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Latest Mimicry Stories

Birds Evolved Distinctive Patterns To Identify Cuckoo Eggs From Their Own
2014-06-19 03:13:09

University of Cambridge For some birds, recognizing their own eggs can be a matter of life or death. In a new study, scientists have shown that many birds affected by the parasitic Common Cuckoo - which lays its lethal offspring in other birds' nests - have evolved distinctive patterns on their eggs in order to distinguish them from those laid by a cuckoo cheat. The study reveals that these signature patterns provide a powerful defense against cuckoo trickery, helping host birds to...

Colorful 'Eyespots' On The Wings Of Butterflies Add Detail To The Story Of Evolution
2014-05-28 03:38:55

Oregon State University A new study of the colorful "eyespots" on the wings of some butterfly species is helping to address fundamental questions about evolution that are conceptually similar to the quandary Aristotle wrestled with about 330 B.C. – "which came first, the chicken or the egg?" After consideration, Aristotle decided that both the egg and the chicken had always existed. That was not the right answer. The new Oregon State University research is providing a little more...

Birds Accept And Raise Brood Parasites’ Young For Fear Of Retaliation
2014-04-18 14:50:57

Max Planck Institute If a restaurant owner fails to pay the protection money demanded of him, he can expect his premises to be trashed. Warnings like these are seldom required, however, as fear of the consequences is enough to make restaurant owners pay up. Similarly, mafia-like behavior is observed in parasitic birds, which lay their eggs in other birds’ nests. If the host birds throw the cuckoo’s egg out, the brood parasites take their revenge by destroying the entire nest....

Earliest Stick Insect Fossils Discovered
2014-03-20 08:06:36

PLOS Wing shape and coloration pattern suggest plant-mimicking stick insects from the Early Cretaceous An ancient stick insect species may have mimicked plant leaves for defense, according to a paper published in the open-access journal PLOS ONE on March 19, 2014 by Maomin Wang, from Capital Normal University, China and colleagues. Many insects have developed defense mechanisms, including the ability to mimic the surrounding environment. Stick and leaf insects mimic plants from...

A Single Gene Controls Wing Mimicry In Butterflies
2014-03-05 14:04:36

University of Chicago A single gene regulates the complex wing patterns, colors and structures required for mimicry in swallowtail butterflies, report scientists from the University of Chicago, March 5 in Nature. Surprisingly, the gene described, doublesex, is already well-known for its critical role in sexual differentiation in insects. "Conventional wisdom says that it should be multiple genes working together to control the whole wing pattern of a butterfly," said Marcus Kronforst,...

ronan sea lion
2014-02-16 05:10:18

[ Watch the Video: Beat Keeping in a California Sea Lion ] redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online The California sea lion that originally became an Internet sensation last year because of the way she bobbed her head in time with music was the focus of research presented by scientists Saturday at the 2014 annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in Chicago. Ronan, who lives at Long Marine Laboratory at the University of...

Research Shows Cuckoos Impersonate Hawks By Matching Their 'Outfits'
2013-10-16 11:54:30

University of Cambridge New research shows that cuckoos have striped or "barred" feathers that resemble local birds of prey, such as sparrowhawks, that may be used to frighten birds into briefly fleeing their nest in order to lay their parasitic eggs. By using the latest digital image analysis techniques, and accounting for "bird vision" - by converting images to the spectral sensitivity of birds - researchers have been able to show for the first time that the barred patterns on a...

Cheats Of The Bird World
2013-09-25 08:49:56

University of Exeter Cuckoo finches that lay more than one egg in their victims' nests have a better chance of bamboozling host parents into fostering their parasitic young, a study has found. Dr Martin Stevens from the University of Exeter and Dr Claire Spottiswoode from the University of Cambridge, with Dr Jolyon Troscianko at the University of Exeter, demonstrated that when African cuckoo finch females lay more than one egg in the same nest of their African tawny-flanked prinia...

Effectiveness Of Camouflage Types
2013-09-11 11:08:04

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online From military personnel to potential prey, camouflage has proven to be an effective way to evade detection. However, a new study from the University of Exeter has found that some ‘predators’ can learn to read certain types of camouflage more easily than other types. Using human volunteers as their 'predators' in a video game-like simulation, study researchers discovered that high contrast markings on virtual moths, similar to the...

Honeyguide Birds Destroy Their Own Species' Eggs To Eliminate Competition
2013-08-21 09:19:04

University of Cambridge Scientists believe behavior drives evolution of egg size similar to hosts Like cuckoos, honeyguides are parasitic birds that lay their eggs in other birds' nests and dupe them into raising their young. Now scientists reveal that, unlike in cuckoos, the resemblance between honeyguide eggs and those of their bee-eater bird hosts hasn't evolved to trick hosts into accepting the imposter egg as one of their own. Rather, it appears to have evolved to trick other...


Latest Mimicry Reference Libraries

39_5331cfef0f677884ac59235c1f903204
2007-02-25 21:04:29

Combtooth blennies are blennioids; perciform marine fish of the family Blenniidae. They are the largest family of blennies, with approximately 371 species in 53 genera represented. Combtooth blennies are found in tropical and subtropical waters in the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans; some species are also found in brackish and even freshwater environments. Physical description The body plan of the Combtooth blennies is archetypal to all other blennioids; their blunt heads and eyes...

40_c79a9ae16083a994e518c081bf23855d
2005-09-08 11:25:28

Flower-flies (also known as hover-flies) are a family of flies (Diptera), with the scientific name of "Syrphidae". As their names suggests, they are most often seen around flowers. The adults feed mainly on nectar and pollen, while the larvae (maggots) eat a wide range of foods. In certain species, the larvae are saprophytes, eating decaying plant and animal matter in the soil or in ponds and streams. In others, the larvae are insectivores and prey on aphids, thrips, and other...

40_8ce94a775a333fe9368766757b029404
2005-08-25 10:17:06

The Monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus) is a well-known North American butterfly with easily identifiable orange and black wings. The females have darker veins on their wings, and the males have a spot in the center of each hindwing from which pheromones are released. Monarchs are especially noted for their lengthy annual migration. They make massive southward migrations from August through October. A northward migration takes place in the spring. During these migrations the females...

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Word of the Day
baudekin
  • A rich embroidered or brocaded silk fabric woven originally with a warp of gold thread.
'Baudekin' seems to be an alternative form of 'baldachin,' from the Italian 'Baldacco,' Baghdad, the city where the material was made.
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