Painting Cows to Look Like Zebras Has a Surprising Benefit

Scientists in Japan have discovered a clever way to reduce the need for using pesticides on livestock. Their study found that painting zebra-like stripes on cows significantly reduced attacks by biting flies, providing a means of defending livestock against flies without pesticides. Flies are less likely to land on black and white surfaces due to the polarization of light, which impairs their perception, according to the study. Researchers found that the zebra-painted cattle were bitten nearly 50% less than solid-black animals. Fly bites cost the livestock industry billions every year.

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