DR JEREMY BURGESS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR JEREMY BURGESS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
A common earwig, Forficula auricularia, with her eggs.The picture shows a female earwig guarding a batch of eggs (yellow) within the soil of a pot containing a strawberry plant. The plant roots are visible to the right of the picture. The earwig's pincers (cerci) are visible at the bottom (to right) of the picture, with the abdominal segments (reddish brown) above. The short tegmina (wing cases) are pale brown, below the insect's head. Earwigs belong to the order Dermaptera; they differ from beetles (Coleoptera) by having short wing cases that do not cover the abdomen, as shown here. In Coleoptera the cases are called elytra, cover the abdomen and contribute to the mechanical robustness of beetles. Female earwigs show famously good maternal behaviour. The mother guards her eggs and continues to protect the brood even after the young emerge from the soil and become active above ground.
Model release not required. Property release not required.