Friday, September 17, 2010

Making oneself invisible - by Camouflage!

The word, camouflage was introduced to me when I joined N.C.C. (National Cadet Corps) at school. Then the ways of camouflaging practiced in battlefield were taught. Later I learned that animals also practice this camouflaging to evade a predator attack. Animals change their colors similar to that of their surrounding environment to become invisible!

For example, take Toads (Bufo fowleri) that have their skin color matching to that of the red soil that they live. Chameleon changes its color for showing its mood also apart from using it for preying upon!

Yet some other animals have their fur coat's color changed; Arctic Fox and Ermine have white coats in winter and brown in summer. Other animals have their bodies resembling the materials on which they inhabit: Stick insects (Stick-bugs) resemble sticks; Dead Leaf butterflies (Kallima inachus) resemble dead leaves. Zebra and Tiger have striping on them that deceive zebra's predator, the lion and tiger's prey, the deer respectively!
With this wonder play of Nature, the camouflage, the living animals blend and merge with the inanimate matters, become invisible and play 'hide and seek'!

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