Caption: Springtail (Order Collembola). The name "springtail" refers to the specialized jumping appendage (furcula) at the end of the abdomen. When the insect is undisturbed these appendages are turned forwards and held in position by a catch beneath the abdomen; but in case of alarm they are kicked forcibly downwards and backwards, jerking the body into the air. Springtails have remained anatomically unchanged for millions of years, and are considered living fossils. They are wingless. The antennae (upper right) are the main sense organs, as their eyes are small and poorly developed. Springtails live mainly in leaf litter, and feed on decaying matter and are important in soil biology and soil ecology. They are not considered to be insects by many authorities but are instead referred to as hexapods.
Magnification*: x10
Type: SEM
Copyright 2007 Dennis Kunkel Microscopy, Inc.
Keywords: 26430C,insects,insect,springtail,Collembola,unknown,apterygota,apterygote ,furcula,hexapod,hexapods,invertebrate,invertebrates,Order Collembola,soil,soil biology,soil ecology,spring tail,wingless,SEM,arthropod,arthropods,10.01.07