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Insects and Arachnids

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Nature Blows My Mind! Macro photos show jewel-like details of butterfly wings. Mechanisms of collective decision-making in bees. Log In. Set your meetings, phone calls and emails aside, at least for the next several minutes.

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That’s because today you’re a bee. It's time to leave your hive, or your underground burrow, and forage for pollen. Pollen is the stuff that flowers use to reproduce. But it’s also essential grub for you, other bees in your hive and your larvae. Once you’ve gathered pollen to take home, you or another bee will mix it with water and flower nectar that other bees have gathered and stored in the hive. Crafty Ants Form Conga Lines to Drag Millipedes to Doom. This Is Why Insects Rule the World.

When they fly right up your nose or wave at your from the sugar bowl, you might not be very thankful for insects.

This Is Why Insects Rule the World

Like it or not, though, you're surrounded—there are about 10 quintillion on Earth, including about 10 quadrillion ants. Insects evolved 400 million years ago, among the first animals to “crawl out of the sea, shake off the mud, and ... get wings,” says Katy Prudic, an entomologist at the University of Arizona. “When Earth’s oxygen levels shrank, so did the insects”—allowing them to breathe and escape predators more quickly. Insects evolved to be so tough and adaptable that they survived several mass extinctions. Who Invented Agriculture First? It Sure Wasn't Humans. Various species of ants engage in some kind of agriculture.

Who Invented Agriculture First? It Sure Wasn't Humans

Here, a leaf-cutter ant gathers food for its fungus farm. Mark Bowler/Science Source. Romanian cave sealed for 5.5 million years is full of strange creatures. Earth - The world's largest spider is the size of a dinner plate. You might think you would notice an eight-legged animal the size of a dinner plate, but in fact many of the world's biggest spiders are easily overlooked.

Earth - The world's largest spider is the size of a dinner plate

In Europe, the Desertas wolf spider is only found in a single valley on the island of Madeira, Portugal. It is one of the world's largest wolf spiders, with a body length of up to 1.6 inches (4cm) and distinctive black legs with white polka dots. The family name conjures up fierce and predatory associations, and rightly so. Wolf spiders are named for their active hunting style. Flowers get an electrifying buzz out of visiting bees. By Douglas Heaven Plants could turn out to be one of the more chatty organisms.

Flowers get an electrifying buzz out of visiting bees

Recent studies have shown they can communicate with a surprising range of cues. Now it turns out they could be sending out electrical signals, too. As they fly through the air, bees – like all insects – acquire a positive electric charge. When Wasps Are Given Colored Paper, They Build Rainbow Nests. BBC - Earth News - Ant mega-colony takes over world. A queen and worker Argentine ant have many, many relatives A single mega-colony of ants has colonised much of the world, scientists have discovered.

BBC - Earth News - Ant mega-colony takes over world

Argentine ants living in vast numbers across Europe, the US and Japan belong to the same inter-related colony, and will refuse to fight one another. The colony may be the largest of its type ever known for any insect species, and could rival humans in the scale of its world domination. Why do honeybees love hexagons? - Zack Patterson and Andy Peterson. Subterranean Ant Cities are Far More Complex than Anyone Thought Possible. Dragonfly Planes ~ The Future of Flight. We can learn so much from nature.

Dragonfly Planes ~ The Future of Flight

So much so, that if we modeled all of our technology off of the basic principles of how nature operates, we would be in very good hands. Using the law of conservation of energy, we would make sure that all power was used to the most efficient and effective means possible. For example, modelling our Solar Panels off of Photosynthesis, free energy becomes as commonplace as cars on roads… or sliced bread!

Listen to the lovely orchestra of crickets singing at human speed [audio] [updated. World's largest aquatic insect specimen found in China. By Zoe Li, CNN July 22, 2014 -- Updated 1152 GMT (1952 HKT) Large enough to cover the face of a human adult, this scary-looking insect is also known among entomologists as an indicator of good water quality.

World's largest aquatic insect specimen found in China

Ants Are Capable of Changing Their Priorities. Ants are highly social and they must work together to provide food and shelter for the entire colony.

Ants Are Capable of Changing Their Priorities

It has recently been discovered that there is no set hierarchy on the importance of these aspects, as ants are capable of learning from previous experience to assess a current situation and determine what is most important at that time. Takao Sasaki and Stephen C. Pratt from Arizona State University’s School of Life Sciences have published their findings in Biology Letters. The study was focused on Temnothorax rugatulus, an ant species native to the west coast of North America, stretching from British Colombia, Canada down to Arizona in the Sonoran Desert. Ants have many options to consider when looking for a new place to live. The Most Beautifully Terrifying Spiders You Never Knew Existed. Macro Photographs of Singapore’s Most Unusual Insects and Arachnids by Nicky Bay.