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5 December 2013 11:26 am ,
Vol. 342 ,
Researchers have been hot on the trail of the elusive Denisovans, a type of ancient human known only by their DNA and...
Thousands of scientists in the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS) are about to lose their jobs as a result of the...
Dyslexia, a learning disability that hinders reading, hasn't been associated with deficits in vision, hearing, or...
Exotic, elusive, and dangerous, snakes have fascinated humankind for millennia. They can be hard to find, yet their...
Researchers have sequenced and analyzed the first two snake genomes, which represent two evolutionary extremes. The...
Snake venoms are remarkably complex mixtures that can stun or kill prey within minutes. But more and more researchers...
At age 30, Dutch biologist Freek Vonk has built up a respectable career as a snake scientist. But in his home country,...
Since arriving on the island of Guam in the 1940s, the brown tree snake ( Boiga irregularis ) has extirpated native...
- 5 December 2013 11:26 am , Vol. 342 , #6163
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ScienceShot: Wasps Spot Familiar Faces
1 December 2011 2:00 pm
Wasps can recognize faces much like many apes do, researchers report online today in Science. The team taught paper wasps (Polistes fuscatus), whose faces sport distinctive brown and creamy markings, to associate certain wasp mugshots with safety and others with danger in an electrified maze. The buzzers flew to safety quicker and with fewer errors when a kind face led the way, the team found. Closely related, but much less social, wasp species couldn't achieve that same feat of recognition. Still, the paper wasps weren't flawless. When the team plucked the antennae off the heads of photographed bugs, the ability of the wasps to distinguish one insect from another dropped—as if the critters had been missing a nose.
See more ScienceShots.