Insects can use plants as 'green phones' for communication with other bugs. A new study now shows that through those same plants insects are also able to leave 'voicemail' messages in the soil. Herbivorous insects store their voicemails via their effects on soil fungi. Researchers from the Netherlands Institute of Ecology (NIOO-KNAW) and Wageningen University (WUR) discovered this unique messaging service in the ragwort plant.Reprint: Nederlands Instituut Voor Ekologie
The journal Ecology Letters will soon publish these results.
|Credit: Olga Kostenko / NIOO-KNAW|
|Credit: Image courtesy of Netherlands Institute of Ecology (NIOO-KNAW)|
The Insect Cage
The NIOO is one of the largest research institutes of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW), with more than 200 employees and students. It is specialized in fundamental and strategic ecological research. Since early 2011 the NIOO is based in a sustainability built research laboratory in Wageningen, the Netherlands.