Hey, a new way of measuring speed!rjlittlefield wrote: since their full running speed is something like 50 DOF's per second.
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Yeah, "DOF's per second" just sort of burst into my brain and struck me as being a nice way to express the difficulty. At first, I was thinking "body-lengths per second", but that really doesn't capture why springtails are hard, but football players are easy. I guess we'll see if it catches on.Cyclops wrote:Hey, a new way of measuring speed!rjlittlefield wrote: since their full running speed is something like 50 DOF's per second.
Hey, I ran into an interesting article about springtails last night. It's in Science News (Sept 2, 2006, pg 148), titled "Moss Express / Insects and mites tote mosses' sperm". (On the cover, it's "moss sexposé".) They say there's a full paper by Cronberg et.al. in Sept. 1 Science.
Anyway, quoting from the intro of the Science News article,
The accompanying photograph of a springtail is captioned "mosses' best friend In a process similar to pollination among flowering plants, a tiny insect called a springtail can carry moss sperm from male to female tufts of moss."Mosses don't package their male gametes in pollen, as flowers do, but rely instead on swimming sperm. Textbooks state that moss sperm need to swim or splash to a female moss tuft. However, an experiment with a common moss species shows that sperm hitchike on mites and tiny insects... Those couriers aren't just scuttling around randomly. In lab tests, they preferred visiting fertile moss tufts instead of sterile ones.