POWER AND SYRED / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY POWER AND SYRED / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Bee sting. False-colour scanning electron micro- graph (SEM) of the sting of a honeybee, seen through the eye of a needle. The tip of the sting is armed with backward sloping barbs which makes it difficult to remove once it is embedded in skin. This barbed sting of the honeybee, Apis mellifera, was originally an egg-laying organ that evolved into a weapon of defence. It consists of moveable chitinous elements into which the ducts of two glands open, one gland producing a poison which is injected when the sting penetrates. Magnification: x80 at 6x4.5cm size.
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