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Photo#153195
Brilliant metallic hunchbacked springtail - Lepidocyrtus paradoxus

Brilliant metallic hunchbacked springtail - Lepidocyrtus paradoxus
Hollis, Hillsborough County, New Hampshire, USA
October 19, 2007
Size: about 2.2 mm
Believe it or not, this is the same individual after I touched it with my alcohol-wet fine-tipped paintbrush. I don't know if it lost its scales in springing away or if the alcohol soaked the scales and made them transparent rather than metallic-reflective.

Images of this individual: tag all
Brilliant metallic hunchbacked springtail - Lepidocyrtus paradoxus Brilliant metallic hunchbacked springtail - Lepidocyrtus paradoxus Brilliant metallic hunchbacked springtail - Lepidocyrtus paradoxus Brilliant metallic hunchbacked springtail - Lepidocyrtus paradoxus Brilliant metallic hunchbacked springtail - Lepidocyrtus paradoxus

Moved

Moved
Moved from Lepidocyrtus.

The scales got washed off...
the scale cover has two main functions:
1. to prevent/reduce dehydration
2. to reduce the grip of predators: the scales are easily detached, so when a predator grabs a specimen, it can mostly escape using the furca, leaving the predator behind with a bunch of scales...
In the next moult the scales are then restored.

 
Thanks for the info.
As long as they stay moist I guess they can survive after losing their scales.

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