Insects

Butterflies and moths suck up pollen with static electricitypeacock-butterfly.png

Butterflies and moths suck up pollen with static electricity

While bees get most of the pollination hype, butterflies and moths are some of our planet’s power pollinators. While in flight, they collect so much static electricity that pollen grains from flowers are pulled up without the insects even touching the plants. The pollen can travel in air gaps across several millimeters or centimeters this […]

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Ant gets bee-slapped, and other strange bug momentsbee-slapping-ant.png

Ant gets bee-slapped, and other strange bug moments

Some honey bees in parts of Asia have an effective way of keeping intruders out of their hives. They slap them–with lightning speed. Video included in a study published July 10 in the journal Ecology shows how they send ants tumbling away. Ants are often attracted to beehives due to their large stores of larvae,

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The Olympics has been obsessed with sex for centuriesolympics-early-female-athletes.jpg

The Olympics has been obsessed with sex for centuries

What’s the weirdest thing you learned this week? Well, whatever it is, we promise you’ll have an even weirder answer if you listen to PopSci’s hit podcast. The Weirdest Thing I Learned This Week hits Apple, Spotify, YouTube, and everywhere else you listen to podcasts every-other Wednesday morning. It’s your new favorite source for the

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Dragonflies reveal how toxic mercury moves in natureDragonfly-Flower.jpg

Dragonflies reveal how toxic mercury moves in nature

Ecologists often rely on health data of fish and bird populations to measure a region’s mercury contamination. But this analysis can be expensive, time consuming, and exclude many desert ecosystems. Yet, one creature is easily found in almost any habitat that contains even minimal amounts of water—dragonflies. Now, after enlisting volunteers to gather the insects’

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How ants acts for the common good of the colonyharvester-ants.jpg

How ants acts for the common good of the colony

The emergent complexity of ant societies is one of the most fascinating phenomena in the natural world: how do these tiny creatures form such intricate social networks? These networks are so nuanced that the colony itself is sometimes referred to as an organism—or “superorganism”—in its own right, with individual ants as its component parts. A

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What’s going on with spotted lanternflies?lanternfly.jpg

What’s going on with spotted lanternflies?

If you live anywhere from central Virginia to southern New England, you’ve probably witnessed the hordes up close: Massive numbers of polka-dotted pests clustered on vines, branches, and buildings. They start showing up in the springtime as black and white nymphs raining down from the canopy. Then, they go through months of growth stages, becoming

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These viking ladies tried to start a trend for pointy heads, but it didn’t take offcone-shaped-skull-2.jpg

These viking ladies tried to start a trend for pointy heads, but it didn’t take off

What’s the weirdest thing you learned this week? Well, whatever it is, we promise you’ll have an even weirder answer if you listen to PopSci’s hit podcast. The Weirdest Thing I Learned This Week hits Apple, Spotify, YouTube, and everywhere else you listen to podcasts every-other Wednesday morning. It’s your new favorite source for the

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Watch a carpenter ant chew off another's wounded leg to try to save its lifeamputations.jpg

Watch a carpenter ant chew off another’s wounded leg to try to save its life

Humans are not the only animal species that tries to heal wounds–or even perform amputations. Some carpenter ants appear to treat their nestmates with wound cleaning or removal of a limb and could even be tailoring the course of treatment depending on the type of injury. The findings are described in a study published July

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