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 Some days, I just love my job . . .

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Mr. Mordax
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PostSubject: Some days, I just love my job . . .   12/30/2008, 1:27 am

'Cause look what my colleague found trying to escape from a tub of hazelnut orchard debris:

(Pics clickable for zoom)









For an idea of size, the delicup he's in has a diameter of about an inch. I haven't officially measured him (her? how do you sex these things?) but he's probably around 5mm. Pretty good-sized, actually.

Be kinda cool if it were a gravid female, but then I'd have to find something like mites to feed the young'uns.

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PostSubject: Re: Some days, I just love my job . . .   12/30/2008, 2:42 am

A pseudoscorpion! awesome.

pretty neat. Smile

And if you need a pectine shot to sex these guys I think your outa luck Razz
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PostSubject: Re: Some days, I just love my job . . .   12/30/2008, 4:45 am

SWEEEEEEEET!!!!!

You lucky so and so!
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PostSubject: Re: Some days, I just love my job . . .   12/30/2008, 1:14 pm

I recently found a person selling those. I was considering buy a group. Pretty cool.
http://www.bugsincyberspace.com/browse1.htm
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Mr. Mordax
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PostSubject: Re: Some days, I just love my job . . .   12/30/2008, 1:30 pm

No pectines on these, Calum. But I found some interesting stuff about their life history:

Penn State Entomology Department wrote:
The mating behavior of C. cancroides is interesting. Mature males create a mating territory 1 to 2 centimeters in size. They rub their ventral surface on the center of this territory, which some arachnologists postulate as pheromone placement. When a female enters this area, the male begins a mating dance by rapidly vibrating his body and displaying his pedipalps. He deposits a sac that contains sperm (spermatophore) on the substrate, moves backwards over it, and guides the female on top of the sac, where she then picks up the sperm. The entire mating process takes from 10 minutes to 1 hour.

The female produces 20 to 40 eggs that she carries beneath her abdomen. After the young house pseudoscorpions, which look like small adults, emerge, they stay with the female for several days, sometimes riding on her back. The entire brood then disperses. This process, from egg deposit to brood dispersal, can take 3 weeks.

The young house pseudoscorpions molt three times before adulthood; these stages are protonymph, deutonymph, and tritonymph. The developmental period is temperature dependent and takes 10 to 24 months. Adults do not molt and can live for 3 or 4 years.

Older house pseudoscorpions are less agile. They often have difficulty climbing smooth surfaces and are less likely to right themselves after flipping onto their backs. These factors, plus their increased visibility due to their large size, may explain why only adult specimens are submitted for identification.

Key points:

A) Reproduction is almost identical to Amblypygids

B) They mature at 4th instar

C) Mine is at least a year old

D) Mine isn't terribly old because it's still agile enough to climb smooth surfaces without a problem

E) I'll probably get a couple years out of this guy

Very Happy

Sean, that link is pretty cool. From the thumbnail I can tell it's a different species from mine. If mine doesn't turn out to be a gravid female, I may go out to some orchards with a flashlight and more collection vials. Wink

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PostSubject: Re: Some days, I just love my job . . .   12/30/2008, 1:41 pm

Very interesting little critters, I'm surprised they live for such a long time. what do you plan to feed this little guy?
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PostSubject: Re: Some days, I just love my job . . .   12/30/2008, 2:04 pm

Either predatory mites I find in my other tanks or baby cockroaches. B. laterallis and the lobsters are small enough at early instars.

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PostSubject: Re: Some days, I just love my job . . .   12/30/2008, 3:12 pm

Awsome man. I was just talking to Pete, the owner of that site, and I think I might get a small group. If yours turns out to be a gravid female or you collect some please let me know. Id like to keep some. Judging from the lengthy Growing process it maybe a while before you have a good viable group if she is gravid. Keep us posted.
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PostSubject: Re: Some days, I just love my job . . .   12/30/2008, 6:26 pm

you lucky lucky LUCKY person. I have never seen them for sale anywhere in the UK.

I'm jealous Smile
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PostSubject: Re: Some days, I just love my job . . .   12/31/2008, 7:01 pm

I went to check the park across from me this morning to see if I could find any more.

I didn't find any, but I found plenty of suitable prey. Lots of springtails (at least four species), a few mites (three or four species), and a host of other tiny arthropods. I also found some predators (many small spiders).

I think I'll try again when it warms up a bit.

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PostSubject: Re: Some days, I just love my job . . .   1/1/2009, 1:23 pm

hmmm... i have seen one of those before but there was an assasin bug next to it on a log that looked more interesting...
it doesnt have compound eyes!
are those the same kind of hazelnut that are in the uk? i want some.
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PostSubject: Re: Some days, I just love my job . . .   1/1/2009, 4:59 pm

It was from some commercial orchard, probably the Barcelona cultivar.

By the way, the other weird critter I saw was a Dipluran -- one of the three groups of non-insect hexapods. Pic here. This one was one of the typically small species, a little under a centimeter in length.

I'd only ever seen one Dipluran before, and it was one of the large species in family Japygidae -- about an inch long with a pinchy butt, looking a little like a beetle larva.

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PostSubject: Re: Some days, I just love my job . . .   1/1/2009, 5:20 pm

mike; do these Diplurans live on or around bodies of water? I've seen something that looks very simmilar to that in the Emp's water dish. I'm pretty sure they are springtails; but they do look quite like diplurians.
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PostSubject: Re: Some days, I just love my job . . .   1/1/2009, 5:25 pm

You probably saw a springtail. Some species are known for being able to float on / bounce off of the surface of water.

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PostSubject: Re: Some days, I just love my job . . .   1/1/2009, 6:05 pm

Yeah, that was my thought. oh well Razz
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PostSubject: Re: Some days, I just love my job . . .   1/1/2009, 6:35 pm

so... how big is the largest pseudoscorpion??
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PostSubject: Re: Some days, I just love my job . . .   1/1/2009, 7:16 pm

12 millimeters, and it lives somewhere in Africa.

So I just got back from the park again. I caught a few springtails (including the largest I've ever seen; it's bigger than the pseudoscorp) as well as a strange-looking mite (six tiny legs for walking, two long ones for tapping all around as its walking).

All the stuff I was seeing led me to kind of a cool idea . . . if I were ever in a bugzoo in a large permanent location, I'd start a "rotting log" exhibit. Set up a big, wet, rotting log in a cool (temperature-wise) glass case, and having macro photos surrounding the display of every invertebrate living on / in the log.

Just today I saw springtails, centipedes, millipedes, mites, snails, diplurans, isopods, dipterans, spiders, slugs, and gods only know what else.

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PostSubject: Re: Some days, I just love my job . . .   1/1/2009, 7:28 pm

Mike, that's a really good idea! you should definetly give it a try once you've got the time and space. I want to try it now lol.
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PostSubject: Re: Some days, I just love my job . . .   1/6/2009, 1:10 pm

Do these glow under UV?
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PostSubject: Re: Some days, I just love my job . . .   1/6/2009, 1:18 pm

Haven't checked, but I don't believe so. The only arthropods that fluoresce that I'm aware of are scorpions.

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