Gecko foot hairs (Hemidactylus frenatus), SEM

Gecko foot hairs (Hemidactylus frenatus), SEM

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Credit: DENNIS KUNKEL MICROSCOPY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) Gecko (lizard) foot hairs (Hemidactylus frenatus). A lizard's foot has at least a half a million microscopic hairs, (one-tenth the thickness of a human hair). The end of each hair is split into smaller hairs. At the frayed ends these smaller hairs have spatula-shaped structures -- about a billion per gecko. This spatula-shaped tip can flatten over rough or smooth surfaces and increases the area with which the hair can make contact. The geckos movement is accomplished by rolling and un-rolling these hairs onto the surface. It is a native species of Southeast Asia It is also known as the Pacific House Gecko, Asian House Gecko, or the house lizard. Hemidactylus frenatus is morphologically most similar to Mediterranean species Hemidactylus turcicus, the Mediterranean House Gecko. Hemidactylus is a nocturnal species that preys on flying insects. Magnification: x260 when shortest axis printed at 25

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Keywords: 99826a, chordata, colored, coloured, common, electron, false-colored, false-coloured, foot, frenatus, gecko, gekkonidae, hairs, hemidactylus, house, lizard, lizards, micrograph, reptilia, scanning, sem, seta, setae, setal, spatulae, squamata, tips, toe, vertebrate, vertebrates

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