Current Camouflage News and Events

Current Camouflage News and Events, Camouflage News Articles.
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Simulating evolution to understand a hidden switch
Some organisms evolve an internal switch that can remain hidden for generations until stress flicks it on. (2021-01-15)

Master of disguise is new genus and species of cylindrical bark beetle
A resemblance to moss, lichens and fungi made for fantastic cover by a new genus and species of cylindrical bark beetle described by an Oregon State University College of Science researcher. (2021-01-11)

3D-printed smart gel changes shape when exposed to light
Inspired by the color-changing skin of cuttlefish, octopuses and squids, Rutgers engineers have created a 3D-printed smart gel that changes shape when exposed to light, becomes ''artificial muscle'' and may lead to new military camouflage, soft robotics and flexible displays. The engineers also developed a 3D-printed stretchy material that can reveal colors when light changes, according to their study in the journal ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces. (2021-01-05)

Weedy Seadragon genomics reveal highly distinct populations
To describe weedy seadragons as unique is an understatement. With a fused, elongated jaw, body armour, leafy appendages and no pelvic fins, these fish are like no other. Found only along Australia's temperate coast, numbers have been declining. Now a landmark study using genomics reveals four distinct populations in south-eastern Australia. The research team recommends these populations be managed separately. (2020-12-23)

Active camouflage artificial skin in visible-to-infrared range
Cephalopods' exceptional ability to hide into any background has inspired researchers to replicate their fascinating ability to camouflage in the infrared (IR) and visible spectrum. Recent advances offered a number of physical mechanisms to reproduce the cloaking functionalities of cephalopods. However, most of works focused on either camouflaging in the visible or IR camouflage range only: not dual modes in a single device structure that can readily switch between the visible and IR mode according to a suitable situation. (2020-12-02)

To evade humans, this medicinal plant has evolved to hide in plain sight
Researchers reporting November 20, 2020 in the journal Current Biology have found that, in places where the herb is harvested more, the plant has evolved to blend in better with the background, making them harder for people to find. As a result, the plant varies in color from brown or grey to green, depending on whether it lives in a place that is frequented by human collectors or not. (2020-11-23)

Plant evolves to become less visible to humans
A plant used in traditional Chinese medicine has evolved to become less visible to humans, new research shows. (2020-11-20)

Can animals use iridescent colours to communicate?
New paper sheds light on the colourful world of animal communication, highlighting the challenges of studying accurately how iridescent colours work in nature (2020-11-19)

Bacteria convince their squid host to create a less hostile work environment
Bacteria living symbiotically within the Hawaiian bobtail squid can direct the host squid to change its normal gene-expression program to make a more inviting home, according to a new study by researchers at the University of Hawai'i. (2020-11-18)

Asymmetric optical camouflage: Tuneable reflective color accompanied by optical Janus effect
Deliverying viewing-direction sensitive information display across single sheet of transreflective window is introduced. Based on the experimental verification of theoretical modelling, scientists in Republic of Korea invented colour tuneable optical device that displays different colours and messages depending on viewing direction which is completely new and exotic optical phenomenon. A step further, they realized asymmetric information encryption via colour matching across the distinct colour boundary. (2020-10-20)

Immune protein orchestrates daily rhythm of squid-bacteria symbiotic relationship
New research led by University of Hawai'i at Mānoa scientists revealed that, in the mutually beneficial relationship between with the Hawaiian bobtail squid and the luminescent bacterium, Vibrio fischeri, an immune protein called ''macrophage migration inhibitory factor'' is the maestro of daily rhythms. (2020-10-19)

Scientists discover why tarantulas come in vivid blues and greens
Researchers from Yale-NUS College and Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) find support for new hypotheses: that tarantulas' vibrant blue colours may be used to communicate between potential mates, while green colouration confers the ability to conceal among foliage. Their research also suggests that tarantulas are not as colour-blind as previously believed, and that these arachnids may be able to perceive the bright blue tones on their bodies. (2020-09-24)

This cuttlefish is flamboyant on special occasions only!
The flashy Flamboyant Cuttlefish is among the most famous of the cephalopods (octopus, squid, and cuttlefish) - but it is widely misunderstood by its legions of fans. A new paper from the Roger Hanlon laboratory at the Marine Biological Laboratory, Woods Hole, sets the record straight. (2020-08-19)

Scientists discover how deep-sea, ultra-black fish disappear
In the July 16 issue of the journal Current Biology, a team of scientists led by Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History research zoologist Karen Osborn and Duke University biologist Sönke Johnsen report on how a unique arrangement of pigment-packed granules enables some fish to absorb nearly all of the light that hits their skin, so that as little as 0.05% of that light is reflected back. (2020-07-16)

