Apple oak gall (Amphibolips confluenta or Amphibolips quercusinanis), backlit to show leaf-like venation. Second photograph is a cross section showing where the wasp larva develops. I’d love to know what the spotting does, if anything.
Cynipid wasps love oaks for some reason — over 3/4 of the 1300 species use Quercus as host. People argue about why that’s the case (e.g., Ronquist et al. 2015). Even Alfred Kinsey the sexologist weighed in, back in the days when he was obsessed with gall wasps.
Posted in Photography, Science
Tagged Amphibolips confluenta, Amphibolips quercusinanis, apple oak gall, coevolution, cynipid, cynipidae, defense, development, gallwasp, glands, hymenoptera, insect, leaf, meristematic stimulation, plant, quercus, Quercus bicolor, round, secretion, spots, wasp, yellow
Brown anole displaying its dewlap. Not sure whether this was a male or female, though I’m sure anyone familiar with brown anoles would know instantly. Males supposedly have bigger dewlaps and display them longer … but I only saw this one individual. My guess is that it’s a he. For a great overview of dewlaps, please see Anole Annals. Photograph from Key Largo, Florida, March 2014.
Also, sure wish more science fiction movies would equip aliens with these. Missed opportunity for surprise and hilarity.
Posted in Biology, Education, Photography, Science
Tagged Anolis sagrei, Bahaman anole, brown, brown anole, competition, Cuba, dewlap, dimorphism, female, Florida, introduced, invasive, Key Largo, lizard, male, Polychrotidae, red, reptile, sexual selection, spots, Squamata, yellow