oa African Zoology - Studies on Thysanura. II. Orientation reactions of Machiloides delanyi Wygodzinsky and Ctenolepisma longicaudata Escherich to temperature, light and atmospheric humidity

Volume 3, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1562-7020
  • E-ISSN: 2224-073X



Investigations into the responses of Thysanura to their physical environment have been confined to those Lepismatida regarded as household pests (Meyer 1932, Lindsay 1940, Crome 1955). The Machilida have not been studied at all in this respect. The Thysanura occupy a key position in hexapod evolution. These animals are better able to conserve their body water than are many of the species constituting the typical fores cryptofauna, but they have not achieved the degree of impermeability shown by the Pterygota (Heeg 1967). The extant cryptofaunal arthropods are physiologically the nearest approach to the ancestral land arthropods available for study, and, where studied, have proved to be poorly adapted to withstand the rigours of terrestrial life outside their sheltered habitat.

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