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Latest Andrei Sourakov Stories

Butterfly Evolution Can Also Be Driven By Spiders
2013-03-13 05:09:24

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Butterflies are vibrant and colorful insects, with colorations designed to deflect predators. A new study from the University of Florida reveals that some of these predator driven defenses may be caused by enemies one-tenth the size of the butterfly. Since Darwin sailed on the Beagle over 150 years ago, scientists have theorized that the main influence on the evolution of coloration in butterflies came from large predators such as...

2012-04-30 19:50:19

University of Florida lepidopterist Andrei Sourakov has spent his life´s work studying moths and butterflies. But it was his teenage daughter, Alexandra, who led research on how color impacts butterflies´ feeding patterns. The research shows different species exhibit unique foraging behaviors, and the study may be used to build more effective, species-specific synthetic lures for understanding pollinators, insects on which humans depend for sustaining many crops. In a study...

Caterpillars Mimic One Another For Survival
2011-12-17 04:53:44

A new study in the current issue of The Annals of the Entomological Society of America helps scientists better understand how organisms depend upon one another In the world of insects, high risk of attack has led to the development of camouflage as a means for survival, especially in the larval stage. One caterpillar may look like a stick, while another disguises itself as bird droppings. Though crypsis may have its advantages, University of Florida researchers uncovered some of the most...

sciencepress-082511-002
2011-08-25 10:42:33

  In one of the first taxonomic revisions of Neotropical butterflies that utilizes 'DNA barcoding', Andrei Sourakov (University of Florida, Florida Museum of Natural History) and Evgeny Zakharov (University of Guelph, Canadian Centre for DNA Barcoding at the Biodiversity Institute of Ontario) uncovered a spectacular degree of evolutionary divergence within the satyrine butterfly genus Calisto. The study was published in the open-access journal Comparative Cytogenetics. The...