Everyone interested in arthropods has a favorite group. Mine is clearly collembola. I became interested in them early in my career as an entomology graduate student at the University of Illinois. They’re such a unique group. Significant decomposers of organic matter. Recessed mouthparts. Furcula and tenaculum. Collophore. Huge morphological diversity. Sperm packets. Parthenogenesis in some. What’s not to love???
I would like to go back and study them again. Until that time, a summer goal is to get some great springtail images. The image above, taken a few days ago, is my first live collembola image taken with a camera. Gotta love this macrophotography technology!