Spider Mites

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ccasionally when I am outside looking for bugs to photograph, I will notice tiny yellow specks moving around on the ground. Last week, I found several concentrated around some pollen that had fallen from an iris flower, so I took the opportunity to get a closer look at these creatures with some macro photographs. I believe they are a kind of spider mite (Tetranychidae family), but that’s as much as I know so far.

 

 

Do you know what the fastest land animal is in the world, relative to body size? Yes, it’s a mite (Paratarsotomus macropalpis)! I have no idea if the mites in my backyard are this exact species, but they are incredibly fast for their size. Here is a short video clip I shot of them last year:

 

 

I really want to know how they are able to accelerate so quickly. They would be extraordinary athletes if they were humans!

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