Five Amino Acid Differences Separate Males from Female Honey Bees

It’s taken nearly 200 years, but scientists in Arizona and Europe have teased out how the molecular switch for sex gradually and adaptively evolved in the honey bee. The first genetic mechanism for sex determination was proposed in the mid-1800s by a Silesian monk named Johann Dzierson, according to the study’s co-author and Arizona State […]

Young Trees with Slippery Bark are More Resistant to Pine Beetles

Trees with smoother bark are better at repelling attacks by mountain pine beetles, which have difficulty gripping the slippery surface, according to a new study by the University of Colorado Boulder. The findings, published online in the journal Functional Ecology, may help land managers make decisions about which trees to cull and which to keep […]

Gallery of Christmas-themed Insect Photos

From green-and-red beetles, to caterpillars that look like snow flakes, this photo collection at features 16 insect photos that will remind you of Christmas. There’s even one that looks like a reindeer. Click here for the photo gallery.

Do Female Praying Mantises Always Eat the Males?

By Richard Levine An urban legend about female praying mantises always eating males during or after mating has circulated for a long time. However, reality is much more complicated. Kyle Hurley, an entomology student from the University of Central Arkansas, spent two years observing praying mantises in the lab and made some startling observations. For […]

Studying Insects can Show how Human Projects Impact Ecosystems

As the largest dam removal in U.S. history brought Pacific salmon back to Washington state’s Elwha River for the first time in nearly a century, scientists were considering the changing ecosystem’s impact on those foundational Elwha Valley dwellers: insects. In the spring, entomology professor Richard Zack brought to Washington State University some millions of specimens […]