SPEAK­ING OF STICK IN­SECTS ...

Science Illustrated - - SCIENCE UPDATE -

HUGE SPECIES RE­VIVED ON AUS­TRALIAN IS­LAND

In 1918, a large stick in­sect species went ex­tinct on Lord Howe Is­land. The 15cm in­sect was con­sumed by ship's rats. Gene stud­ies have re­vealed that the species still ex­ists on an­other small is­land. The au­thor­i­ties aim to rein­tro­duce the species to Lord Howe Is­land.

BAC­TE­RIA COULD IM­PROVE AN­TIBI­OTICS

Di­a­pherodes gi­gan­tea stick in­sects carry bac­te­ria that are re­sis­tant to an­tibi­otics. Sci­en­tists aim to find out if the bac­te­ria de­vel­oped their re­sis­tance in the en­counter with the plants that the in­sect con­sumes. If they find how the bac­te­ria be­come re­sis­tant, they might be able to pre­vent it.

PER­FUME AT­TRACTS THE PER­FECT MATE

Bri­tish sci­en­tists have re­vealed how stick in­sects find each other. Each species has its own in­di­vid­ual mix of oils on its sur­face: a per­fume that al­lows them to smell their way to the per­fect part­ner, which should prefer­ably be not too closely ge­net­i­cally re­lated. This pre­vents ge­netic dis­ease.

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