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Springtails  - Sminthurides

Springtails - Sminthurides
Sitka County, Alaska, USA
August 28, 2013
I'm not sure if this one or two species of spring tail - it was a little difficult to photograph them as they were hopping and drifting around the surface of a local lake. It appeared there were a lot of them all over the surface.

Moved from Springtails and allies.

Alaska data point.

Sminthurides sp.
The large specimen is a female, the smaller one a male. They are engaged in a courtship ritual. The males of Sminthurides have highly modified grasping antennae with which they can grab the antennae of a female. If she is in the mood he will loosen her and surround her with spermatophores (spermdrop on stalk). When she leaves the spermatophores circle she will take up a spermdrop and get pregnant ;-)
This is how Sminthurides 'do it'.
It could be Sminthurides aquaticus given you found them at the watersurface. But also other Sminthurides species may be found at the watersurface. Hence 'sp'.

Moved for expert attention.
Moved from ID Request.

Evidently this was overlooked in ID Request. I'm not sure how much of an ID you'll get from this shot, but Frans is good, so let's see what he has to say. :)

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