Rainforest katydids evolved mammal-like ears | Science News

Support Science Journalism

Science News is a nonprofit.

Support us by subscribing now.


Rainforest katydids evolved mammal-like ears

Tiny organs below insect’s knees have a structure similar to those in humans

3:49pm, November 15, 2012

A rainforest katydid doesn’t talk like a mammal, or walk like a mammal, but it does hear with the first mammal-like, three-stage sound-sensing system known outside vertebrates.

“The beauty about the katydid ear is that it does the same job in a way that is much simpler,” says sensory biologist Daniel Robert of the University of Bristol in England. And of interest to researchers designing miniature hearing devices, the Copiphora gorgonensis katydid ear is smaller than a rice grain.

When mammals hear a sound, airborne pressure waves thump against the eardrum and send ripples through a liquid-filled chamber

This article is only available to Science News subscribers. Already a subscriber? Log in now.
Or subscribe today for full access.

Get Science News headlines by e-mail.

More from Science News

From the Nature Index Paid Content