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Tiger Beetle (Cosmodela aurulenta)

family Cicindelinae

The tiger beetles are a large group of beetles known for their aggressive predatory habits and running speed. The fastest species of tiger beetle can run at a speed of 9 km/h (5.6 mph), which, relative to its body length, is about 22 times the speed of former Olympic sprinter Michael Johnson,the equivalent of a human running at 480 miles per hour (770 km/h).
They live along sea and lake shores, on sand dunes, around lakebeds and on clay banks or woodland paths, being particularly fond of sandy surfaces. Tiger beetles are considered a good indicator species and have been used in ecological studies on biodiversity.

Pu’er, Yunnan, China

See more Chinese beetles on my Flickr site HERE

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Eight-spotted crab spider (Platythomisus octomaculatus)

The eight-spotted crab pider belongs to the Platythomisus, which is a genus of flattened crab spiders from Africa and Southern Asia. The eight-spotted crab spider is a rather rare species. One of the plants it has been found on is the yellow Hibiscus tiliaceus. In captivity it was observed to feed on bees.

photo credits: Nicky Bay, melvynyeo

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Olm (Proteus anguinus)

The olm, or proteus, is the only cave-dwelling chordate species found in Europe. In contrast to many amphibians, it is entirely aquatic, and it eats, sleeps, and breeds underwater.

Living in caves found in Dinaric Alps, it is endemic to the waters that flow underground through extensive limestone of karst of Central and Southeastern Europe, specifically the southern Slovenia, the Soča river basin near Trieste, Italy, southwestern Croatia, and Herzegovina.

This animal is most notable for its adaptations to a life of complete darkness in its underground habitat. The olm’s eyes are undeveloped, leaving it blind, while its other senses, particularly those of smell and hearing, are acutely developed. It also lacks any pigmentation in its skin. It has three toes on its forelimbs, but two toes on its hind feet. It also exhibits neoteny, retaining larval characteristics like external gills into adulthood.

The olm’s body is snakelike, 20–30 cm (8–12 in) long, with some specimens reaching up to 40 centimetres (16 in). The olm is extremely vulnerable to changes in its environment due to its adaptation to the specific conditions in caves.

On the IUCN Red List, the olm is listed as vulnerable because of its fragmented and limited distribution and ever-decreasing population.

photo credits: Boštjan Burger, mesozoico, slovenia, animalworld

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"Moon Crabs" (Family: Matutidae)

…are a family of Clappoid crabs which are widely distributed throughout the Indo-Pacific region, including the Red Sea. Like the unrelated swimming crabs (Portunidae) the legs of Matutids are specially adapted for swimming and digging. However, unlike Portunids which only have the lack pair of legs modified for swimming all five pair of Matutid legs are modified. Moon crabs are known to be “aggressive predators”, feeding on a range of invertebrates. 



Image(s): ふうけ

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