Sunday Sketch: Holy Halitosis, Spiderman!

Caterpillars of the tobacco hornworm (Manduca sexta), as the name suggests, specialize on eating nicotine containing plants. Normally, nicotine is an effective plant defense against herbivores as it poisons various animals by interrupting neural mechanisms associated with muscle movement. Tobacco hornworms, however, can handle doses of nicotine that are lethal to herbivores that do not…

Sunday Sketch: Spider Emojis

The Hawaiian happy face spider (Theridion grallator) is endemic to the Hawaiian archipelago. Small (< 5 mm) and fairly inconspicuous despite their unique coloration, happy face spiders live on the underside of leaves on the islands of Oʻahu, Molokaʻi, Maui, and Hawaiʻi. The spiders are polymorphic, showing individual variation in the pattern and color of…

Animal Myths: LAND

Welcome back to our Animal Myth series, where we strive to debunk common animal misconceptions. In this post, we focus on animals that share our most familiar habitat: land. Note: If you haven’t already, check out the first Animal Myths post on creatures of the sky here! 1. Camels use their humps to store water While this “fact” isn’t entirely true, it…