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COCKROACHES ACCUMULATE LIGHT OVER TIME SO THEY CAN SEE IN THE DARK

Cockroaches

COCKROACHES ACCUMULATE LIGHT OVER TIME SO THEY CAN SEE IN THE DARK

 

Most people in the Las Vegas valley find cockroaches to be one of the most repulsive pests – from Henderson to Summerlin people cringe when they see a cockroach running on the floor of their home.

 

Cockroaches could inspire superheroes if they weren't so creepy. Some species can hold their breath for as long as 40 minutes. Others can survive blasts of strong radiation, subsist on paper and dried glue, or live for weeks without a head. Recently researchers discovered another superpower: the nocturnal creatures can see in near–pitch black by pooling light signals over time, like time-lapse photography.

 

Recently scientists in Finland put about 30 American cockroaches through virtual-reality experiments to test their night vision. They put each roach on a tracking ball surrounded by a spherical screen. Under increasingly dark conditions, the researchers projected images of black-and-white moving stripes onto the screen, triggering a reflex that made the roaches walk toward the stripes.

 

The scientists also harmlessly inserted a recording microelectrode into one of the cockroaches' nearly 360-degree compound eyes to record the electric blips triggered in the photoreceptor cells by photons, or particles of light. In conditions equivalent to a moonless night, the cockroach eye absorbed one photon every 10 seconds.

 

Usually such conditions are too dim for vision. “That's an amazingly small amount of photons,” says Matti Weckström, a biophysicist who carried out the experiments. But the roaches could see just fine.” Only a few other species, including a nocturnal bee and a dung beetle, are known to pool light signals. If researchers could figure out how these insects do it, Weckström says, “They might be able to use that insight to improve existing night-vision technologies.”

 

GLOBAL PEST SERVICES in Las Vegas is a licensed pest control company that is qualified to handle all your pest elimination needs Call our office at 702-657-0091 or go to our web site- to speak with us for all your pest control needs.  Get a quote now!

 

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