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SSS 2009-02-06

时间:2010-05-17 03:18来源:互联网 提供网友:木渐浅。   字体: [ ]
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    (单词翻译:双击或拖选)

This is Scientific American's 60-Second Science. I'm Karen Hopkin. This will just take a minute.

It’s good to be the Queen. You get fed and cared for and generally treated like royalty1. But if you’re a blue butterfly caterpillar2, you can get the same benefits by just pretending to be queen. Because these crafty3 caterpillars4 trick ants into feeding them—by mimicking5 the sound of their queen.

Ants are social creatures whose colonies contain a queen ant, and hordes6 of worker ants who feed the queen and take care of all her young. Blue butterfly caterpillars have come up with clever ways to exploit that system. These parasitic7 caterpillars take up residence in the nests of red ants. And they mooch free meals in part by waggling their heads to beg for food like all the other ant grubs.

But that’s not all. Scientists using sophisticated recording8 equipment were able to listen to the caterpillars chatter9. And found that the interlopers imitated the sounds of an adult queen. The report’s in the February 6th issue of the journal Science.

The reason it’s better to be mistaken for royalty and not just some other grub is that in times of stress, ants will even feed their young to the queen. So if it’s eat or be eaten, caterpillars are clearly making the sound choice.

 

Thanks for the minute for Scientific American's 60-Second Science. I'm Karen Hopkin.

 


点击收听单词发音收听单词发音  

1 royalty iX6xN     
n.皇家,皇族
参考例句:
  • She claims to be descended from royalty.她声称她是皇室后裔。
  • I waited on tables,and even catered to royalty at the Royal Albert Hall.我做过服务生, 甚至在皇家阿伯特大厅侍奉过皇室的人。
2 caterpillar ir5zf     
n.毛虫,蝴蝶的幼虫
参考例句:
  • A butterfly is produced by metamorphosis from a caterpillar.蝴蝶是由毛虫脱胎变成的。
  • A caterpillar must pass through the cocoon stage to become a butterfly.毛毛虫必须经过茧的阶段才能变成蝴蝶。
3 crafty qzWxC     
adj.狡猾的,诡诈的
参考例句:
  • He admired the old man for his crafty plan.他敬佩老者的神机妙算。
  • He was an accomplished politician and a crafty autocrat.他是个有造诣的政治家,也是个狡黠的独裁者。
4 caterpillars 7673bc2d84c4c7cba4a0eaec866310f4     
n.毛虫( caterpillar的名词复数 );履带
参考例句:
  • Caterpillars eat the young leaves of this plant. 毛毛虫吃这种植物的嫩叶。
  • Caterpillars change into butterflies or moths. 毛虫能变成蝴蝶或蛾子。 来自辞典例句
5 mimicking ac830827d20b6bf079d24a8a6d4a02ed     
v.(尤指为了逗乐而)模仿( mimic的现在分词 );酷似
参考例句:
  • She's always mimicking the teachers. 她总喜欢模仿老师的言谈举止。
  • The boy made us all laugh by mimicking the teacher's voice. 这男孩模仿老师的声音,逗得我们大家都笑了。 来自辞典例句
6 hordes 8694e53bd6abdd0ad8c42fc6ee70f06f     
n.移动着的一大群( horde的名词复数 );部落
参考例句:
  • There are always hordes of tourists here in the summer. 夏天这里总有成群结队的游客。
  • Hordes of journalists jostled for position outside the conference hall. 大群记者在会堂外争抢位置。 来自《简明英汉词典》
7 parasitic 7Lbxx     
adj.寄生的
参考例句:
  • Will global warming mean the spread of tropical parasitic diseases?全球变暖是否意味着热带寄生虫病会蔓延呢?
  • By definition,this way of life is parasitic.从其含义来说,这是种寄生虫的生活方式。
8 recording UktzJj     
n.录音,记录
参考例句:
  • How long will the recording of the song take?录下这首歌得花多少时间?
  • I want to play you a recording of the rehearsal.我想给你放一下彩排的录像。
9 chatter BUfyN     
vi./n.喋喋不休;短促尖叫;(牙齿)打战
参考例句:
  • Her continuous chatter vexes me.她的喋喋不休使我烦透了。
  • I've had enough of their continual chatter.我已厌烦了他们喋喋不休的闲谈。
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