Masterful Mimics of the Natural World [EDITED BY SIDDHARTH SIGH]

Bugs that look like twigs? Mantises that look like dead leaves? Moths with snake heads for wings? What’s going on here?

When it comes to some of the most remarkable ways creatures have found to survive, the tactics of camouflage and mimicry that the insect and arachnid worlds use put the rest of the animal kingdom to shame.

Image: leaf grasshopper insect mimic
Source: Pixabay

There are species of spiders, flys, bees, moths, and beetles that have evolved ways of mimicking other parts of the natural world; all in the name of survival. But how is it that a moth can even come to look like a piece of bird poop? Or a spider like an ant?

Unlike, say, the octopus, who has evolved ways to change their looks to blend with the environment, these arachnids and insects aren’t choosing to look like other things; it’s been through the slow process of evolution, generation by generation, that these species evolved to look the way they do.

To get one of the best explanations we’ve ever heard on how this all happens, we turn to this video from NPR’s YouTube science channel, Skunk Bear!

Via: Skunk Bear 1
These imposters of the animal kingdom are some of the most astounding examples of how evolution has enabled creatures to inhabit some of the most unique places on the planet!

One of my personal favorite amazing insects practicing mimicry has to be the orchid mantis.
These remarkable little friends exhibit a form of mimicry called aggressive mimicry, and thankfully, we wrote an article all about them. (This article also talks about a few other forms of camouflage and mimicry used by the natural world. So, if you’re interested in diving deeper into the subject, this one’s for you.)

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