Bespectacled Praying Mantises Surprise Researchers With A New Form Of 3D Vision

In the article by Maitreyi Mantha, she explains that stereo, or 3D, vision is what enables humans to gauge the depth and distance of surrounding objects. The left and right eye capture slightly different images and send them to the brain, which merges them and then calculates proximity of everything in the vicinity. This ability, which requires an intricate network of neurons and lots of processing power, can also be found in some animals, including the only insect– the praying mantis.

The insects cool ability, was particularly intriguing to someone given that its tiny brain has a million neurons. However, humans have 100,000 times more.

Jenny Read and researcher associate Dr. Vivek Nityananda began by creating a custom pair of tiny 3D glasses that were fitted with a blue and green filter, so that the praying mantis could see a different image in each eye. Then, they put the glasses on the insect but it was tricky. It was hard. They needed to do a lot of things in order to put the glasses on the praying mantises eyes. They had to freeze the praying mantis because the praying mantis is in a hunting position so they needed to freeze it just in case they get hurt.

The praying mantis has really cool abilities including having lots of neurons and it is also the only insect with processing power.

Personal Response: I chose this article because I thought insects had very different abilities from other insects so when I saw this article I chose it. The praying mantis has a very cool ability.

Tweet: Amazing! The praying mantis has a very cool ability!

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photo credit: Newcastle university


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