The "Motor" That Allows a Fly to Flap Its Wings 50 Times a Second

What you're looking at is a 3D visualization of a fly's thorax in action. The 3D animation, which was put together using data pulled from a particle accelerator, offers a glimpse into the inner workings of one of nature's most complex mechanisms. » 3/28/14 4:00pm 3/28/14 4:00pm

Honeybees reveal that evolution is stranger than you ever realized

Darwin's idea of natural selection is simple. Good mutations are passed on, because the animals who have them will survive to reproduce. But how do you pass on those good mutations in honeybee colonies, where most bees are sterile workers who never have babies? A group of researchers decided to find out. » 3/06/14 1:47pm 3/06/14 1:47pm

A Scientist Who Writes Comics About the Secrets of Insect Life

Centuries ago, scientists relied on paintings and illustrations of animals to learn more about their anatomy. Today, that biology-art bond is as strong as ever. This is Carly Tribull, a PhD student studying the evolution of parasitic wasps, who uses her scientific knowledge and artistic talent to create fun comics that … » 1/30/14 6:00pm 1/30/14 6:00pm

Is New York about to be invaded by ice-loving cockroaches?

Last year, workers in New York City's High Line park found some unusual-looking cockroaches they'd never seen before. And now, two biologists have identified the bugs as a species from Japan, pictured here (male on the left, female on the right) which can survive in icy weather that kills typical American roaches. New… » 12/09/13 10:46am 12/09/13 10:46am

New chemical compound could make humans "invisible" to mosquitoes

It's a breakthrough in the fight against disease-carrying mosquitoes. Researchers have found a chemical that disables the part of the insect's brain that smells humans. Future bug repellents based on the compounds could give people an invisibility cloak against the winged pests. We talked to a scientist who worked on… » 12/06/13 2:05pm 12/06/13 2:05pm

If you want to discourage fruit flies, hide your oranges

It seems like fruit flies will target any fruit that's lying around in your kitchen. But when given the choice, these annoying pests actually prefer citrus like oranges, limes, and lemons. And there's a good reason for it, too. » 12/05/13 11:29am 12/05/13 11:29am

The Weirdest and Most Revolting Foods That You Could Actually Eat

One of the great joys of exploring other cultures is seeing how other people eat — but sometimes, you need a strong stomach to deal with what you find. Around the world, people eat fried tarantulas, sheep's heads, duck embryos, and tons of other weird items. Here are the strangest and most revolting food items on… » 10/24/13 4:09pm 10/24/13 4:09pm

Dung beetles don't just run to poop, they actually gallop

Most insects walk forward three legs at a time, a manner of locomotion known as the alternating tripod gait. But scientists have recently learned that there’s at least one insect, the industrious dung beetle, that moves along with a galloping gait — and they’re kinda perplexed as to why. » 10/22/13 9:50am 10/22/13 9:50am

Macrophotographs of insects to melt your face

Whether it's the claws of a carnivorous caterpillar or the clashing mandibles of warring ants, the most fascinating insect-parts are often the smallest – and we love getting a good look. Macrophotography is one of the best ways to do just that, and the USGS Bee Inventory and Monitoring Lab's collection offers some of… » 9/11/13 9:00am 9/11/13 9:00am

Spider webs are literally attracted to some insects

Spider webs are well known to be excellent insect — and sometimes bird — catchers due to their mechanical strength, stickiness and numerous other properties. But research now shows that the webs of some spiders have an additional, hidden ability: Essentially, they can reach out and grab free-falling insects that have… » 7/04/13 3:00pm 7/04/13 3:00pm

Weekend Nightmare Fuel: The Biggest Crawling Animals on Earth

There's just something shiver-inducing about crawling animals like insects, arachnids and centipedes. And the bigger they are, the creepier they get. So, just to start your weekend off right, here are some of the world's biggest creepy crawlies. » 6/28/13 5:00pm 6/28/13 5:00pm

Bee colonies with promiscuous queens have a better chance of survival

Right now, bee colonies are suffering dramatic die-offs. This has implications for food security, since we need bees to fertilize a lot of our staple fruit crops, including apples. Now a new scientific study suggests one way to ensure the health of a hive is to make sure its queen is promiscuous. » 6/27/13 2:21pm 6/27/13 2:21pm