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Researchers gain focus on a bug with bifocals
Date:8/23/2010

e larvae that was studied typically live in creeks and streams around Arizona and the western United States. It's classified as a holometabolous insect the group of insects that morph into something completely different from how they originated like the caterpillar/moth or the maggot/fly. The larvae of these beetles have the bifocal lens. They lose these intricate lenses when they become a beetle.

Researchers Couldn't Believe Their Eyes

As the researchers zeroed in on how the multiple eyes of this insect worked, they did even more research to try to disprove what they saw. They first used a microscope to look through the lenses of the two eyes detailed in the research article. They saw how the lens could make a second image grow sharper something that could only happen with a bifocal. "It was my first research project, and I seriously thought I made a mistake, and then we did additional research to try to kill the hypothesis," says Stowasser.

However, their findings were confirmed with more research in addition to observing the operation of the lens and the two focal planes via a microscope. They saw the bifocal again when they used a method to project a narrow light beam through the lens. "Our findings can only be explained by a truly bifocal lens," write the researchers.


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Contact: Dawn Fuller
dawn.fuller@uc.edu
513-556-1823
University of Cincinnati
Source:Eurekalert

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