The study of Acarology
By: M E Skeel
Acarology is the study of mites and ticks, animals which are classified in the Order Acari of the Class Arachnida, which is part of the Phylum Arthropoda. As such they have typical arthropod characteristics, including an exoskeleton which they have to shed to grow, and...
Butterflies and moths
By: M E Skeel
Butterflies and moths belong to the insect order Lepidoptera, which means scaly-winged. These scales give butterflies their colour and moths their camouflage. For the most part, moths are nocturnal while butterflies are diurnal. The Lepidoptera are holometabolous insects which means they have complete life cycles...
What are pycnogonids?
By: M E Skeel
Pycnogonids are a Class of Arthropods called sea spiders, because they resemble spiders and live in the oceans. They are slow-moving, crawling predators, usually white or pale yellow or orange in colour. Most have 8 jointed legs (although a few have 10 or 12 legs)...
By: M E Skeel
Kinorhynchs are tiny marine worms that almost no one except invertebrate zoologists have even heard of, much less seen. Their common names are 'mud dragons' and spiny-headed worms. The name Kinorhynch means movable snout, which refers to the way they can pull in their heads...
Insects and their importance
By: M E Skeel
Because most of us don't eat insects, we tend to think they aren't that important except in negative ways, but in fact it could be argued that without insects we wouldn't even be here. Insects are of major importance in terrestrial ecosystems both as food...
What are Priapulids?
By: M E Skeel
Priapulids are worm-like pseudocoelomate invertebrates that appear in the fossil record some 500 million years ago in the Cambrian Period. They have survived virtually unchanged up to the present and so qualify as living fossils. There are only 16 living species of the phylum Priapula...
By: Janet Grischy
Butterflies, skippers, and moths are all members of the order Lepidoptera. Among them, moths have by far the largest numbers. There are five families of butterflies worldwide, one family of the closely related skippers, and 125 families of moths.Many people wonder how to tell...
What are the Onychophora?
By: M E Skeel
Velvet worms. Nice name, but what are they? Why are they in their own Phylum, the Onychophora? Where are they found and why have most people never heard of them, much less seen them? Velvet worms only occur in remnants of the ancient ecosystems such...
By: M E Skeel
Most worms aren't pretty. Earthworms may be useful and important biologically but they aren't exactly photogenic Some are downright revolting: tapeworms, liver flukes, pin worms, round worms. There are so many sorts of worms that it has taken scientists a great deal of study to...
What are tardigrades? (Invertebrate Phylum Tardigrada)
By: M E Skeel
Tardigrades. What are they? Their name means 'slow walkers' and their common name is 'water bear' because they do have a rather bear-like appearance under the microscope, if you ignore the fact that they have eight legs. They have also been called moss piglets. They...

 

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