither of the four phenotypes have the same number in the vial. There are at least two of each color. And if I randomly pick enough flies, and only just enough flies, from the culture to ensure that I have at least two of any one eye type and one of any second phenotype, I must pick 11 flies." Can you answer Dr. Orange's question about the number of wild-type red eyes correctly and earn a bobble head?