Sunday Links

Entomology students aren’t normally the ones under the microscope, but at the annual Linnaean Games, a national insect trivia competition, they are scrutinized as closely as their own six-legged subjects. Before a crowd of more than a thousand, the larval scholars – mostly PhD candidates – struggle with categories like “Name That Pest” and “Know Your Bug Families.” They tackle current events – this year, expect questions on the emerald ash borer, a beetle poised to wipe out the nation’s ash trees – and high culture. Who wrote the poem “My Butterfly?” (Robert Frost.) Who composed “Flight of the Bumblebee?” (Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov.)’”

  • Catalogue of Organisms brings us a sordid tale of larval pregnancy and matricidal cannibalism. Oh, those appalling beetle lifestyles…

The instant the male larva is hatched, it plunges its head back into its mother, and proceeds to devour the contents of her body. Once it has finished consuming its hapless mother, the cannibalistic offspring will go through a series of moults culminating in a winged adult male.

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2 Responses to Sunday Links

  1. jebyrnes says:

    *kicks self for not getting it together to enter*

  2. Next year! And the post-doc category is less competitive than the grad student category! 🙂 I’m going to enter as soon as I have a published paper to submit to the choreographers.

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