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Collembola - Sminthurinus henshawi

Collembola - Sminthurinus henshawi
Norfolk, Virginia, USA
February 7, 2009
Size: ~0.75mm (or less)
Another one found on same piece of bark.

Images of this individual: tag all
Collembola - Sminthurinus henshawi Collembola - Sminthurinus henshawi Collembola - Sminthurinus henshawi


Sminthurinus henshawi forma similitortus
Thanks for sending some specimens to Dr Snider who confirmed, based on chaetotaxy, that it is indeed S. henshawi.
Given the characteristic dorsal pigmentation, which is quite different from that of the principal form of S. henshawi, I prefer to add the infraspecific name forma similitortus.

Sminthurinus similitortus
Thanks, Scott, for collecting some specimens. The matter is quite interesting. In the work of Maynard 1951 I found a figure that matches well with the pattern on your specimens. Maynard described these as a new species and called it Sminthurinus similitortus because it reminded him at a turtle. similitortus means similar to a turtle.
But later S. similitortus turned out to be a species complex. The deposited types turned out to be from different species... In 1981 similitortus was sunk to synonymy in part with elegans and in part with henshawi, by Christiansen and Bellinger. That is why I did not found it at first. The best match was then cf. reticulatus. But your pictures are the proof similitortus is still alive and kicking. Your specimens do not match neither with elegans nor with henshawi.
Therefore, S. similitortus seems to be a proper species on its own and needs to be resurrected.

In summary
Sminthurinus similitortus is a species complex of 3 species and will require proper redescription. Your specimens will be appreciated by Dr Snider...

BugGuide species name
Should the species page here be renamed from reticulatus to similitortus?

Yes pls rename page
S. reticulatus is a European species. Howerver Maynard 1951 did provide a drawing (fig. 521) of S. elegans that matches quite well with reticulatus...
Whenever somebody finds such specimens we can also (re)open that can of worms... ;-)

The Plot Thickens :^)
I have just collected two beautiful specimens this morning and will send them to Dr. Snider. Can't wait to see what he finds!

Thanks Frans!

Sminthurinus cf. reticulatus
Mindblowing pictures!
This specimen could be a female given it is > 0.5 mm
In Sminthurinus males are often much smaller than females.

I discussed the matter with Dr Snider of the Michigan univ and he will be happy to receive some sample specimens for a definitive identification.

I have found...
a number of these at this one site. I should have no problem finding some to collect if I can see them! This particular one I could see...just barely.

I will try to send some to Dr. Snider asap.


I never really care for sprin
I never really care for springtails, but the pics lately on bugguide are just so amazing... can not help myself being fascinated with these creatures and the amazing photographs..

I never knew they existed...
until I started contributing to Bug Guide. Kind of embarrassing for me to admit this. Now, I look forward to finding more species to photograph.

This one would also make a good plush toy.

This was a...
chubby one. Looks like it's about to pop!

OMG, I can't believe I missed these photos....
Maybe you submitted them directly to Springtails...SOOOO adorable - and of course, magnificently photographed. Wouldn't a NatGeo article on springtails (with your photos of course) be great !!!! And less than 1 mm!!!

Yes, I placed these...
directly in Collembola as Frans usually checks this page out for new images to put an ID on. Of course it would be nice to have these images published.....maybe someday :^)

Thanks for the kind words!

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