Still moar mimicy

I am off to Augusta today to discuss the (in)compatibility between science and faith. If you’re there and have a book, don’t forget the secret word.

In the meantime, reader George sent me a superb case of mimicry, posted on Neatorama’s Facebook page.

I’ll leave it to the readers to identify it:

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25 Comments

  1. mrclaw69
    Posted February 4, 2013 at 7:07 am | Permalink

    Looks like a leaf mantis to me. Probably one of the rhombodera…

  2. dorusone
    Posted February 4, 2013 at 7:09 am | Permalink

    It is a Phyllium giganteum

    • dorusone
      Posted February 5, 2013 at 4:55 am | Permalink

      google images cannot lie ;)

  3. Reginald Selkirk
    Posted February 4, 2013 at 7:10 am | Permalink

    a superb case of mimicry…

    Indeed. That looks just exactly like a human hand!

  4. marycanada FCD
    Posted February 4, 2013 at 7:18 am | Permalink

    Mind-blowing!

  5. marycanada FCD
    Posted February 4, 2013 at 7:26 am | Permalink

    Phyllium bioculatum

  6. Matt Bowman
    Posted February 4, 2013 at 7:33 am | Permalink

    I would tear that up and put it on my pasta.

    • John Scanlon, FCD
      Posted February 4, 2013 at 9:40 pm | Permalink

      All flesh is herb, mon.

    • neil
      Posted February 4, 2013 at 10:31 pm | Permalink

      Or roll it and smoke it.

  7. W.Benson
    Posted February 4, 2013 at 7:42 am | Permalink

    Of course parsimony demands assuming that random mutation and genetic drift are the cause of this monstrosity. Molecular biologists study this. They wear white lab coats and must be right. To say colors provide camouflage without knowing anything about developmental genetics, molecular biology, or cladistics is mere ignorant dogmatic adaptationism. Remember, appearances deceive.

    • Hempenstein
      Posted February 4, 2013 at 8:14 am | Permalink

      Monstrosity? That’s pretty arrogant. And they were described centuries before the first synthesis of an organic molecule, let alone any understanding of DNA. Guess where they were found? Among leaves.

      • Posted February 4, 2013 at 10:10 am | Permalink

        It’s a joke! He’s parodying neutralists, not supporting them.

        • Diane G.
          Posted February 4, 2013 at 1:01 pm | Permalink

          And doing so effectively.

        • whyevolutionistrue
          Posted February 4, 2013 at 7:56 pm | Permalink

          I think he’s a sock puppet of Larry Moran :-)

        • Hempenstein
          Posted February 4, 2013 at 9:48 pm | Permalink

          Sounded like phosphorous under a new alias to me.

  8. Posted February 4, 2013 at 11:49 am | Permalink

    this is a gorgeous case of mimicry; i have never seen a leaf mimic, with multiple smaller leaves; note what appear to be eyespots on the leaves on the first pair of legs; it would give the insect the extra protection of subliminally (or even consciously) frightening a would-be predator; the never-ending beauty of the natural world and the never-ending complexity of good old deceit and self-deception

  9. krzysztof1
    Posted February 4, 2013 at 12:51 pm | Permalink

    I’d say the person holding the critter does some digging around in plants. There’s a ragged cut on the middle finger which could have been caused by something like a thorn or sawgrass.

    • krzysztof1
      Posted February 4, 2013 at 12:54 pm | Permalink

      OOPS! That’s not a cut–it’s an insect foot! Mea culpa.

  10. krzysztof1
    Posted February 4, 2013 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

    I do like the simulation of black leaf-rot around the edges. Nice touch.

  11. Kevin Alexander
    Posted February 4, 2013 at 3:59 pm | Permalink

    Now we know how herbivores became carnivores.
    ‘That’s a tasty looking leaf!’ Nom, nom, ‘Shit! That’s GOOD!’

    Evolution is not so hard to ‘esplain.

  12. Sam Salerno
    Posted February 4, 2013 at 8:53 pm | Permalink

    Looks like an Eophyllium. But those are extinct. But definitely part of the Phylliidae family.
    I’m going with Phyllium giganteum also.

  13. Posted February 5, 2013 at 1:27 am | Permalink

    Cool, it’s a leaf mimicking a mantis!

  14. Marella
    Posted February 7, 2013 at 4:22 am | Permalink

    Amazing.


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