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Unknown animal

 
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Picaflor



Joined: 25 Jan 2016
Posts: 14
Location: Uruguay

PostPosted: Thu Nov 16, 2017 7:27 pm    Post subject: Unknown animal Reply with quote

Hello

I found this about 10cm long animal on the beach in a bit water living (in Uruguay).



Any idea what this it?

Best Regards
Roger
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rjlittlefield
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Joined: 01 Aug 2006
Posts: 18235
Location: Richland, Washington State, USA

PostPosted: Thu Nov 16, 2017 7:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This looks like a water scorpion, Hemiptera:Nepidae, possibly genus Ranatra.

--Rik
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Picaflor



Joined: 25 Jan 2016
Posts: 14
Location: Uruguay

PostPosted: Thu Nov 16, 2017 8:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Many thanks Rik.
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anvancy



Joined: 05 Dec 2009
Posts: 309
Location: India

PostPosted: Thu Nov 16, 2017 11:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

looks different for a scorpion.

Thanks for sharing.
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rjlittlefield
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 17, 2017 12:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This "water scorpion" is an insect, a member of the "true bugs", order Hemiptera, family Nepidae.

The common name is because of superficial resemblance of some species, notably the grasping front legs and long tails. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nepidae .

By the way, the common name is spelled either with or without a space, so "water scorpion" or "waterscorpion". Wikipedia has it without; the reference book on my shelf has it with; search on "Nepidae" shows about an equal split.

--Rik
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Picaflor



Joined: 25 Jan 2016
Posts: 14
Location: Uruguay

PostPosted: Fri Nov 17, 2017 5:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for your informations.

Roger
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Troels



Joined: 15 Feb 2016
Posts: 272
Location: Denmark, Engesvang

PostPosted: Fri Nov 17, 2017 2:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We have an identical looking species of Ranatra in ponds in Denmark too.
It takes this strange appearance when dead.
When living the two tail appendices are kept together forming a tube used for taking in air from he surface. Thus it can survive periods with low oxygen in the water.
Its two front legs are armored with Praying-Mantis-like claws and it hunts in the same manner: waiting with lifted front legs for a prey to pass close and then grasp it in a flash.

Many years ago I kept one in an aquarium for months observing it hunting and eating. An interesting guy but unfortunately it has become rather uncommon.
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Troels



Joined: 15 Feb 2016
Posts: 272
Location: Denmark, Engesvang

PostPosted: Fri Nov 17, 2017 2:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just checked the Wikipedia links mentioned aboved.
It looks like there is a little confusion about the trivial names.

The name "Scorpion bug" seems to belong to the shorter and fatter Nepa.
Indeed it is this animal we call "Skorpion taege" in Denmark.

The long and thin Rantra is called "Stick bug" at wikipedia.
Corresponding to "Stavtaege" in Danish.

They both belong to the same family Nepidae.
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rjlittlefield
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Joined: 01 Aug 2006
Posts: 18235
Location: Richland, Washington State, USA

PostPosted: Fri Nov 17, 2017 4:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

From https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ranatra :
Quote:
Ranatra is a genus of generally slender predatory members of the family Nepidae, known as water scorpions or water stick-insects.

Another example of why common names are often problematic.

--Rik
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