Coloured SEM of the head of a silverfish

Coloured SEM of the head of a silverfish

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Credit: K.H. KJELDSEN/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Silverfish. Coloured scanning electron micrograph of the head of a silverfish, Lepisma saccharina, a common household pest and member of the primitive order of bristletails. Silverfish are extremely fast-moving insects covered in glistening silvery scales, from which their common name derives. Adults measure about 1cm in length and have slender, tapering bodies with three bristles at the rear and movable antennae (seen here) covered with sensory hairs. Their mating ritual involves a complex dance in which the male deposits packets of sperm on the ground which the female then picks up. Magnification unknown.

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Keywords: animal, household, insecta, invertebrate, invertebrates, lepisma saccharina, nature, pest, primitive insect, silverfish, thysanura, wildlife, zoology

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