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Still Waters

Old art prints reveal history of the 'worms'

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By examining art printed from woodblocks spanning five centuries, Blair Hedges, a professor of biology at Penn State University, has identified the species responsible for making the ever-present wormholes in European printed art since the Renaissance.

The hole-makers, two species of wood-boring beetles, are widely distributed today, but the "wormhole record," as Hedges calls it, reveals a different pattern in the past, where the two species met along a zone across central Europe like a battle line of two armies.

http://www.scienceda...21120193513.htm

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