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Entomology Help Needed


Bullsnake

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I picked up some shale yesterday to look for conodonts, and I guess this little guy thawed out and started running in and out of the field of view.

After chasing it around, I finally got it onto a piece of paper, and had to dispatch it with a Qtip to get a good look. It was very fast!

The hillside I collected the shale from is nearly barren of any vegetation.

So I'm just curious as to what it is, and if there is concern about more of them invading the house!

It's ~2mm, magnified 40X.

post-5130-0-76223000-1358371940_thumb.jpg

Oh, almost forgot...Lansing group, Stanton fm.,Eudora sh. :P

Steve

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Looks a bit like a Formosan Termite.

"There has been an alarming increase in the number of things I know nothing about." - Ashleigh Ellwood Brilliant

“Try to learn something about everything and everything about something.” - Thomas Henry Huxley

>Paleontology is an evolving science.

>May your wonders never cease!

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Hi Bullsnake,

It's not a termite. It's a book louse order Psocoptera, likely family Liposcelidae. They are indeed very fast! They are often found in the dead of winter as they are pretty cold tolerant. They are harmless little guys that feed on detritus. You can often find thousands of them in old bird nests ... filthy creatures birds. :P

Edited by AgrilusHunter

"They ... savoured the strange warm glow of being much more ignorant than ordinary people, who were only ignorant of ordinary things."

-- Terry Pratchett

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Hi Bullsnake,

It's not a termite. It's a book louse order Psocoptera, likely family Liposcelidae. They are indeed very fast! They are often found in the dead of winter as they are pretty cold tolerant. They are harmless little guys that feed on detritus. You can often find thousands of them in old bird nests ... filthy creatures birds. :P

Oh no, not my detritus!

Really though, are my books in peril?

Steve

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Oh no, not my detritus!

Really though, are my books in peril?

Ha! Not unless your books are damp. For the most part they live in damp environments. They like to eat mold and decaying matter. In books they tend to eat the bindings, lots of starch in the glues, but only if the books are damp or if the humidity is very high. In most modern homes the humidity is so low that these guys are no longer a nuisance and most people wouldn't even recognize them. Hope this helps.

Edited by AgrilusHunter

"They ... savoured the strange warm glow of being much more ignorant than ordinary people, who were only ignorant of ordinary things."

-- Terry Pratchett

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Looks a bit like a Formosan Termite.

Had me worryin' there, Auspex. :o

Ha! Not unless your books are damp. For the most part they live in damp environments. They like to eat mold and decaying matter. In books they tend to eat the bindings, lots of starch in the glues, but only if the books are damp or if the humidity is very high. In most modern homes the humidity is so low that these guys are no longer a nuisance and most people wouldn't even recognize them. Hope this helps.

Thank you for the info! :)

Steve

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