Some insects, such as caterpillars of the peppered moth
(Biston betularia), also match their body colour to the twig color of their food plant; although this colour change is rather slow compared to other animals.
The mottled appearance of the peppered moth
is impressive and unusual, yet it is a regular visitor to our gardens.
and some copycat butterflies owe their color changes to a single gene, two new studies suggest.
In The Peppered Moth
, Drabble explores the idea of a depressive gene--something she returns to in this "oblique memoir" (Telegraph [UK], 4/19/2009).
The peppered moth
, once white with black spots, faced a strange challenge in UK during the industrial revolution.
Perhaps the most classic example of evolution-environment interdependence is that of the colour of the peppered moth
. The study was originally carried out in Britain and then later expanded to Detroit and industrial areas of the USA.
Much like the pale, speckled peppered moth
that turned black during the industrial revolution, the fittest are the species most adaptable to change.
We'll use one of the "textbook examples": the change in the melanic (dark) morph of the peppered moth
He came across a peppered moth
caterpillar, which looks like a twig and attaches itself to trees.
Some try to avoid being seen altogether by using camouflage to blend in against a background, such as the peppered moth
evolving motley wings that blend into tree bark, or stick insects that look like sticks.
Huxley, and Gregor Mendel; the expression "survival of the fittest"; the 'icons' of human evolution--Neanderthal, Java, and Peking Man; evolution of the peppered moth
and the horse; and the history of dinosaurs.
In the now notorious case of the peppered moth
they (Kettlewell and ford) argued that variations in wing colouring were directly linked to species-preservation through a process of self-induced pigmentation, which allowed for greater camouflage (or crypsis) against predators and could therefore account for a proportionate increase or decrease in moth populations.