Cyphonia clavata

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The next species that I have decided to write about is an insect with a peculiar appendage. The scientific name of the insect is the Cyphonia Clavata. The organism is an insect which also means that it is an invertebrate. Being an invertebrate means that it has no bone structure, but instead has a tough exoskeleton covering to provide structure. This insect is a herbivore. It can use vibrations to send messages to others of its kind on the same host plant. The insect reproduces sexually and the female will inject her eggs into the host plant. The most interesting thing about these insects is there morphology. The insects will actually grow an covering over part of their body that looks like an ant species known to be a tough prey insect. This is a form of camouflage that enables them to use the knowledge that they look like something that is not easily preyed upon to hide from predators. The look of the organism is so that from the top it looks like an ant, but the rest of its body is green and leaf like so that it will blend in with the foliage. The fact that they would use so much energy in producing such an extreme form of camouflage is impressive. This type of growth would be like a human growing another limb on purpose. The fact that this is possible is awe inspiring. That natural selection and evolution would favor such an extreme form of camouflage even with the energy cost is impressive. Scientists do not totally understand how this trait has evolved so that the species can so perfectly grow an imitation of an ant is understandable. Once this is understood however it will most likely help to understand genetic manipulation in such a way that we could mimic this change in other organisms, and maybe one day in humans to produce a new appendage or improve our own appendages.  One would think that this kind of evolution would not even be possible, but the fact that it is just speaks to the diversity of our world. If we can think something up then there is probably some form of life that can do it.



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