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Latest Aposematism 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...

European Paper Wasp Never Cries Wolf
2012-08-20 07:13:34

European paper wasps (Polistes dominula) advertise the size of their poison glands to potential predators, finds a new study published in BioMed Central's open access journal Frontiers in Zoology. The brighter the color, the larger the poison gland. Aposematism is used by many different animals to warn potential predators that they are poisonous. Usually this takes the form of distinctive coloration or patterns which predators quickly learn to avoid. Paper wasps have conspicuous yellow and...

Redder Ladybirds Are More Deadly
2012-02-08 04:51:39

A ladybird's color indicates how well-fed and how toxic it is, according to an international team of scientists. Research led by the Universities of Exeter and Liverpool directly shows that differences between animals' warning signals reveal how poisonous individuals are to predators. Published February 7, 2012 in the journal Functional Ecology, the research shows that redder ladybirds are more poisonous than their paler peers. The study reveals that this variation is directly linked to...

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...

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2011-08-15 07:09:20

The mystery of how a butterfly has changed its wing patterns to mimic neighboring species and avoid being eaten by birds has been solved by a team of European scientists. The study was published August 14, 2011 in the journal Nature. The greatest evolutionary thinkers, including Wallace, Bates and Darwin, have all wondered how butterflies that taste bad to birds have evolved the same patterns of warning coloration. Now for the first time, researchers led by the CNRS (Mus©um National...

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2010-04-14 06:40:00

The hair-like structures used by birch caterpillars to communicate warnings may have evolved from walking, researchers from Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada have discovered. The research team, led by Dr. Jayne Yack from the university, published their findings in the Nature Communications journal. Their report was entitled "The evolutionary origins of ritualized acoustic signals in caterpillars" and was published in the April 12 issue. In the abstract accompanying their report, the...

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2010-02-07 11:10:00

How two butterfly species have evolved exactly the same striking wing color and pattern has intrigued biologists since Darwin's day. Now, scientists at Cambridge have found "hotspots" in the butterflies' genes that they believe will explain one of the most extraordinary examples of mimicry in the natural world. Heliconius, or passion-vine butterflies, live in the Americas "“ from the southern United States to southern South America. Although they cannot interbreed, H. melpomene and H....


Latest Aposematism Reference Libraries

Granular Poison Frog, Oophaga Granulifera
2013-06-25 13:49:03

The Granular Poison Frog (Oophaga granulifera) is a species of frog belonging to the family Dendrobatidae, found in Costa Rica and Panama. Its natural habitats are tropical and subtropical, moist, lowland forests, but it's threatened by habitat loss. This frog has been switched from Dendrobates granuliferus to Oophaga granulifera. The frog is an aposematic animal, and it utilizes poison only for the purpose of self defense from predators. It's clearly visible red color is designed as a...

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Word of the Day
grass-comber
  • A landsman who is making his first voyage at sea; a novice who enters naval service from rural life.
According to the OED, a grass-comber is also 'a sailor's term for one who has been a farm-labourer.'