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Animal Camouflage Facts
Almost every animal has a good reason to hide. Going undetected makes it easier to catch food – and easier to avoid becoming someone else’s. In any species, the individuals that stand out the most will be the first to be eaten and the last to catch their own dinner, and so natural selection picks the ones with the best camouflage.
There are several different kinds of camouflage. The most basic is to hide under a rock, or in sand or leaves. This is sometimes called ‘crypsis’, and some animals will incorporate bits of their environment on their bodies to improve the effect. Three-toed sloths have algae growing in their fur, which gives them a dark green hue that helps them hide among the trees. Coral crabs deliberately attach young polyps to their shells so they resemble part of the reef.
The next step is to change your own body colouration. Mammals have a colour palette restricted to white, black, brown and yellow, but fish, amphibians, reptiles and birds can all produce a vivid array of greens and bright red. Red might not seem like a great colour for camouflage, but lots of seaweed and corals are red, and in fact many sea creatures obtain the red pigment for their bodies by eating the corals and seaweed that they hide among.
Camouflage is a show performed for a few specific observers. Most mammals see in black and white, or only two colours. Primates see three primary colours while birds see four. Insects can see well into the ultraviolet part of the spectrum and many snakes can sense infrared. Choosing the right camouflage is about exploiting the weaknesses in your target’s visual system. Even if your colour is a very close match to your surroundings, your outline can still give you away. One of the earliest parts of the brain to evolve was concerned with recognizing the edges of things, and most animals still have a dedicated outline recognition brain region. Good camouflage uses contrasting patterns of light and dark, or different colours. These trick the outline recognition system so that it mentally carves up your shape into smaller, irregular blocks. In some environments, there is so little to hide behind that this ‘dazzle’ camouflage is all you have. The Royal Navy used this technique in World War I to make it hard to judge the speed and heading of battleships on the featureless ocean. But the orca, or killer whale, beat them to it by several million years. The bright patches of white on a black body disrupt its outline so that it is not immediately recognised as a threat. Zebras use the same technique, but this time the entire herd merges into one huge zebra that is much more intimidating and confusing to lions and cheetahs.
Sometimes, a purely visual camouflage isn’t enough. Procrypsis is the technique of camouflaging your movement. Predators are acutely sensitive to movement, but a typical forest is a whirl of activity and they must quickly tune out the background motions of wind, water.
Cover is the utilization of any blend of materials, shading, or light for camouflage, either by making creatures or questions hard to see (crypsis), or by masking them as something else (mimesis). Samples incorporate the panther's spotted coat, the battledress of an advanced officer, and the leaf-copy katydid's wings.
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This documentary movies taken by national geographic and some other movies taken by bbc documentary channel, You can also read: Camouflage,Documentary,documentaries,national geographic,bbc documentary.
Amazing Camouflage Creature under the sea....