bats

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Revisiting FOXP2 and the origins of language

Today, a new paper published in Nature adds another chapter to the story of FOXP2, a gene with important roles in speech and language. The FOXP2 story is a fascinating tale that I covered in New Scientist last year. It’s one of the pieces I’m proudest of so I’m reprinting it here with kind permission…

Impressionists are a mainstay of British comedy, with the likes of Rory Bremner and Alistair MacGowan uncannily mimicking the voices of celebrities and politicians. Now, biologists have found that tiger moths impersonate each other too, and they do so to avoid the jaws of bats. Some creatures like starlings and lyrebirds are accomplished impersonators but…