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A boatload of ? (surface texture on spiracle of cutworm)

 
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rjlittlefield
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Joined: 01 Aug 2006
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Location: Richland, Washington State, USA

PostPosted: Fri Jun 03, 2011 12:07 am    Post subject: A boatload of ? (surface texture on spiracle of cutworm) Reply with quote

I was surprised by the appearance of this subject. Any guesses?

20X onto a 23 mm sensor, slight crop.



Crossed-eye stereo:



Focus stacked at 5 µm step, using Stackshot and Zerene Stacker, using a tripod-based setup similar to HERE.

--Rik

Edited: add ID and shooting info.
Edit #2: correct typo in title


Last edited by rjlittlefield on Mon Sep 12, 2011 8:51 am; edited 2 times in total
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jgknight



Joined: 05 Jul 2010
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Location: Wagga Wagga Australia

PostPosted: Fri Jun 03, 2011 2:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have no idea Rik.
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lauriek
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 03, 2011 7:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It looks a lot like pollen in a stamen but as that's what you'd expect that to look like I guess it's something different. Is it a large spiracle?
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Planapo



Joined: 07 Nov 2006
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Location: Germany, in the United States of Europe

PostPosted: Fri Jun 03, 2011 11:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Like Laurie, it reminds me of an anther with pollen grains inside. Sticky pollen can look like this. But then, that "boat" is so tiny ... Think

Hmm, well, at least it's spring and Rik could be following an old habit and ripping the flowers apart again. Smile Wink
Maybe from and orchid, they can be tiny ...

--Betty
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Harold Gough



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PostPosted: Fri Jun 03, 2011 11:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't know but the concavity in which it resides might be significant.

harold
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SONYNUT



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PostPosted: Fri Jun 03, 2011 4:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

eggs?
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rjlittlefield
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 03, 2011 11:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, it's quite puzzling. Even a closer crop doesn't seem to help my understanding. I really don't know what the details of this subject are...



--Rik
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rjlittlefield
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 04, 2011 1:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here is an even closer view, shot this time with Nikon CF Plan 50X 0.55 inf/- EPI ELWD on an ancient Vivitar 200mm f/3.5 tube lens. This may have been sharpened beyond the point of realism, but the enhanced surface texture helps to lock up the 3D impression. Focus-stacked at 2 µm step size using StackShot and Zerene Stacker in a horizontal platform setup similar to HERE.

Crossed-eye stereo.



--Rik

Edit: add shooting info.


Last edited by rjlittlefield on Tue Jun 07, 2011 1:23 pm; edited 1 time in total
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rjlittlefield
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 04, 2011 2:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh dear me -- I've gotten distracted and forgotten my manners! Embarassed

lauriek wrote:
Is it a large spiracle?

Just so -- at least for some definition of "large". The spiracle itself measures 0.44 mm in length.

The subject is a cutworm caterpillar, overall length 25 mm. I caught it eating the swelling buds on my grapevine several weeks ago, after noticing that the vine was gradually becoming denuded. I slipped the caterpillar under the microscope, was surprised by the appearance of the spiracles, and stashed it live in the refrigerator until I had some free time to photograph it. I intended to photograph it live, keeping it quiet by chilling, but that didn't work out very well and I ended up accidentally killing the beast by freezing it. The state as photographed in the initial posting here was freshly killed, rinsed in water and then in 99% isopropyl alcohol and briefly air-dried to remove surface moisture. For the 50X version, it has had some chance to dry out a little more.

I really do not know what the white lumps are. I presume that they are surface texture on the two main lips of the spiracle, but it's a mystery to me why they are so different from the surrounding cuticle. Time to study the literature, perhaps. These images have prompted me to read the discussion of spiracles and other respiratory apparatus in "The Insects / Structure and function" by R.F.Chapman. Fascinating stuff!

--Rik
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NikonUser



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PostPosted: Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

compare with
THIS IMAGE
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No man can be truly called an entomologist,
sir; the subject is too vast for any single human intelligence to grasp.”
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The Poet at the Breakfast Table.

Nikon camera, lenses and objectives
Olympus microscope and objectives
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rjlittlefield
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 09, 2011 11:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Further discussion THERE also.

--Rik
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