Invertebrata

Invertebrate education and photography

September 19, 2014 10:44 am
brains-and-bodies:

From Natural Selection







"While these organised structures might look like the work of an artist, they’re actually just the remnants left behind where a sand bubbler crab’s been snacking. During low tide they exit their burrows (as seen in the top pic) to scour the sand for tiny bits of organic debris in a radial motion. While eating, the crabs ball the excess sand on their heads, then discard it when it gets too big for them to see over, leaving behind a remarkable-looking reminder which helps them keep from searching for food in the same sand twice.Each time High Tide returns, the small structures crumble and are washed away, all while leaving behind more food particles to fuel the tiny crab’s next accidentally artistic pursuits.”Source: http://tinyurl.com/7vpzwj8Video of the Sand bubbler crab in action:http://vimeo.com/6449515

brains-and-bodies:

From Natural Selection

"While these organised structures might look like the work of an artist, they’re actually just the remnants left behind where a sand bubbler crab’s been snacking. 

During low tide they exit their burrows (as seen in the top pic) to scour the sand for tiny bits of organic debris in a radial motion. While eating, the crabs ball the excess sand on their heads, then discard it when it gets too big for them to see over, leaving behind a remarkable-looking reminder which helps them keep from searching for food in the same sand twice.

Each time High Tide returns, the small structures crumble and are washed away, all while leaving behind more food particles to fuel the tiny crab’s next accidentally artistic pursuits.”

Source: http://tinyurl.com/7vpzwj8
Video of the Sand bubbler crab in action:http://vimeo.com/6449515

(via scinerds)

September 9, 2014 3:01 pm

cool-critters:

Hummingbird hawk moth (Macroglossum stellatarum)

The hummingbird hawk-moth is a species in the family Sphingidae. It is distributed throughout the northern Old World from Portugal to Japan, but is resident only in warmer climates (southern Europe, North Africa, and points east).

It is a strong flier, dispersing widely and can be found virtually anywhere in the hemisphere in the summer. Its long proboscis and its hovering behaviour, accompanied by an audible humming noise, make it look remarkably like a hummingbird while feeding on flowers. It flies during the day, especially in bright sunshine, but also at dusk, dawn, and even in the rain, which is unusual for even diurnal hawkmoths.

Its visual abilities have been much studied, and it has been shown to have a relatively good ability to learn colours.

photo credits: wiki, bbc, wildlifeinsight, glaucus

(via rhamphotheca)

August 26, 2014 3:25 pm

Family Saturniidae- The Giant Silkworm Moths

Saturniidae is a large family of moths with roughly 2300 known species. Adult saturniids can be easily recognized by their large, hairy bodies and relatively small heads. Adults of this group have reduced mouthparts and do not eat. They instead live off of the fat that they stored up as a larva. Because of this they are able to devote almost all of their time to reproduction. The adult males have very large, feathery antennae that allow them to detect the pheromones of a female from great distances.

(Source: Encyclopedia of Life)

(Image credit: 1, 2, 3)

August 25, 2014 8:54 pm

astronomy-to-zoology:

Zebra Conchylodes (Conchylodes ovulalis)

…a species of pytaustine crambid moth which occurs in North America from Pennsylvania to Florida west to Arizona and south into the neotropics. Adult Conchylodes ovulalis are typically seen in flight from May to September or August and inhabit deciduous and possibly other forests. Zebra conchylodes are typically associated and feed on the Asteraceae.  

Classification

Animalia-Arthropoda-Insecta-Lepidoptera-Pyraloidea-Crambidae-Pyraustinae-Spilomelini-Conchylodes-C. ovulalis

Images: ©Micheal Skvarla and ©Larry McDaniel

August 23, 2014 5:08 pm
rhamphotheca:

Baby Flamboyant Cuttlefish (Metasepia pfefferi) in egg, Negros Oriental, Philippines
“Although still inside of its egg, these flamboyant cuttlefish were still able to flash dark purple if something got too close. when they are born they will be ready to hunt and change color on their own...”
photograph/comments by Dan Geary
(via: Project Noah)

rhamphotheca:

Baby Flamboyant Cuttlefish (Metasepia pfefferi) in egg, Negros Oriental, Philippines

Although still inside of its egg, these flamboyant cuttlefish were still able to flash dark purple if something got too close. when they are born they will be ready to hunt and change color on their own...”

photograph/comments by Dan Geary

(via: Project Noah)

August 22, 2014 10:48 am
Some Moths are Actually Butterflies According to DNA Sequencing Study
August 21, 2014 8:39 pm

cool-critters:

Chorinea sylphina

The Sylphina Angel is a species of butterfly of the Riodinidae family. It is found in Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia. It has transparent wings.Adults fly in full sunshine, but occasionally settle beneath the leaves of bushes.photo credits: Adrian Hoskins, Ssola

(via rhamphotheca)

7:35 pm

rhamphotheca:

Asian Multi-spotted Ladybird Beetle (Harmonia axyridis):

The first photo set shows the variety in coloration and spotting, bit what stays the same are the large white edge spots on the sides of the pronotum (thoracic shield).  (photo by ©entomart)

The second set shows the full life cycle of H. axyridis. (photo by puddingforbrains).

This species has been widely introduced, purposefully, into Europe and North America, as garden pest control. This has had a deleterious effect on several of our native lady bird beetle (“ladybugs”) species, as native species are often unable to compete with the voracious predator of scales and aphids.

In the United States, we do have several species of native Ladybird Beetle. Find out more here:

http://bugguide.net/node/view/179

August 17, 2014 12:40 am
rhamphotheca:

The incredible honey hunters of the Himalayan foothills
by Bec Crew
Twice a year, locals in central Nepal risk their lives high up in the Himalayan foothills to harvest honey produced by the world’s largest honeybee.
Growing up to 3 cm (1.2 in) in length, the Himalayan cliff honey bee of Nepal is the world’s largest honeybee. 
Found only in the foothills of the Himalayas, building their homes at altitudes of between 2,500 and 3,000 m (8,200 and 9,800 ft) and foraging as high up as 4,100 m (13,500 ft) above the ground, these insects have a unique ability to thrive at incredible heights.
The Himalayan cliff honey bee is the only species in the world to produce a type of honey called red spring honey, and it cannot be reproduced by commerical beekeepers due to the high altitudes that give it its unique properties. Said to be "intoxicating and relaxing", red spring honey is understandably very valuable, and twice a year, honey hunters from the Gurung population of Nepal risk their lives to harvest it up in the foothills…
(read more: Science Alert! - Australia and New Zealand)
photo by Andrew Newey

rhamphotheca:

The incredible honey hunters of the Himalayan foothills

by Bec Crew

Twice a year, locals in central Nepal risk their lives high up in the Himalayan foothills to harvest honey produced by the world’s largest honeybee.

Growing up to 3 cm (1.2 in) in length, the Himalayan cliff honey bee of Nepal is the world’s largest honeybee. 

Found only in the foothills of the Himalayas, building their homes at altitudes of between 2,500 and 3,000 m (8,200 and 9,800 ft) and foraging as high up as 4,100 m (13,500 ft) above the ground, these insects have a unique ability to thrive at incredible heights.

The Himalayan cliff honey bee is the only species in the world to produce a type of honey called red spring honey, and it cannot be reproduced by commerical beekeepers due to the high altitudes that give it its unique properties. Said to be "intoxicating and relaxing", red spring honey is understandably very valuable, and twice a year, honey hunters from the Gurung population of Nepal risk their lives to harvest it up in the foothills…

(read more: Science Alert! - Australia and New Zealand)

photo by Andrew Newey