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Зачем учёные надели костюм зебры на обычную лошадь? Во имя науки!

В 1952 году математик Алан Тьюринг доказал, что пятна и полосы на телах зебр, тигров и леопардов появляются из-за разной скорости распространения химических веществ по эмбриону. Однако, ученые до сих пор не могут понять, для чего именно этим животным нужны полосы. Предполагалось, что они помогают зебрам маскироваться от хищников и регулировать температуру тела, однако у исследователей из Университетов Калифорнии и Бристоля появилась более реалистичная теория. Они провели эксперимент, доказавший, что полосы на теле зебр защищают их от опасных насекомых.

Зачем учёные надели костюм зебры на обычную лошадь? Во имя науки!

Эксперимент проводился в частной конюшне города Дандри. Исследователи вывели несколько зебр и лошадей разной масти на улицу, причем для чистоты эксперимента нарядили одну обычную лошадь в полосатый наряд. Также они распылили на нее вещество, которое испускает запах зебры. При помощи нескольких видеокамер ученые были намерены зафиксировать реакцию насекомых на обычных и полосатых лошадей.

Наблюдения показали, что наличие полосок на теле никак не отражается на поведении кусающихся слепней. Однако, насекомые могли легко приземлиться на тела обычных лошадей и укусить их, тогда как на тела зебр они падали с увеличенной скоростью и не успевали зацепиться. Из этого ученые сделали вывод, что полосатая текстура эффективно обманывает зрение насекомых, и защита — это одна из ее главных функций.

Зачем учёные надели костюм зебры на обычную лошадь? Во имя науки!

В ходе эксперимента исследователи также проследили за реакцией лошадей и зебр. Выяснилось, что при виде насекомых зебры активнее пытаются от них убежать. Предполагается, что это связано с тем, что зебры гораздо чаще сталкиваются с переносчиками опасных заболеваний, чем обычные лошади.

А к какому из предположений насчет функции полос на теле зебр придерживаетесь вы? Свой вариант пишите в комментариях, а обсудить новость подробнее можно в нашем Telegram-чате.

Источник: hi-news.ru

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