Fossil record analysis hints at evolutionary origins of insects’ structural colours, Scienmag, 15 April 2020

Scienmag reported on a study by researchers from Yale-NUS College and University College Cork (UCC) published in Biology Letters, which found that the wing cases of the fossil weevils contained preserved photonic ‘diamonds’, one of the many types of crystal-like nanoscopic structures that interacts with light to produce some of the brightest and purest colours in nature. Led by Yale-NUS Assistant Professor of Science (Life Sciences) Vinod Kumar Saranathan and UCC paleobiologists Drs Luke McDonald and Maria McNamara, the study’s findings suggest that the weevils’ colours evolved initially for camouflage amongst their leafy background, before diversifying for other functions such as to signal potential mates or deter predators.

The study was also carried in online news outlets Phys Org, Bio Engineer, Science Codex and IFL Science.

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