insect

Tag archives for insect

Crickets are the first insect to now be farmed for human consumption in the United States. I’ll admit the thought of snacking on cricket flour-based chips is not exactly appetizing. But the process of farming insects over more traditional livestock seems to be less wasteful. Insect farming is a more efficient way of producing dietary protein as…

Tawny (or Raspberry) crazy ants (Nylanderia fulva) are an invasive ant species from South America that have been invading the United States. For some reason, the ants are attracted to electronics and have been responsible for the destruction of numerous electronic devices. A new study shows that tawny crazy ants rub formic acid over their…

Eran Levin, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Arizona studies Hawk Moths. He used a technique called backlighting to catch them and in the process catches numerous other insects as well. Moths navigate by keeping bright objects like the moon and stars at a constant angle. It turns out that artificial light disrupts the…

Scientists have discovered what they believe is the first example of interacting gears in young planthopper insects, Issus coleoptratus. The gears are on the upper portion of the insect’s rear legs and help ensure the legs work in unison when the insect jumps. These gears are lost as the animal ages and are thus rather…

Experimental Biology – Monday

Another exciting day for Comparative Physiology! I just got back to my hotel after the wonderful dinner meeting overlooking the Harbor. Of course, the research was exciting too Here are the highlights from today’s sessions: Heinrich E, Bradley T. Univ California, Irvine I learned a lot about the insect tracheal system this morning. Insects do not…

Innovative pest control

Entomologist Dr. Coby Schal at North Carolina State University studies the chemicals involved in insect communication in an effort to more effectively manage pests. His big interest is in chemical communication using pheromones and how they impact mating and other behaviors. His research has aided the control of cockroaches, bed bugs, mosquitoes and other nuisance…

Antimicrobial insect wings

The animation below from Nature shows a bacteria rupturing after landing on nanopillars present on the surface of a clanger cicada (Psaltoda claripennis) wing. Dr. Ivanova (Swinburne University, Australia) and colleagues showed that nanopillars rupture the bacteria by straining the cell wall. Some scientists see this as an opportunity to create anti-bacterial surfaces in public…