Nature Notes from Skye
(and occasionally other places)

Microscope pictures to go with 1 May 2004 entry.  I'm a complete beginner at using a microscope let alone taking photos through it.  Both creatures were alive and mobile while the pictures were taken.

Mosquito larva.  Colour should probably be lighter.  The "Head" section (i.e. all bar the "tail") is about 3 mm x 2 mm.


 
 

The red mite.  Below left - front legs and palps from above.  Below right - rear end from below.  Bottom picture - front end from below.  This last pic is very poor, but you can just about make out how the legs arise in pairs from pouches.  To the left of the picture are two rear legs and to the right are two front legs, just to the left of which are the two palps pointing up into the top right corner of the picture.

 

 

The whole mite is covered in red hair.  When it was upside-down it could deform its body into different shapes to try and get upright, rather like someone pulling and prodding at a water-filled balloon, an extraordinary sight.

 

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