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Latest Insect Stories

2012-01-26 13:27:38

Winged predators seek certain trees when foraging for caterpillars Location matters for birds on the hunt for caterpillars, according to researchers at UC Irvine and Wesleyan University. Findings suggest that chickadees and others zero in on the type of tree as much as the characteristics of their wriggly prey. Unfortunately for caterpillars, munching on tree leaves that are healthy and tasty can dramatically boost their own risk of becoming food. Study results, published online this...

2012-01-19 15:10:11

According to a new study published in the Journal of Economic Entomology (http://bit.ly/AlYBUM) by University of Florida researchers, a key amino acid essential for human nutrition is also an effective insecticide against caterpillars that threaten the citrus industry. The Lime Swallowtail, or Citrus Swallowtail, is a well-known agricultural pest from southern Asia discovered in the Caribbean in 2006, and researchers say its potential impact on the U.S. citrus industry is cause for serious...

Insects Top Latest Inventory Of Newly Discovered Species
2012-01-19 04:44:57

Annual ℠State of Observed Species´ report released by International Institute for Species Exploration More than half of the 19,232 species newly known to science in 2009, the most recent calendar year of compilation, were insects — 9,738 or 50.6 percent — according to the 2011 State of Observed Species (SOS) report released Jan. 18 by the International Institute for Species Exploration at Arizona State University. The second largest group in the 2009 numbers was...

Image 1 - Fruit Flies Look To The Sky To Stay On Course
2012-01-18 05:08:52

[ Watch the Video ] Insects, equipped with complex compound eyes, can maintain a constant heading in their travels, some of them for thousands of miles. New research demonstrates that fruit flies keep their bearings by using the polarization pattern of natural skylight, bolstering the belief that many, if not all, insects have that capability. "If you go out in a field, lie on your back and look up at the sky, that's pretty much what an insect sees," said Michael Dickinson, a University...

Micro Fuel-Cells May Turn Insects Into Spies
2012-01-10 11:01:18

Is this the stuff that sci-fi movies are made of? Researchers have been working to outfit insects with tiny electronic sensors in hopes of creating insects that can be used in applications ranging from search-and-rescue to espionage, reports John Roach for MSNBC. Researchers recently published findings in the Journal of the American Chemistry Society which suggests that they are close to solving the problem of finding a reliable power source for the bug-borne sensors. Batteries alone...

2012-01-06 14:43:53

Case Western Reserve University scientists take step toward cyborg An insect's internal chemicals can be converted to electricity, potentially providing power for sensors, recording devices or to control the bug, a group of researchers at Case Western Reserve University report. The finding is yet another in a growing list from universities across the country that could bring the creation of insect cyborgs — touted as possible first responders to super spies — out of science...

The Wondrous World Of Insects
2012-01-05 05:12:08

UA Insect Discovery program facilitators have spent years teaching Tucson area youth about the lives of insects while also encouraging them to pursue higher education and studies in science. The program is getting even more financial backing and other support. Holding a square, plastic container, Kathleen Walker turned toward the captivated group of dozens of elementary school students seated before her. She asked: "Do you think there's a cow in here?" The kindergarteners respond in...

Image 1 - Ancient Crickets Hint At The Origins Of Insect Hearing
2012-01-04 04:53:04

How did insects get their hearing? A new study of 50 million year-old cricket and katydid fossils – sporting some of the best preserved fossil insect ears described to date– help trace the evolution of the insect ear, says a new study by researchers working at the National Evolutionary Synthesis Center. Insects hear with help from unusual ears, said co-author Roy Plotnick of the University of Illinois at Chicago. Grasshoppers have ears on their abdomens. Lacewings have ears on...

Image 1 - Insects Could Help Find Disaster Survivors
2011-12-26 08:11:50

Insects outfitted with tiny cameras and microphones could be used to help find survivors of earthquakes and other disasters during search and rescue operations, scientists have said. The device will be powered by the insect themselves as they move. By converting kinetic energy into electricity, the devices could have a lasting power source. The device could also harness electricity from heat given off as well. The idea is that once these insects, particularly beetles, are fitted with...

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...


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
barghest
  • A goblin in English folklore, often appearing in the shape of a large dog and believed to portend imminent death or misfortune.
  • A ghost, wraith, hobgoblin, elf, or spirit.
The origin of 'barghest' is not known, but it may be from perhaps burh-ghest, town-ghost, or German Berg-geist (mountain spirit) or Bär-geist (bear-spirit).
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