Fog-harvesting Namibian beetles
Coast of Namibia. Latitude 18˚ 58’S to 16˚ 56’S
There are a number of different fog-harvesting beetles such as Stenocara gracilipes in the dry, yet fog-rich, coastal area of Namibia. All the beetles climb to the top of coastal sand dunes, where some of these beetles harvest fog off their backs, while others build or dig fog-harvesting sand ridges or trenches on the dunes.2
We can mimic such adaptive behavior, either by planting or supporting fog-harvesting vegetation, adapting materials used in constructed fog-harvesting screens, or learning from the behaviors of fog-harvesting beetles and other life forms, including those that we have not yet discovered. The living natural world has more to teach us than we could ever imagine.
1. “Water Vapor Harvesting: Namib Desert Beetle,” http://www.asknature.org/strategy/dc2127c6d0008a6c7748e4e4474e7aa1#.U84AdaiySkc, accessed 7-21-2014.
2. “Fog-Basking Behaviour and Water Collection Efficiency in Namib Desert Darkling Beetles,” Thomas Nørgaard and Marie Dacke, Frontiers in Zoology 2010, 7:23, http://www.frontiersinzoology.com/content/7/1/23, accessed 7-21-2014.
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