Aposematism


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Related to Aposematism: Voltinism, Mullerian mimicry

Aposematism

 

(also warning coloration and form), one of the types of protective coloration and form in animals. Aposematic coloration, which contrasts with the animal’s background, is demonstrated suddenly in response to danger and is usually combined with a threatening pose and sounds.

The back wings of certain moths of the family Sphingidae and the genus Noctuidae, as well as cicadas, locusts, and mantises, have eyelike spots or bright bands. Normally these insects are not noticeable, owing to cryptic coloration. When an enemy approaches, however, they open their back wings and unexpectedly reveal their bright coloring, which frightens off the predator. Caterpillars of the family Sphingidae assume a threatening pose, raising the front portion of the body slightly and inflating the thorax, on which eyelike spots protrude in some species. Octopuses, agamas, and chameleons assume a threatening pose and acquire vivid coloration; many reptiles also hiss. The death’s-head moth emits a sharp squeak by releasing air from its foregut.

Aposematism protects animals from predators and gives them an advantage in the struggle for life.

I. KH. SHAROVA

References in periodicals archive ?
Warning displays in spiny animals: one (more) evolutionary route to aposematism.
Mimetism must not be confused with aposematism as a whole, as descibed above.
Density-dependent aposematism in the desert locust.
1999)--for which the presence of food-derived, feeding-deterrent terpenes in the MDFs underlying aposematism has been demonstrated (Cimino et al, 1982; Avila et al.
In view of the monophyletic origin of this group of sympatric Hypselodoris nudibranchs, the similar color pattern and their aposematism may have been inherited from their common ancestor and therefore not the result of convergent evolution.
Aposematism and gregariousness: the combined effect of group size and coloration on signal repellence.
In addition, the existence of many solitary aposematic species suggests that aposematism can evolve through individual selection (Jarvi et al.
Aposematism and synergistic selection in marine gastropods.
549) or in other words, "because aposematism is so widespread" (Pagel 1991).
Using a statistical test, one would ask whether aposematism is more likely to evolve in solitary than in gregarious species, that is, if the state solitariness somehow influences the evolution of aposematism.
The observed coincidence in prey animals between conspicuousness and unpalatability may not be due to aposematism.
Adaptive coloration, antipredator mechanisms, aposematism, elapid snakes, mimicry, vertebrates.