Pubic louse, SEM

Pubic louse, SEM

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Credit: E. GRAY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Pubic louse. Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of a pubic louse (Phthirus pubis), also known as the crab louse, clinging to human hair. An infestation of P. pubis causes pediculosis, the symptoms of which are severe itching and a rash. The lice feed by sucking blood and are spread through sharing bedding and clothing, or by sexual contact. Each of the louse's six legs ends in a massive claw, which folds inward to meet a thumb- like projection on the opposite side. These claws allow the louse to climb and swing through its hairy habitat, locking into position when disturbed. Magnification: x60 when printed 10cm wide.

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Keywords: allergenic, animal, blood-sucking, claws, coloured, crab, crabs, disease causing, hair, hairs, human, insect, insecta, invertebrate, invertebrates, legs, lice, nature, parasite, parasitic, pediculosis, phthirus pubis, pubic louse, scanning electron micrograph, sem, strand, strands, wildlife, zoology

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