Hairy earwigs

Hairy earwigs

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This image is part of the feature Bat Cave

Credit: LOUISE MURRAY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Hairy earwigs, (Arixenia esau), Deer Cave, Borneo, Malaysia. This species of earwig lives exclusively on the naked bat (Cheiromeles torquatas), feeding on the bat's skin secretions. At dusk the bats leave the cave and many earwigs drop to the cave floor. They then spend the night crawling up the cave walls to reach their host. Long antennae help the earwigs sense their surroundings in the complete darkness of the cave. Deer Cave is home to millions of bats. Their droppings collect on the cave floor and build up to huge heights. The droppings support a large ecosystem of animals, described as troglobites, that live exclusively in the darkness of the cave.

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Keywords: animal, arixenia esau, asia, asian, biological, biology, borneo, cave, crawling, deer cave, earwig, entomology, fauna, hairy earwig, insect, invertebrate, invertebrates, malaysia, nature, sarawak, troglobite, wildlife, zoological, zoology

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