An Oxford scientist, Professor Gero Miesenböck, has made female flies produce the male courtship song using remote brain control.


The brain control techniques, which Miesenböck pioneered 3 years ago, use a laser to trigger certain actions. The ‘song’, which flies make by vibrating a wing, is never produced by females, so the findings indicate an astonishing similarity in male and female fly brains.


“Anatomically, the differences are so subtle,” Miesenböck told the Telegraph, “How is it that the neural equipment is so similar, but the sexes behave so differently?”


Researchers suggest that fly brains may have a ‘master switch’ that determines male or female behaviour.