Quantcast
Last updated on April 18, 2014 at 12:32 EDT

Latest Herbivore Stories

2009-07-13 17:13:32

Why do some plants defend themselves from insect attacks better than others? New evidence shows that the difference might be due to whether they're getting any plant love.In research published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, scientists from North Carolina State University and Duke University discovered that sexually produced evening primrose plants withstand attacks from plant-eaters like caterpillars better than plant relatives that reproduce by themselves.The findings...

2009-06-24 09:04:27

U.S. and Japanese scientists have discovered plants can communicate danger to their clones or genetically identical cuttings planted nearby. University of California-Davis Professor Richard Karban and Kaori Shiojiri of Kyoto University found sagebrush responds to cues of self and non-self without physical contact. Karban said the sagebrush communicated and cooperated with other branches of themselves to avoid being eaten by grasshoppers. The scientists said they suspect the plants warn their...

099273fdda3c62afcbd4c8db8e3d17291
2009-06-20 08:22:43

"To thine own self be true" may take on a new meaning"”not with people or animal behavior but with plant behavior. Plants engage in self-recognition and can communicate danger to their "clones" or genetically identical cuttings planted nearby, says professor Richard Karban of the Department of Entomology, University of California, Davis, in groundbreaking research published in the current edition of Ecology Letters. Karban and fellow scientist Kaori Shiojiri of the Center for Ecological...

2009-04-14 10:31:20

U.S. entomologists say a careful choice of nitrogen-fixing bacteria might provide soybean farmers protection against an invasion of soybean aphids. Pennsylvania State University researchers said soybeans are legumes -- plants that can have a symbiotic relationship with nitrogen-fixing bacteria called rhizobia and therefore do not need additional nitrogen fertilizer. Each type of legume -- peas, beans, lentils, alfalfa -- have their own rhizobia. Soybeans are from Asia and so there were...

38da673260edc75e206106474a0fce09
2009-03-01 09:02:53

Ever since insects developed a taste for vegetation, plants have faced the same dilemma: use limited resources to out-compete their neighbors for light to grow, or, invest directly in defense against hungry insects. Now, an international team of scientists at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies and the Institute of Investigaciones Fisiol³gicas y Ecol³gicas Vinculadas a la Agronomía (IFEVA) has discovered how plants weigh the tradeoffs and redirect their...

df51bf327341b52cbafe16c7f58ac45d1
2008-12-22 14:50:00

Scientists are discovering that bees can be good for plants in more ways than one. German researchers have discovered that the flapping of bees' wings scares off caterpillars, reducing leaf damage. Many wasp species lay their eggs in caterpillars, and so caterpillars have evolved to avoid them. The sounds of bees' and wasps' wings are similar. Researchers suggest this is an added bonus of having bees around, as well as the pollination they provide. The scientists wrote in the journal Current...

de7f86a249dda6413d73ce8945d28f521
2008-11-20 11:38:28

Plants that range northward because of climate change may be better at defending themselves against local enemies than native plants. So concludes a team of scientists including a University of Florida geneticist. The team's findings, reported in yesterday's online edition of Nature, suggest that certain plants could become invasive if they spread to places that were previously too cold for them. "This paper is the first to suggest that the mechanisms that aid invasive species when they move...

2008-09-30 03:00:00

By Garcia-Robledo, Carlos Staines, Charles L INTRODUCTION IT IS suggested that rolled-leaf hispine beetles (Hispinae, Coleoptera) and plants from the order Zingiberales maintained a highly specialized plant-herbivore interaction for >60 My. The evidence supporting this old and conservative interaction are herbivory marks found on leaves of the genus Zingiberopsis (Zingiberaceae) from the latest Cretaceous and early Eocene. This fossil herbivory was described as the ichnotaxon...

2008-07-22 18:00:50

The milkweed adheres to the adage Know your enemy by using fast repair work when its defenses are damaged by hungry caterpillars, U.S. researchers said. Cornell University researchers examined the way milkweed evolved to the monarch butterfly caterpillar's changing attempts to disarm the plant, the Ithaca, N.Y., university said in a news release. They found the plant may be evolving away from its defenses against certain caterpillars toward repairing themselves faster than caterpillars...

7b07e38d6e5c4fbf02a022043b710b8e1
2008-07-22 15:50:00

The adage that your enemies know your weaknesses best is especially true in the case of plants and predators that have co-evolved: As the predators evolve new strategies for attack, plants counter with their own unique defenses. Milkweed is the latest example of this response, according to Cornell research suggesting that plant may be shifting away from elaborate defenses against specialized caterpillars toward a more energy-efficient approach. Genetic analysis reveals an evolutionary trend...