Compounds used by organisms as a source of information to interpret environmental stimuli even though they did not evolve in the emitter for this function.
Organisms obtain information available in the environment through cues, which can be acoustic, chemical, electric, magnetic, tactile, and visual (see “Magnetic Cues” in this book). Chemical cues are compounds used by organisms as a source of information to interpret environmental stimuli even though they did not evolve for this function in the emitter (see “Evolution” in this book). Numerous compounds of several chemical classes can act as chemical cues, including cuticular hydrocarbons (CHCs) and other molecules such as peptides and proteins (see “Protein”in this book). Like other cues, chemical cues can influence the behavior of a receiver and are sensed by all organisms that use them for varied aspects of life, such as orientation, location of food, nest sites or partners,...
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