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Backswimmer

Notonecta sp.

Description:

About 1 cm in length. Last pair of legs are elongated and paddle-like. They are called backswimmers for their habit of swimming upside down, as shown in the photo. These are predatory insects and can bite people if handled roughly.

Habitat:

Ponds, lakes and rivers.

Notes:

These fascinating insects are quite common in streams and ponds. The subject of the photo is in a typical 45 degree head-down, belly-up posture of a resting backswimmer. These air-breathing aquatic insects prolong their dives by storing air as a bubble on the underside of their abdomen and under the wings. Since they breathe through their abdomen, that is what is thrust up through the water's surface to obtain air, again as seen in the photo.

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3 Comments

Gordon Dietzman
Gordon Dietzman 12 years ago

Thanks harsuame and Gerardo. I've been experimenting with photographing aquatic life in a custom-built aquarium. The aquarium is only a couple of centimeters thick so I can control the movements of the insects and, maybe, small fish. But it allows me to see and photograph interesting behaviors.

rutasandinas
rutasandinas 12 years ago

Nice!!

Gerardo Aizpuru
Gerardo Aizpuru 12 years ago

This is incredible Gordon !
Wonderful photo!

Gordon Dietzman
Spotted by
Gordon Dietzman

Wisconsin, USA

Spotted on Apr 13, 2012
Submitted on Apr 13, 2012

Spotted for Mission

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