Adriana Briscoe, Noah Cowan, NPR discussed on Short Wave

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Okay. Yeah. So I thought the photoreceptors in the general thing was pretty cool. But then on, explain to me what she does with butterflies in her lab at UC Irvine. Gosh is so fun to train. Butterflies is so cool to learn more about how butterflies seat Color Adriana trains them to fly towards. Let's say a certain type of Red Light. What we do is we train them to associate a colored light of a particular wave league with something. They really want butterflies always want nectar. And so we feed them by just placing them on the colored light I'm rolling for bosses letting them SIP. I, mean if the biggest question of Your Butterfly Day is who's going to unroll your purpose sticky next to a yummy pile of laboratory grade nectar. That's pretty good. Right, and after about a week, Adriana introduces a second colored light one, they haven't been trained to attacked. You give him the choice, and if they correctly choose the train collar, you know that they can distinguish between those two lights. Now, there's a little twisted us, which is that you have to test them over a series of relative brightness of two lights because. Some insects are positively or tactic meeting that they love flying toward. <hes>. Aside from Understanding Butterfly Vision better. What kind of light and colors butterflies see could help us better understand how not to interfere with their environment. If we want to design buildings and unnatural objects that are sustainable dome inversely affect our animal and insect populations, we need to know something about what their sensory world is like. So. We mentioned that China has to make sure that the little butterfly isn't just flying towards the brightest light in her experiments. A lot of insects do that, and that's because scientists think it's part of a survival strategy. You can imagine that if you're a butterfly lie in forest under the canopy. It's a little bit darker under the canopy. Then if you're flying above the treetops <hes> and butterflies are constantly trying to avoid being eaten by lizards and birds, and one of the things that they do is they an escape response, which is to fly towards the Brightness Patch of light. They can find in their visual field. Yeah, and that's often a gap in the canopy. On, the subject of flying, it's actually something. Butterflies can't always do at the drop of a hat. They need to be warm to fly, but they're cold. So Adriana says, if you've ever seen a butterfly hanging out slowly opening and closing its wings that's called basking. They can open their wings. The wings pick up some like that hopes. Up Right, but they also have to be very careful. Opening their wings is really because it also means that usually they're more powerful parts are now visible to potential

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