- Not Exactly Rocket Science
Two-Faced Insect is Both Sheep and Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing
I’m laughing because I’m reading a paper about an aphid that’s occasionally a vampire—more on this later—and the caption for Figure 1 begins: “Simplified diagram of the biannual life cycle of P. Cimiciformis”. And this is Figure 1:
This is the absurdly complicated life cycle of the aphid Paracletus cimiciformis which includes at least 9 different bodies (or morphs), two host plants, and at least two full years. Bear in mind that aside from one tiny part of the cycle (bottom-left in the diagram), this creature reproduces asexually—the females give birth to genetically identical clones of themselves, without any need for males.
Let’s start at the top-left. In summer, the aphids live on the terebinth tree, where they trigger the