Attention Deficit Disorder Prosthetic Memory Program

Aggressive Mimicry

ADDPMP248
Aggressive Mimicry - © Attention Deficit Disorder Prosthetic Memory Program
Aggressive Mimicry - © Attention Deficit Disorder Prosthetic Memory Program
Aggressive Mimicry - © Attention Deficit Disorder Prosthetic Memory Program
Aggressive Mimicry - © Attention Deficit Disorder Prosthetic Memory Program

Aggressive mimicry is a form of mimicry in which predators, parasites or parasitoids share similar signals, using a harmless model, allowing them to avoid being correctly identified by their prey or host. Zoologists have repeatedly compared this strategy to a wolf in sheep’s clothing. In its broadest sense, aggressive mimicry could include various types of exploitation, as when an orchid exploits a male insect by mimicking a sexually receptive female (see pseudocopulation), but will here be restricted to forms of exploitation involving feeding. An alternative term Peckhamian mimicry (after George and Elizabeth Peckham) has been suggested, but is seldom used. The metaphor of a wolf in sheep’s clothing can be used as an analogy, but with the caveat that mimics are not intentionally deceiving their prey. For example, indigenous Australians who dress up as and imitate kangaroos when hunting would not be considered aggressive mimics, nor would a human angler, though they are undoubtedly practising self-decoration camouflage. Treated separately is molecular mimicry, which shares some similarity; for instance a virus may mimic the molecular properties of its host, allowing it access to its cells.

Aggressive mimicry is opposite in principle to defensive mimicry, where the mimic generally benefits from being treated as harmful. The mimic may resemble its own prey, or some other organism which is beneficial or at least not harmful to the prey. The model, i.e. the organism being ‘imitated’, may experience increased or reduced fitness, or may not be affected at all by the relationship. On the other hand, the signal receiver inevitably suffers from being tricked, as is the case in most mimicry complexes.

Aggressive mimicry often involves the predator employing signals which draw its potential prey towards it, a strategy which allows predators to simply sit and wait for prey to come to them. The promise of food or sex are most commonly used as lures. However, this need not be the case; as long as the predator’s true identity is concealed, it may be able to approach prey more easily than would otherwise be the case. In terms of species involved, systems may be composed of two or three species; in two-species systems the signal receiver, or “dupe”, is the model.

In terms of the visual dimension, the distinction between aggressive mimicry and camouflage is not always clear. Authors such as Wickler have emphasized the significance of the signal to its receiver as delineating mimicry from camouflage. However, it is not easy to assess how ‘significant’ a signal may be for the dupe, and the distinction between the two can thus be rather fuzzy. Mixed signals may be employed: aggressive mimics often have a specific part of the body sending a deceptive signal, with the rest being hidden or camouflaged.

Roberto Carlos Impossible Goal Against France - © Attention Deficit Disorder Prosthetic Memory Program
ADDPMP144
Roberto Carlos Impossible Goal Against France
Electroencephalophone - © Attention Deficit Disorder Prosthetic Memory Program
ADDPMP374
Electroencephalophone
The Neuroscience Of Empathy - © Attention Deficit Disorder Prosthetic Memory Program
ADDPMP233
The Neuroscience Of Empathy
Hannibal Lecter’s Memory Palace - © Attention Deficit Disorder Prosthetic Memory Program
ADDPMP012
Hannibal Lecter’s Memory Palace
Zone Of Death - © Attention Deficit Disorder Prosthetic Memory Program
ADDPMP460
Zone Of Death
Monster Trucks Construction - © Attention Deficit Disorder Prosthetic Memory Program
ADDPMP569
Monster Trucks Construction
The cone of plausibility - © Attention Deficit Disorder Prosthetic Memory Program
ADDPMP084
The cone of plausibility
As Slow As Possible - © Attention Deficit Disorder Prosthetic Memory Program
ADDPMP475
As Slow As Possible
Banggai Cardinalfish - © Attention Deficit Disorder Prosthetic Memory Program
ADDPMP225
Banggai Cardinalfish
Tangerine Dream Equipment - © Attention Deficit Disorder Prosthetic Memory Program
ADDPMP237
Tangerine Dream Equipment
Tabular Iceberg - © Attention Deficit Disorder Prosthetic Memory Program
ADDPMP540
Tabular Iceberg
Vortex Project - © Attention Deficit Disorder Prosthetic Memory Program
ADDPMP587
Vortex Project

You are using an outdated browser.
Please upgrade your browser to improve your experience.