50.9 MB (2.0 MB compressed)
4748 x 3744 pixels
40.1 x 31.8 cm ⏐ 15.8 x 12.5 in (300dpi)
STEVE GSCHMEISSNER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY STEVE GSCHMEISSNER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Paper wasp (Polistes sp.) larvae, coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM). Each larva inhabits one hexagonal cell of the wasps' nest. After the queen lays her eggs, she guards them as they hatch into larvae. The larvae are fed on digested insects, and fresh or rotting meat. Fully formed larvae close each cell with silk and spin a cocoon. Four to six weeks after the egg is laid the larva pupates into an adult worker, and helps to raise the next generation of wasps. Magnification: x15 when printed 10 centimetres wide.
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