Light micrograph of inflated beetle penis

Light micrograph of inflated beetle penis

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This image is part of the feature Phalloblaster

Credit: KATE SMITH/CSIRO/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Beetle penis. Light micrograph of the penis of the beetle Megamerus kingi, inflated using a phallo- blaster (vesica everter). The structure of insect genitalia is important in insect classification. A device which automatically inflates these tiny structures, called a "phalloblaster", has been designed by Dr. Marcus Matthews (CSIRO, Canberra, Australia). The penis is precision clamped and inflated with alcohol. Its unique structure can then be identified. Here the rounded head (at top) is usually folded up inside the tube attached to the beetle. Megamerus kingi is a chrysomelid leaf- beetle, 30mm long, that lives in semi-arid areas. Magnification: x3.8 at 35mm size. x5.5 at 6x4.5cm.

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Keywords: animal, beetle, beetle penis, inflated penis, insect, insect identification device, insecta, invertebrate, invertebrates, megamerus, megamerus kingi, nature, penis, penis inflated, phalloblaster, type, vesica everter, wildlife, zoology

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