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Scientists say that humans have a biased view of the most repugnant insect - the cockroach. Not all species of cockroaches are pests. In fact, these group of insects have a diversity of forms, and some are used for medicinal purposes. Although cockroaches can withstand up to 10 times more radiation than humans, they are not immune to it.

科學家說,人類認為蟑螂是最讓人反感的昆蟲,這看法怕是偏誤的。並非所有種類蟑螂都是害蟲。事實上,蟑螂有很多樣的外型,某些還可供作藥用。蟑螂儘管能承受10倍於人類的輻射,但並非全然免疫於輻射。

George Beccaloni, curator of orthopteroid insects at the Natural History Museum in London, said only 30 of the known 5,000 species have pest-like tendencies. He explained that these insects live in many diverse environments, so they come in various shapes and sizes.

倫敦自然歷史博物館直翅類昆蟲館館長貝卡羅尼說,已知5000種蟑螂中僅30種具有害蟲趨向。他解釋,由於其生存在很多樣不同環境,因此具有多種外型和體型。

Cockroaches have also been a preferred subject for science research and experiments. Their exoskeletal wings have inspired several robot designs. For years now, scientists have also been studying cockroach legs to design human prosthetic legs.

科學研究和實驗也偏好使用蟑螂。蟑螂翼的外骨骼結構啟發相當多機械設計。多年來,科學家透過研究蟑螂腳來設計人類義肢。

It is through the study of their biological make-up that scientists were able to discover that cockroaches do have a weakness; radiation. Beccaloni told BBC News that "Cockroaches are only about five times more resistant [than humans]," when hit outright by 10 grays of radiation. Other species can survive ten times as intense as that which makes rank the lowest in terms of radiation tolerance for insects.

透過研究其生理結構,科學家發現蟑螂確實有弱點:輻射。貝卡羅尼告訴英國廣播公司新聞網(BBC News)說,10戈雷輻射劑量直射下,「蟑螂耐受輻射力只有人類的約5倍。」其他昆蟲有可以承受10倍者,所以蟑螂在耐受輻射的昆蟲中排名只能墊底。

新聞辭典

bias:名詞、動詞,偏見。例句:Good managers have a bias for action.(優秀經理人偏好實際行動。)

prefer:動詞,選擇(與…相比)。例句:I always prefer to believe the best of everybody, it saves so much trouble.(我總選擇相信人之為善,這讓我省事很多。)

survive:動詞,存活、倖存。例句:To live is to suffer, to survive is to find some meaning in the suffering.(活著便是受苦,而存活是為了探尋受苦之意義。)

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