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Latest Vespoidea Stories

2011-05-27 15:00:00

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C., May 27, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- As the nation's electrical power grid becomes more interconnected through the Internet -- from the nuclear power plant in California to transmission lines in Texas to the microwave in your kitchen -- the chances of cyber attacks increase as well. Errin Fulp, a professor of computer science at Wake Forest University, is training an army of "digital ants" to turn loose into the power grid to seek out computer viruses trying to...

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2011-05-23 09:41:51

By Shelley Littin, University of Arizona University of Arizona researchers have uncovered evidence in ant colonies that suggests that social networks may function differently than previously assumed Be it through the Internet, Facebook, the local grapevine or the spread of disease, interaction networks influence nearly every part of our lives. Scientists previously assumed that interaction networks without central control, known as self-directed networks, have universal properties that make...

898d5e46b1cdb5050c4ef96d03497aa7
2011-05-13 03:36:37

Study increases understanding of 'coevolved mutualism' between ants and trees Survival in the depths of the tropical rainforest not only depends on a species' ability to defend itself, but can be reliant on the type of cooperation researchers discovered between ants and tropical trees. The research, published in Biotropica, reveals how the ants use chemical signals on their host tree to distinguish them from competing plant species. Once a competing plant is recognized the ants prune them to...

2011-05-09 14:42:44

Tropical carpenter ants (Camponotus leonardi) live high up in the rainforest canopy. When infected by a parasitic fungus (Ophiocordyceps unilateralis) the behaviour of the ants is dramatically changed. They become erratic and zombie-like, and are manipulated by the fungus into dying at a spot that provides optimal conditions for fungal reproduction. New research, published in BioMed Central's open access journal BMC Ecology, looks at altered behaviour patterns in Zombie ants in Thailand and...

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2011-04-26 10:18:02

A plant's sugary offering betrays caterpillars to predatory ants Trichomes, hair-like projections on leaves, are part of a plant's defense against herbivores: they can be obstacles, traps, or reservoirs for toxic substances. The hairs of wild tobacco Nicotiana attenuata contain primarily acyl sugars, which are composed of the common sugar, sucrose, bound to branched chain aliphatic acids, compounds that give baby vomit its distinctive odor. Tiny, freshly hatched caterpillars consume these...

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2011-04-12 11:16:30

Across many groups of animals, species with bigger brains often have better cognitive abilities. But it's been unclear whether overall brain size or the size of specific brain areas is the key. New findings by neurobiologists at the University of Washington suggest that both patterns are important. The researchers found that bigger-bodied social wasps had larger brains and devoted up to three times more of their brain tissue to regions that coordinate social interactions, learning, memory and...

2011-03-02 21:30:26

Four new Brazilian species in the genus Ophiocordyceps have been published in the online journal PLoS ONE. The fungi, named by Dr. Harry Evans and Dr. David Hughes, belong to a group of "zombifying" fungi that infect ants and then manipulate their behavior, eventually killing the ants after securing a prime location for spore dispersal. These results appear in a paper by Evans et al. entitled Hidden Diversity Behind the Zombie-Ant Fungus Ophiocordyceps unilateralis: Four New Species Described...

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2011-02-11 08:10:00

Researchers believe the findings represent the first detailed evidence of an aggression-inducing contact pheromone in any aquatic animal When male squid come into contact with a chemical found on the outside of eggs laid by females, they instantly go from swimming along calmly and minding their own business to a state of extreme aggression, according to a new report published online on February 10 in Current Biology, a Cell Press publication. After just a touch of an egg, males will often...

2011-01-31 13:16:25

A large-scale UC Davis experiment with ants, lizards and seaweed on a dozen Caribbean islands shows that predicting the effects of environmental change on complex natural ecosystems requires a large laboratory. The study, which was led by UC Davis ecologist Jonah Piovia-Scott, is described in today's issue of the journal Science. Piovia-Scott said previous studies have found that environmental changes (such as shifts in temperature, precipitation or storm severity) can affect ecosystems by...

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2011-01-31 09:38:31

Research by the University of Exeter has revealed that ants have a big impact on their local environment as a result of their activity as 'ecosystem engineers' and predators. The study, published in the Journal of Animal Ecology, found that ants have two distinct effects on their local environment. Firstly, through moving of soil by nest building activity and by collecting food they affect the level of nutrients in the soil. This can indirectly impact the local populations of many animal...


Latest Vespoidea Reference Libraries

0_1b176b063c37655d81f4ab248352d3de
2005-09-12 11:56:41

A wasp is any insect of the order Hymenoptera and suborder Apocrita that is not a bee, sawfly, or an ant. The less familiar suborder Symphyta includes the sawflies and wood wasps, which differ from the Apocrita by having a broad connection between the thorax and abdomen. Also, Symphyta larvae are mostly herbivorous and "caterpillarlike", whereas those of Apocrita are largely predatory or parasitic. Most familiar wasps belong to the Aculeata, a division of the Apocrita whose ovipositors are...

40_6890040c3881a91ffa9ae5832977676d
2005-09-12 10:21:44

Spider wasps, also called pompilid wasps or spider-hunting wasps, are insects belonging to a diverse family named Pompilidae, of the order Hymenoptera. Spider wasps are sometimes distinct from other wasps in features such as eye structure (no notch as in Family Vespidae), legs modified for grooming, and in having a groove dividing the mesopleuron (a region of the thorax) into halves. Larvae can also be identified by physical examination. Females are often larger than the males, with...

40_2a82afe2a926ff17f8a6767143261c5b
2005-09-08 12:09:25

Yellowjackets are typically black-and-yellow wasps of the genus Vespula or Dolichovespula (though some can be black-and-white, the most notable of these being the bald-faced hornet, Dolichovespula maculata). They are characterized mostly by their distinctive combination of black-and-yellow color, small size (slightly larger than a bee), and entirely black antennae. They live in colonies and build globular paper nests. Workers are around 12-20 mm in length, depending on species, and feed on...

40_f0d9886e30d819cc3f9700977b463e08
2005-08-25 09:20:52

Paper Wasps are social wasps and make up the genus Polistes. They form small colonies with umbrella-shaped nests in sheltered spots, and are quite mild-mannered. They feed on caterpillars and other soft-bodied insects, most of them pests. Despite the use of the proper name, most social wasps make nests from paper, although some tropical wasp species such as Listenogaster Flavolineata use mud, a far more easy resource for the wasp to collect. The larger colonial species, Yellowjackets,...

40_e84b7351a70d1d2195a6554703b4a633
2005-08-25 08:44:29

A wasp is any insect of the order Hymenoptera and suborder Apocrita that is not a bee, sawfly, or an ant. Less familiar, the suborder Symphyta includes the sawflies and wood wasps, which differ from the Apocrita by having a broad connection between the thorax and abdomen. Also, Symphyta larvae are mostly herbivorous and "caterpillar-like", whereas those of Apocrita are largely predatory or parasitic. Most familiar wasps belong to the Aculeata, a division of the Apocrita whose ovipositors...

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Word of the Day
negawatt
  • A unit of saved energy.
Coined by Amory Lovins, chairman of the Rocky Mountain Institute as a contraction of negative watt on the model of similar compounds like megawatt.