Ariel Conservation Education Research Sustainable Agriculture

Insect IDs

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Recently, I was asked why entomologists spend so much time google image searching arthropods for something similar to a specimen they are trying to ID.  I can’t speak for anyone else, but for me, it seems like there are many, many families I am less familiar with, and google images are an excellent way to explore these.

For example, this extremely small beetle pretty much blew my mind when I saw it under the scope.  I had not even a vague idea of what it might be.  Today, however, when looking at the characteristics of Anobiidae (on google images, of course), I came across the family Heteroceridae.  This is not a family we had learned about in my taxonomy course, and upon further exploration, it very well could be the group to which this tiny little beetle belongs.  I’ll have to take more pictures and look at it under the scope again, but I at least feel like I’m getting closer.

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