Animals in Disguise: An Introduction to Camouflage and Mimicry

This flounder is almost invisible against gravel on the seabed. Photograph by Moondigger.

Escaping predation and finding food are challenges faced by all living creatures. Hiding and hunting are obvious solutions, but many animals – both prey and predator – have evolved a more subtle approach. By disguising themselves as other animals, plants or even inanimate objects, mimics and camouflaged creatures have an evolutionary advantage over their less duplicitous counterparts. Camouflage: Hiding in […]

Endosymbiosis in Aphids: Nutrients from Symbiotic Bacteria Help Greenfly Survive on Plant Sap

Aphids

The humble aphid may appear unremarkable, but it is cleverly adapted to its plant-sucking way of life. Symbiotic bacteria greatly increase the ability of plant lice, also known as greenflies, to grow and reproduce, causing annoyance to gardeners and damage to crops worldwide. Plant Sap Provides Insufficient Nutrients In general, aphids disregard the flowers, fruits […]