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Honey bees have 30 percent better Eyesight than previously recorded: Study

The findings suggest that honey bees can spot a potential predator, and thus escape, far earlier than what we thought previously

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Sydney April 7, 2017: Honey bees have 30 per cent better eyesight than has been previously recorded, suggest results of “eye tests” given to the flying insects.

The findings suggest that they can spot a potential predator, and thus escape, far earlier than what we thought previously.

The researchers believe that the results, published in the journal Scientific Reports, could provide insights into the lives of honey bees, and new opportunities for translating this knowledge into fields such as robot vision.

“We’ve shown that the honey bee has higher visual acuity than previously reported. They can resolve finer details than we originally thought,” said one of the researches Steven Wiederman from Adelaide Medical School, University of Adelaide in Australia.

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“Importantly, these findings could also be useful in our work on designing bio-inspired robotics and robot vision, and for basic research on bee biology,” he added.

The researchers set out to answer two specific questions: first, what is the smallest well-defined object that a bee can see? (its object resolution); and second, how far away can a bee see an object, even if it cannot see that object clearly? (maximum detectability limit).

To do so, the researchers took electrophysiological recordings of the neural responses occurring in single photoreceptors in a bee’s eyes.

The photoreceptors are detectors of light in the retina, and each time an object passes into the field of vision, it registers a neural response.

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“We found that in the frontal part of the eye, where the resolution is maximised, honey bees can clearly see objects that are as small as 1.9 degree — that’s approximately the width of your thumb when you stretch your arm out in front of you,” Elisa Rigosi from Lund University in Sweden said.

This is 30 per cent better eyesight than has been previously recorded, she said.

“In terms of the smallest object a bee can detect, but not clearly, this works out to be about 0.6 degree — that’s one third of your thumb width at arm’s length,” Rigosi said.

“These new results suggest that bees have the chance to see a potential predator, and thus escape, far earlier than what we thought previously, or perceive landmarks in the environment better than we expected, which is useful for navigation and thus for survival,” she added.

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This research offers new and useful information about insect vision more broadly as well as for honey bees, Wiederman said. (IANS)

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USA: Everything you want to know about Security Clearance; Find out here!

A security clearance allows a person access to classified national security information or restricted areas.

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Former CIA Director John O. Brennan speaks at the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington, March 11, 2014. President Donald Trump revoked Brennan's security clearance Wednesday. VOA
Former CIA Director John O. Brennan speaks at the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington, March 11, 2014. President Donald Trump revoked Brennan's security clearance Wednesday. VOA

U.S. President Donald Trump on Wednesday revoked the security clearance of former CIA Director John Brennan. We take a look at what that means.

What is a security clearance?

A security clearance allows a person access to classified national security information or restricted areas after completion of a background check. The clearance by itself does not guarantee unlimited access. The agency seeking the clearance must determine what specific area of information the person needs to access.

What are the different levels of security clearance?

There are three levels: Confidential, secret and top secret. Security clearances don’t expire. But, top secret clearances are reinvestigated every five years, secret clearances every 10 years and confidential clearances every 15 years.

All federal agencies follow a list of 13 potential justifications for revoking or denying a clearance. VOA
All federal agencies follow a list of 13 potential justifications for revoking or denying a clearance. VOA

Who has security clearances?

According to a Government Accountability Office report released last year, about 4.2 million people had a security clearance as of 2015, they included military personnel, civil servants, and government contractors.

Why does one need a security clearance in retirement?

Retired senior intelligence officials and military officers need their security clearances in case they are called to consult on sensitive issues.

Also Read: Governments Across The World Request Apple for 30,000 Device Information

Can the president revoke a security clearance?

Apparently. But there is no precedent for a president revoking someone’s security clearance. A security clearance is usually revoked by the agency that sought it for an employee or contractor. All federal agencies follow a list of 13 potential justifications for revoking or denying a clearance, which can include criminal acts, lack of allegiance to the United States, behavior or situation that could compromise an individual and security violations. (VOA)