Subscribe
Subscribe
MY AMERICAN SCIENTIST
LOG IN! REGISTER!
SEARCH
 
Logo IMG
HOME > MULTIMEDIA > Multimedia Detail

SCIENCE IN THE NEWS DAILY

Zebra Stripes Evolved to Keep Biting Flies at Bay

from BBC News Online

Why zebras evolved their characteristic black-and-white stripes has been the subject of decades of debate among scientists. Now researchers from Hungary and Sweden claim to have solved the mystery.

The stripes, they say, came about to keep away blood-sucking flies. They report in the Journal of Experimental Biology that this pattern of narrow stripes makes zebras "unattractive" to the flies.

They key to this effect is in how the striped patterns reflect light. "We started off studying horses with black, brown or white coats," explained Susanne Akesson from Lund University, a member of the international research team that carried out the study. "We found that in the black and brown horses, we get horizontally polarised light." This effect made the dark-coloured horses very attractive to flies.

Read more...


comments powered by Disqus
 

Connect With Us:

Facebook Icon Sm Twitter Icon Google+ Icon Pinterest Icon RSS Feed Instagram Icon

Latest Multimedia

VIDEO: The Promise and Peril of Drones

CummingsDrones

The automation of tasks at work and at home is just around the corner, including driving cars, piloting planes, delivering packages, and transporting weapons. Unmanned aerial vehicles are rapidly evolving to meet both society’s and the military’s needs in automation and better efficiency.
During her time as one of the first female fighter pilots in the US Navy, Dr. Missy Cummings observed that computers could take off and land a plane more precisely than humans. Because of this breakthrough and her fascination with this growing technology, she began human–drone interaction research.

To view all multimedia content, click "Latest Multimedia."



RSS Feed Subscription

Receive notification when new content is posted from the entire website, or choose from the customized feeds available.


EMAIL TO A FRIEND :

Of Possible Interest

Science in the News Weekly: 'Open Tree of Life' to Include All Known Species

Science in the News Weekly: Science at the Top of the News for June 4-8

Science In The News Daily: Tree of Life Project Aims for Every Twig and Leaf

Subscribe to American Scientist