Technical Comments

Comment on “Floral Iridescence, Produced by Diffractive Optics, Acts As a Cue for Animal Pollinators”

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Science  28 Aug 2009:
Vol. 325, Issue 5944, pp. 1072
DOI: 10.1126/science.1173324

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Whitney et al. (Reports, 2 January 2009, p. 130) investigated the mechanism of iridescence in hibiscus and tulip flowers and suggested that bumblebees are able to use this iridescence as a pollination cue. However, their study failed to isolate iridescence from other coincident visual cues, leaving open questions regarding the importance of iridescent stimuli in foraging-based associative learning in bumblebees.

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