Damselfly penis, coloured SEM

Damselfly penis, coloured SEM

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This image is part of the feature Battle Of The Insect Sexes

Credit: POWER AND SYRED/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Damselfly penis. Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of a damselfly (Ischnura elegans) penis. During mating, the male damselfly uses abdominal claspers to grab the female by the neck. The female then curves her body round until the tip of her abdomen touches his genital opening and collects the sperm. The male penis has two hook-like extensions that are lined with fine hairs. These hooks are able to remove a previous mate's sperm contained within the female's sperm storage organs. The portion of the male reproductive organ that is inserted into the female is known as the aedeagus. Magnification: x56 when printed at 10cm wide.

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Keywords: aedeagus, anatomical, anatomy, animal, biological, biology, blue tailed damselfly, coloured, damselfly, entomology, false-coloured, fauna, genital, genitalia, genitals, insect, insecta, invertebrate, invertebrates, ischnura elegans, male, mating, nature, one, penis, phallus, reproductive structure, scanning electron micrograph, scanning electron microscope, sem, sex, sexual organ, sexual reproduction, single, sperm displacement, wildlife, zoological, zoology

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