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The function of zebra stripes

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http://www.nature.com/ncomms/2014/140401/ncomms4535/full/ncomms4535.html

 

$32 to read it there. So, to NBC we go!

 

http://www.nbcnews.com/science/science-news/why-do-zebras-have-stripes-mystery-solved-scientists-say-n68836

"Researchers have looked for novel ways to settle the question ever since Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace started the argument in the 1870s."

 

"All four of the hypotheses listed here, a through d, have been proposed. But a couple of years ago, the bug-repellent idea got a boost when researchers built horse mannequins, painted them in a variety of patterns, coated them with sticky stuff, and found that horseflies seemed to avoid landing on the fake horses that were painted with black and white stripes."

 

"The proposed explanation was that the flies preferred to land on dark surfaces. Such surfaces reflect the kind of polarized light that reminds the flies of the water or mud where they breed. Light surfaces aren't as attractive, but dark-and-light patterns are even worse — perhaps because such patterns confuse the flies' navigational sense."

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