Ultra-black skin allows some fish to lurk unseen
Scientists report that at least 16 species of deep-sea fish have evolved ultra-black skin that absorbs more than 99.5% of the light that hits them, making them nearly impossible to pick out from the shadows. These fish owe their disappearing act to tiny packets of pigment within their skin cells called melanosomes. The melanosomes of ultra-black fish are differently shaped and arranged on a microscopic level, compared with regular black fish, says a new study. (2020-07-16)

Green is more than skin-deep for hundreds of frog species
The through-and-through greenness of hundreds of frog species that can be found deep in their lymphatic fluid, soft tissues and even bones, comes from a clever biochemical workaround that combines a normally virus-fighting type of protein with a toxic byproduct of blood breakdown. The camouflage innovation has happened at least 40 times across 11 families of frog and toad. (2020-07-13)

Mirror image tumor treatment
Our immune system ought to be able to recognize and kill tumor cells. However, many tumors deceive the immune system. For example, they induce the so-called immune checkpoints of T-cells to shut down immune responses. In the journal Angewandte Chemie, scientists have now introduced a new approach for immunological tumor treatment. Their method is based on the specific blockade of an immune checkpoint by a stable ''mirror-image'' peptide. (2020-07-08)

Amber fossils unlock true color of 99-million-year-old insects
A research team from the Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeontology of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (NIGPAS) has now unlocked the secrets of true coloration in the 99-million-year-old insects. (2020-06-30)

Fish evolution in action: Land fish forced to adapt after leap out of water
Many blennies - a remarkable family of fishes - evolved from an aquatic 'jack of all trades' to a 'master of one' upon the invasion of land, a new study led by UNSW scientists has shown. (2020-06-17)

UCI scientists engineer human cells with squid-like transparency
In a paper published today in Nature Communications, scientists at the University of California, Irvine described how they drew inspiration from cephalopod skin to endow mammalian cells with tunable transparency and light-scattering characteristics. (2020-06-02)

Bristol scientists see through glass frogs' translucent camouflage
Glass frogs are well known for their see-through skin but, until now, the reason for this curious feature has received no experimental attention. A team of scientists from the University of Bristol, McMaster University, and Universidad de Las Américas Quito, sought to establish the ecological importance of glass frog translucency and, in doing so, have revealed a novel form of camouflage. (2020-05-25)

How the darter got stripes: Expanding a sexual selection theory explains animal patterns
Samuel Hulse at UMBC and colleagues have shown for the first time that there is a strong correlation between the complex patterns on male darters and their highly-variable environments. The findings support and expand upon sensory drive theory, which states that the environment influences which sexual signals, like visual patterns, are selected for. Previous sensory drive research looked at simple signals (e.g. colors), but Hulse used Fourier analysis to greatly expand that work. (2020-05-22)

Grasshoppers are perfectly aware of their own coloration when trying to camouflage
A research team from the Pablo de Olavide University of Seville, led by Pim Edelaar, has carried out an experimental study that shows that grasshoppers are perfectly aware of their own colouration when choosing the place that provides them with better camouflage. The research findings, published in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B, show how organisms are able to adjust their environment, each according to their individual needs. (2020-05-20)

Jurassic stick insect performed mimicry to defend against predators
Yang et al. reported the earliest mimetic and defensive strategies of a stick insect from the Middle Jurassic of China, Aclistophasma echinulatum gen. et sp. nov., exquisitely preserving abdominal extensions and femoral spines. The new fossil provides clues into early antipredator defensive strategies and allows inferences as to the potential environment and predators, and reveals mimetic and defensive mechanisms of stick insects from 165 million years ago. (2020-05-18)

Fossil record analysis hints at evolutionary origins of insects' structural colors
Researchers from Yale-NUS College in Singapore and University College Cork have analyzed preserved scales from wing cases of two fossil weevils from the Late Pleistocene era to better understand the origin of light-scattering nanostructures present in present-day insects. The study suggests the weevils' colors evolved initially for camouflage amongst their leafy background before diversifying for other functions such as to signal potential mates or deter predators. (2020-04-14)

Natural light flicker can help prevent detection
Movement breaks camouflage, making it risky for anything trying to hide. New research, published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B today [1 April] has shown that dynamic features common in many natural habitats, such as moving light patterns, can reduce being located when moving. (2020-04-01)

