Saturday, 8 October 2011

Trilobite Larvae

Trilobite larvae
The ‘trilobite larvae’ known occurring in the South East Asian rain forests are neotenic females of the beetle genus Duliticola (Coleoptera:Lycidae). Some can glow in the dark!
The appellation of "Trilobite Larva" has been in use for many years to designate the lavas of certain highly aberrant malacoderm beetles. These attain a length of one to several inches, with wide, greatly flattened body. The three thoracic segments are expanded laterally forming a sort of carapace and the abdominal segments bear long, curved projections. These gross characters give the larvae an almost comical, but nevertheless extraordinarily striking resemblance to certain long-extinct trilobites. The first reference to these larvae appears to be that of Perty made over a century ago, in 1831. His account relates to a form from Java which Westwood figured in his "Modern Classification of 1nsects" a few years later. With his usual taxonomic acumen, Westwood suspected that this larva belonged to some species of the family Lycidse. Since that time a number of additional species have been discovered in various parts of the Indomalayan region to which they they are apparently restricted. They seem to be best represented in Borneo where at least six distinct types have been discovered. These have been dealt with at length by Mjoberg in 19252 who gives an historical and descriptive account that need not be repeated here. Mjoberg was successful in rearing one Bornean species to maturity and found that the large lavas are females which are destined to undergo practically no external change on becoming adult. Source

Interesting read here

No comments:

Post a Comment