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Saturday, November 19, 2022

Nature's marvel - Pon vandu !! - Jewel box bug !!

முன்ன ஒரு காலத்துல மக்கள் தாங்கள் உடுத்திய துணிமணிகளை ! கல்லில் அடித்து அழுக்கு போக தோய்த்து வந்தனர்.  வாய்க்கால்கள், ஆறுகள், குளங்கள், கண்மாய், ஏரிகள், போன்ற நீர்நிலைகள்  அருகிலும், வீட்டு புழக்கடையில் ஒரு பெரிய அகலமான கல் இருக்கும்.  துணிகளை நன்றாக நனைத்து, சோப்பு போட்டு கல்லில் அடித்து துவைப்பார்கள் !!    அந்த காலங்களில்  ரேடியோவில் கேட்ட ஒரு விளம்பரம் - "பொன் வண்டு  பார் சோப்பு"  !!


பொன் வண்டு என்ற பொன்னாள்பூச்சி -(Sternocera) பூச்சி தொகுதியில் (Class Insecta), சேர்ந்த வண்டு வகைகளாகும். இவற்றின் உடலின் மேற்புற ஓட்டுப்பகுதி உலோகத்தைப் போல் மின்னும் தன்மை கொண்டதால் தமிழில் இந்தப் பெயர் கொண்டு அழைக்கப்படுகின்றன.  இவ்வகை வண்டுகள் பொதுவாக தாவரவுண்ணிகளாகும்.  இந்தப் பூச்சியை பொன் வண்டு (Jewel Beetle) என்று தவறாக நினைத்திருப்போம். இது பொன் வண்டு அல்ல. இது பொன் பச்சைப் பூச்சி (Jewel Bug - Chrysocoris stolli). இரண்டுக்கும் வேறுபாடு இருக்கிறது.!!! 

Nature teaches us many lessons, in many perspectives including  designing materials and inspiring  new applications or approaches.  One can read, understand the evolution of living things on how  they are adaptive, responsive to their surroundings, as living organisms  have evolved to solve a lot of these problems in materials complexity.  

Hemiptera (from Ancient Greek hemipterus 'half-winged') is an order of insects, commonly called true bugs, comprising over 80,000 species within groups such as the cicadas, aphids, planthoppers, leafhoppers, assassin bugs, bed bugs, and shield bugs.  Entomologists reserve the term bug for Hemiptera or Heteroptera,  which does not include insects of other orders such as ants, bees, beetles, or butterflies.   

Nature-inspired materials are materials that have some component that has been inspired or derived from living organisms, in their form, function, or design. The idea behind bio-inspired or nature-inspired materials is that living organisms and nature have had billions of years to evolve and test different materials and different forms and functions. We can benefit from that as scientists by looking at how nature has solved its problems and that can provide some potential solutions to our engineering and design challenges. That’s the motivation behind looking at nature!  

Scutelleridae is a family of true bugs. They are commonly known as jewel bugs or metallic shield bugs due to their often brilliant coloration. They are also known as shield-backed bugs due to the enlargement of the thoracic scutellum into a continuous shield over the abdomen and wings.  Jewel bugs are small to medium-sized oval-shaped bugs with a body length averaging at 5 to 20 mm (0.20 to 0.79 in).  Despite their resemblance to beetles, jewel bugs are hemipterans or true bugs.   

A new study from Monash University has revealed that nearly half of all insects that are native to the Southern Ocean Islands have become flightless over time. On some of these remote islands, almost all of the insects have lost the ability to fly. When the researchers investigated the potential factors driving this flightlessness, they confirmed a 160-year-old theory by Charles Darwin that flightlessness evolved in response to wind.  “Of course, Charles Darwin knew about this wing loss habit of island insects,” said study lead author and PhD candidate Rachel Leihy. Darwin’s position was deceptively simple. If you fly, you get blown out to sea. Those left on land to produce the next generation are those most reluctant to fly, and eventually evolution does the rest.  

Many scientists, had  questioned Darwin’s theory on flightlessness and simply believed that he got it wrong. However, most of these debates have overlooked the sub-Antarctic islands where flightlessness is evolving the most rapidly, and these are some of the windiest places on Earth. “If Darwin really got it wrong, then wind would not in any way explain why so many insects have lost their ability to fly on these islands,” said Leihy. The researchers set out to analyze every idea that has been proposed to explain flight loss among insects. “The outcomes redirect attention to Darwin’s wind hypothesis. “It’s remarkable that after 160 years, Darwin’s ideas continue to bring insight to ecology,” said Leihy.


Not intended to be any Science related post .. ..simple thoughts, collating of some articles after photographing this tiny insect – green to look at – has some blueline running across with some crimson coating in legs! – a marvel of nature – this beetle, no a bug !!


With regards – S.Sampathkumar



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