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Re: evasive, camouflaged flocking

As an example okapis are -well- purple for want of a better term (sable
might work but it has a very violet caste to it).  Plants in a deep
jungle can have a purple cast but most are green.  

Light/dark value is THE most important element of camouflage, then the
next would be what RGB/ROYGBIV shade an object is.  If the areas an
animal spends most of it's time in is brokenly lit through trees (such
as with the okapi) you get light and dark patches breaking up the visual
impression of the animal.

I must point out though that toucans are remarkably camouflaged in their
native environments with their brightly colored and similarily valued
beaks. The greens, yellows, oranges, and reds have a similar value but
serve to distract the eye from the shape of the bird quite well, as well
as sending long distance visual signals to a prospective mate.  

Bright green praying mantis or orchid wasps certainly do well in
disguising themsleves as particular parts of particular plants, but I
don't really picture Joe Triceratops disguising himself as a cabbage

Some dinosaurs as juveniles are garanteed to be brightly colored AND
camouflaged-mom and pop would want to keep track of where junior was and
just as badly not want anybody else to find him.  But consider- fawns
and lion cubs have spots, tapir babies have stripes as do pigs, and yet
young horses and elephant calves have the same coloration from juveniles
to adults.  Crocodiles have far brighter markings as hatchlings then
they do as adults.  Anacondas and pythons are brightly patterned
throughout their lives. 

Perhaps camouflage coloration is more a requirement of the environmental
niche than a characteristic of a particular species. 

-Betty Cunningham

> Camouflage works not only by giving an animal (or camouflaged object)a
> similar coloration as its surroundings, but by breaking up its visual
> outline as well.  If animal's coloration is similar in value to its
> surroundings, then these camouflage concepts could still work for animals
> seeing monochromatically.

Flying Goat Graphics
(Society of Vertebrate Paleontology member)