Swamp Bluet Damselfly

The Swamp Bluet (Coenagrion lyelli) is a medium-sized blue damselfly, an insect similar to a dragonfly, in the family Coenagrionidae. They live across the globe in most climates, near streams, pools, and lakes.

The Swamp Bluet male is bright blue with black markings. The abdomen is long and slender with ten segments.

It has compound eyes (like house flies) and three simple eyes (ocelli) on their foreheads. It has a small antenna.

The joint between head and prothorax is flexible, which enables the damselfly to swivel its head.

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Toxic Milkweed Grasshoppers

The Toxic Milkweed Grasshopper (Pyrgomorphidae) is an African grasshopper in the order Orthoptera.

Orthoptera insects include grasshoppers, crickets, and locusts. They have a cylindrical body with long back legs for jumping.

Adult Toxic Milkweek Grasshoppers are generally green, but juvenile grasshoppers, called nymphs, can be black. Other species may have different coloured nymphs.

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Ant Stomachs

Ants have two stomachs.

One stomach feeds the ant itself.

The second stomach is used to feed other ants in the colony, which the ant does by secreting liquids out of their body that other ants suck up.

This is called reciprocal feeding or trophallaxis.

External Covering: from skin and scales to fur and feathers

External covering is the outside appearance of an animal. Animals can have fur, feathers, hair, short hair, long hair, smooth hair, bristles, skin, thick skin, moist skin, dry skin, scales, waterproof scales, small scales, overlapping scales, spikes, hard shells, soft shells, smooth shells, rough shells, wool, or no covering at all.

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Sleeping animals: what’s the difference between hibernate, aestivate, dormant, lethargic, diurnal, nocturnal, and crepuscular?

Animals sleep. Some animals sleep at night, some animals sleep during the day, and some animals sleep in cold climates.

Animals that are diurnal are active mainly during the day and sleep at night.

Animals that are nocturnal are active mainly at night and sleep during the day.

Animals that are active mainly at dawn and dusk are crepuscular. They sleep during the day and during the night.

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Iridescent scales, feathers and shells

Iridescence means shiny with many colours. Many animals have iridescent colours.

Iridescence is structural colour from refracted light (crystals), diffraction gratings (feathers or butterfly wings), thin film (oily surfaces), multiple layer interference (nacre in shells), or 3-D arrays of spheres (opals).

The word iridescence comes from iris, the Greek word for rainbow. An iridescent object has many tones of colour. Iridescence creates colour by splitting and reflecting light from different structures – which is why it is often called structural colour.

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