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Sapphirina - male

Sapphirina - Male
Block Island, Washington County, Rhode Island, USA
July 12, 2015
Size: ~3mm
Thought I'd share this with everyone before I whisk it away to its new guide page. Identifying this took me a while. Over the last few days they've become abundant in the water at the beach. We've been having a bloom of salps and copepods, including these, which are now easily visible in the waves as sparkling blue disks. This represents a new crustacean order for BugGuide and a new sort of incredible iridescent arthropod for this site's collection. Apparently only the males shine like this.

Moved from Sapphirinidae.

Moved from ID Request.

cool thing
Don't see many copepods around here. Very abundant and very diverse, just too tiny for most, I think; I only ever seem to photograph them accidentally when pointing my camera at some larger crustacean. Didn't know that there were iridescent ones, though.

I had no idea either
My first guess for this one was isopod but after I saw some appendages under the microscope I realized it had to be a copepod. I personally am just aiming to find all the local copepod orders, not even bothering with families for now. As you said, they're just so diverse and tiny.

It's beautiful. They reflect light? Also thanks for bringing the fact that Bugguide covers crustaceans to my attention - didn't even know that!

BugGuide currently covers freshwater and intertidal Arthropoda as well as terrestrial ones. There are some studies on how these creatures refract light. I haven't yet looked at them much but I know it has to do with tiny hexagonal structures on them.

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