Researchers create a new acoustic smart material inspired by shark skin
USC researchers created a new sharkskin-inspired smart material that allows shifts in acoustic transmission on demand using magnets. As a result the new material can achieve multiple properties in one structure by switching between states, for example transmitting and also damping external noise transmission in a submarine through a single device. This smart material can recreate properties intrinsic to electronic devices such as switches, thus showing promise of smart sound transmission--a sound ''computer.'' (2020-03-10)

Ship noise leaves crabs too stressed to hide from danger
The ocean is getting too loud even for crabs. Normally, shore crabs (Carcinus maenas) can slowly change their shell color to blend in with the rocky shore, but recent findings show that prolonged exposure to the sounds of ships weakens their camouflaging powers and leaves them more open to attack. The work, appearing March 9 in the journal Current Biology, illustrates how man-made undersea noise can turn shore crabs into sitting ducks for predators. (2020-03-09)

Ship noise hampers crab camouflage
Colour-changing crabs struggle to camouflage themselves when exposed to noise from ships, new research shows. (2020-03-09)

This wearable device camouflages its wearer no matter the weather
Researchers at the University of California San Diego developed a wearable technology that can hide its wearer from heat-detecting sensors such as night vision goggles, even when the ambient temperature changes -- a feat that current state of the art technology cannot match. The technology can adapt to temperature changes in just a few minutes, while keeping the wearer comfortable. (2020-03-03)

Zoology: Biofluorescence may be widespread among amphibians
Biofluorescence, where organisms emit a fluorescent glow after absorbing light energy, may be widespread in amphibians including salamanders and frogs, according to a study in Scientific Reports. Biofluorescence had previously been observed in only one salamander and three frog species. (2020-02-27)

Mosaic evolution painted lorikeets a rainbow of color
A new study examines how color evolved in one of the flashiest groups of parrots -- Australasian lorikeets -- finding that different plumage patches on the birds evolved independently. The study helps explain why it's possible for the birds' faces and front sides to display a dazzling variety of colors -- from vibrant ultraviolet blue only visible to other birds to deep crimson and black -- while their wings and backs tend to be the same color: green. (2020-02-26)

Deaf moths evolved noise-cancelling scales to evade prey
Some species of deaf moths can absorb as much as 85 per cent of the incoming sound energy from predatory bats -- who use echolocation to detect them. The findings, published in Royal Society Interface today, reveal the moths, who are unable to hear the ultrasonic calls of bats, have evolved this clever defensive strategy to help it survive. (2020-02-25)

How the immune system becomes blind to cancer cells
Researchers have described the activation of a key protein used by tumor cells to stop the body's immune response. (2020-01-31)

Squid brains approach that of dogs
We are closer to understanding the incredible ability of squid to instantly camouflage themselves thanks to research from The University of Queensland. Dr. Wen-Sung Chung and Professor Justin Marshall, from UQ's Queensland Brain Institute, completed the first MRI-based mapping of the squid brain in 50 years to develop an atlas of neural connections. (2020-01-28)

Jewel beetles' sparkle helps them hide in plain sight
Bright colors are often considered an evolutionary tradeoff in the animal kingdom. Yes, a male peacock's colorful feathers may help it attract a mate, but they also make it more likely to be seen by a predator. Jewel beetles and their iridescent wing cases may be an exception to the rule, researchers report in the journal Current Biology. They found that the insects' bright colors can act as a form of camouflage. (2020-01-23)

Brilliant iridescence can conceal as well as attract
A new study shows for the first time that the striking iridescent colours seen in some animals increase their chances of survival against predators by acting as a means of camouflage. Rather than reveal it seems these dynamically changing shades are used to conceal, according to the University of Bristol study published today in Current Biology. (2020-01-23)

The mysterious, legendary giant squid's genome is revealed
Important clues about the anatomy and evolution of the mysterious giant squid (Architeuthis dux) are revealed through publication of its full genome sequence by a University of Copenhagen-led team that includes scientist Caroline Albertin of the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL), Woods Hole. (2020-01-16)

Animals should use short, fast movements to avoid being located
Most animals need to move, whether this is to seek out food, shelter or a mate. New research has shown that movement doesn't always break camouflage and if an animal needs to move, animals that are unpatterned and use short, fast movements are less likely to be located by predators. (2020-01-15)

Animals reduce the symmetry of their markings to improve camouflage
Some forms of camouflage have evolved in animals to exploit a loophole in the way predators perceive their symmetrical markings. The University of Bristol findings, published in Proceedings of the Royal Society B today, describe how animals have evolved to mitigate this defensive disadvantage in their coloration. (2020-01-14)

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