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Latest Insect Stories

Caterpillar Gets The Most From Food When Predator Is On The Hunt
2012-07-13 13:37:15

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online While other animals beef up metabolism and stop growing or developing during a defensive period, hornworm caterpillars slow or stop eating but actually keep up their weight and develop a little faster in the short term. Hornworm caterpillars ate 30 percent to 40 percent less when threatened by stink bugs but weighed the same as their non-threatened counterparts as indicated by Ian Kaplan, a Purdue University assistant professor of...

Pests Are Adapting To GM Crops In Unexpected Ways
2012-06-21 05:12:02

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com Modern science is no match for Mother Nature when it comes to agriculture, a new research paper has revealed. The report, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences by a team of scientists, showed that pests are adapting faster than expected to the genetically modified (GM) crops that have been altered to repel them. Many GM crops were originally created to reduce the amount of pesticides used to repel the insects and larvae that...

2012-06-18 10:41:42

The water boatman's unique propulsion system was studied by researchers from China Superhydrophobicity is one of most important interfacial properties between solids and liquids. SHI Yanlong and his group from the College of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Key laboratory of Hexi Corridor Resources Utilization of Gansu Universities, Hexi University investigated the superhydrophobicity of the water boatman's hind wings. The study showed that superhydrophobicity plays a crucial role in...

2012-06-12 11:48:47

Insects can use plants as ℠green phones´ for communication with other bugs. A new study now shows that through those same plants insects are also able to leave ℠voicemail´ messages in the soil. Herbivorous insects store their voicemails via their effects on soil fungi. Researchers from the Netherlands Institute of Ecology (NIOO-KNAW) and Wageningen University (WUR) discovered this unique messaging service in the ragwort plant. The influential journal Ecology Letters will...

Male Virgin Moths Think They're Hot When They're Not
2012-06-07 09:12:58

Female sex odor makes cool males take flight too soon Talk about throwing yourself into a relationship too soon. A University of Utah study found that when a virgin male moth gets a whiff of female sex attractant, he's quicker to start shivering to warm up his flight muscles, and then takes off prematurely when he's still too cool for powerful flight. So his headlong rush to reach the female first may cost him the race. The study illustrates the tradeoff between being quick to start...

Cockroaches And Lizards Use Ninja-like Skills To Quickly Vanish
2012-06-07 08:45:36

[ Watch the Video ] Brett Smith for redOrbit.com Cockroaches performing ninja-like acrobatics surprised University of California, Berkeley biologists who were studying the insect´s locomotion and escape abilities. Graduate student Jean-Michel Mongeau and his colleagues first identified the amazing behavior while studying how roaches´ use their antennae to sense gaps and maneuver across them. "As we made the gap wider, they would end up on the underside of the ramp,"...

How Are Mosquitoes Able To Fly In The Rain?
2012-06-05 08:55:00

[ Watch the Video ] Brett Smith for redOrbit.com Anyone who has ever seen mosquitoes fly in the rain has probably rooted for the tiny pests to be taken out of the air by the constant barrage of aqua missiles sometimes weighing 50 times their mass. Unfortunately, mosquitoes have nothing to worry about because their low mass, wing design, hydrophobicity, and hard exoskeleton afford them substantial protection from the rain, according to a new report published in the Proceedings of...

Giant Insects Ruled The Sky Until Evolution Of Birds Kicked In
2012-06-05 04:02:22

Giant insects in ancient days use to be kings of the sky, until the evolution of birds about 150 million years ago. Scientists at the University of California, Santa Cruz found that despite rising oxygen levels, insects eventually lost their grip as the dominate species in the sky. During the late Carboniferous and early Permian periods the skies were littered with 28-inch dragonfly-like insects and other ancient species that were too big to whack with a fly swatter. The authors of...

2012-05-29 10:02:49

New research from Lund University in Sweden reveals the value of carrying two layers of wings around. The researchers studied dung beetles and the way their protective forewings actually function. These wings do not only protect but also help the beetles to lift off from the ground — albeit at a cost. The forewings of beetles, the elytra, are hardened structures which protect the insect's flying wings and body. The function of the forewings in flight has been questioned, which is...

First Record Of 1 Million Year Old Pollinating Insects Discovered
2012-05-16 04:27:26

A new study, conducted at the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ERSF), details the first recorded cases of pollination by insects. Scientists discovered many insects coated in specks of pollen within two pieces of amber dating back to 110 to 105 million years ago in northern Spain. Amber is the only medium that can contain such highly detailed features such as pollination over millions of years. The team of international scientists includes Xavier Delclòs from the...


Latest Insect Reference Libraries

Leaf Insects, Phylliidae
2014-08-05 10:01:39

Phylliidae is a family of insects most commonly known as leaf insects or walking leaves, which can be found in Southeast Asia and South Asia to Australia. Although it is classified as a family, there is no general agreement on its classification, as many suggest that the family is actually a large taxon that should contain separate families of leaf insects. It is thought that this family has changed little over long periods of time, due to fossil evidence found of a forty-seven million year...

Tetragnatha extensa
2013-10-09 13:17:36

Tetragnatha extensa is a species of spider found across the Northern Hemisphere. It has an elongate body, up to .43 inches long, and assumes a straight line posture when it is alarmed. It lives on low vegetation in damp areas and consumes flying insects which it catches in its web. This spider has a stretched out, cream colored body. The males are smaller than the females at around .35 inches body length, compared to .43 inches in the females. The four pairs of legs are long and a dark...

Yellow-tipped Tigertail, Choristhemis flavoterminata
2013-07-30 13:52:06

The yellow-tipped tigertail (Choristhemis flavoterminata) is species of dragonfly that is native to Queensland, Australia. This species prefers to reside in warm, moist habitats near bodies of water like rivers. The yellow-tipped tigertail reaches an average body length of 1.8 inches and holds a long, thin abdomen. The end of the body holds a bright yellow spot and the wings are light brown in color with a brown spot. Larvae are described as slightly hairy and are light brown or gray in...

Wandering Glider, Pantala flavescens
2013-07-24 12:28:15

The wandering glider (Pantala flavescens), also known as the globe skimmer, is a species of dragonfly that can be found in a large range that includes Easter Island and Europe, although it is rare here, but it typically occurs in tropical and subtropical areas as well as cooler areas like Northern Canada, depending upon the season. This species has been recorded flying at heights of 20,341 feet in the Himalayas, higher than any other dragonfly species. The wandering glider reaches an...

Gray Sanddragon, Progomphus borealis
2013-07-11 13:32:30

The gray sanddragon (Progomphus borealis) is a species of dragonfly that can be found in many areas including Arizona, California, Idaho, Texas, New Mexico, Washington, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. This species prefers a habitat near streams and rivers in desert climates. It is typically seen between the months of June and September, but it can also be seen between April and October. Adult gray sanddragons reach an average body length between 2.2 and 2.4 inches, while its nymphs or larvae...

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Word of the Day
lunula
  • A small crescent-shaped structure or marking, especially the white area at the base of a fingernail that resembles a half-moon.
This word is a diminutive of the Latin 'luna,' moon.
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