Adaptation

Some non-poisonous species avoid being eaten by mimicking the warning coloration of toxic species. The non-venomous king snake resembles the venomous coral snake. This is referred to as Batesian mimicry. Another type of mimicry, called Mullerian mimicry, involves several toxic species that are similar in appearance. For example, many stinging bees and wasps have a similar striped pattern of black and yellow. The advantage to a toxic species of resembling another toxic species is that the hard lesson a predator learns from its experience with one species can be generalized to other species.


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