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Human-made objects (e.g., buildings with glass surfaces) can reflect horizontally polarized light so strongly that they appear to aquatic insects to be bodies of water. Insects that lay eggs in water are especially attracted to such structures because these insects use horizontal polarization of light off bodies of water to find egg-laying sites. Thus,(More)
The characteristic striped appearance of zebras has provoked much speculation about its function and why the pattern has evolved, but experimental evidence is scarce. Here, we demonstrate that a zebra-striped horse model attracts far fewer horseflies (tabanids) than either homogeneous black, brown, grey or white equivalents. Such biting flies are prevalent(More)
Horseflies (Diptera: Tabanidae) can cause severe problems for humans and livestock because of the continuous annoyance performed and the diseases vectored by the haematophagous females. Therefore, effective horsefly traps are in large demand, especially for stock-breeders. To catch horseflies, several kinds of traps have been developed, many of them(More)
Aquatic insects find their habitat from a remote distance by means of horizontal polarization of light reflected from the water surface. This kind of positive polarotaxis is governed by the horizontal direction of polarization (E-vector). Tabanid flies also detect water by this kind of polarotaxis. The host choice of blood-sucking female tabanids is partly(More)
Host-seeking female tabanid flies, that need mammalian blood for the development of their eggs, can be captured by the classic canopy trap with an elevated shiny black sphere as a luring visual target. The design of more efficient tabanid traps is important for stock-breeders to control tabanids, since these blood-sucking insects can cause severe problems(More)
Trapping flies with sticky paper sheets is an ancient method. The classic flypaper has four typical characteristics: (i) its sticky paper is bright (chamois, light yellow or white), (ii) it is strip-shaped, (iii) it hangs vertically, and (iv) it is positioned high (several metres) above ground level. Such flypapers, however, do not trap horseflies(More)
During blood-sucking, female members of the family Tabanidae transmit pathogens of serious diseases and annoy their host animals so strongly that they cannot graze, thus the health of the hosts is drastically reduced. Consequently, a tabanid-resistant coat with appropriate brightness, colour and pattern is advantageous for the host. Spotty coats are(More)
Using full-sky imaging polarimetry, we measured the celestial distribution of polarization during sunset and sunrise at partial (78% and 72%) and full (100%) moon in the red (650 nm), green (550 nm), and blue (450 nm) parts of the spectrum. We investigated the temporal change of the patterns of degree p and angle α of linear polarization of sunlit and(More)
The strongest known circular polarization of biotic origin is the left-circularly polarized (LCP) light reflected from the metallic shiny exocuticle of certain beetles of the family Scarabaeidae. This phenomenon has been discovered by Michelson in 1911. Although since 1955 it has been known that the human eye perceives a visual illusion when stimulated by(More)