Not a derm*estid larva! - Polyxenus lagurus
Hollis, Hillsborough County, New Hampshire, USA
February 10, 2006
Size: 2 mm approx.
When I first spotted this small thing crawling around among some apparent rodent nest remains with movements much like a derm*estid beetle larva's, I was certain I knew what it was. When I viewed it with my loupe and saw the hair pattern, I knew it was a derm*estid larva I'd never seen before. But it turns out I was wrong on both counts: It was not a derm*estid larva (not larva, not a beetle, not even an insect!) and I had seen one before. It took awhile to dicover that though.
I noticed that he could climb the walls of a plastic cup a lot better than another small derm*estid I have. Nevertheless I clicked off a load of photos of the little guy, made a derm*estid beetle container up for him, plopped him into it, and settled down to pick through the photos I'd taken.
I was so pleased at having found one with such a different pattern of bristles and a double tail tuft, although one tuft seemed to disintegrate in the container during the photo shoot. Then I looked at the underside views. There were the six tiny legs, and six more, and six more ...
Suddenly I realized what I had found and photographed, a tufted millipede! It has a predecessor in the guide, one I photographed and submitted last year.
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