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Clever cockroach uses bioluminescence for mimicry, may already be extinct

Anonymous Coward writes | about 2 years ago

Science 0

An anonymous reader writes "Lucihormetica luckae (cockroach) was found to be the first land-based species we know about that uses bioluminescence for defensive mimicry. The bioluminescence takes the form of three spots (two large, one small) on the back of the cockroach. Each is filled with bacteria that glows when exposed to fluorescent light. The effect is intensified by the fact the spots are covered by a reflective surface, making them act in similar to headlights.

When viewed under the right lighting conditions the cockroach actually takes on the look of a Jawa from Star Wars and almost completely hides its own body in light.

Unfortunately, we may never know any more about Lucihormetica luckae. It was only ever found in Ecuador living in a very remote location around the Tungurahua volcano. After it erupted in 2010 no one has yet to come into contact with the cockroach again, suggesting it may now be extinct due to that natural event."

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