Creature Feature XVII: “Seeing” with Sound in Bats and Wasps

My latest piece for the Creature Feature column is on two creatures I’ve seen recently on the University of Florida campus, the large colony of Mexican Free Tailed Bats and a single Megarhyssa wasp. Both rely on sensing sound in interesting ways, for survival and reproduction.

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I wanted to write more about the process by which these wasps locate the wood-boring insects in which they lay their eggs, but couldn’t really find too much information. But thanks to Dr. Laura Timms, who shared her expertise with me, I now know a lot more about this–it’s complicated, and involves both sensing both chemicals and sounds, and will be the subject of a future blogpost. In the meanwhile, check out these fantastic videos of a Megarhyssa wasp laying her eggs.

Finally, here are the references that my piece is based on:

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