Scanning electron micrograph of the primitive eye of an unidentified species of springtail (order Collembola). The eye is made up of five separate ocelli, each one consisting of a group of light- sensitive cells covered by a single cuticular lens. Several sensory hairs (sensilla) are also visible in the photograph. The patterned, granular cuticle (horny skin) is characteristic of the springtail superfamily Poduroidea. Springtails are the most primitive insects, dating back 300 million years in the fossil record. They are wingless and lack extenal reproductive appendages. Magnification: x 3000 at 8x10 inch size.
September 13th, 2018
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