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March 4, 2012
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Moulting Katydid by melvynyeo Moulting Katydid by melvynyeo
In arthropods, such as insects, arachnids and crustaceans, moulting is the shedding of the exoskeleton (which is often called its shell), typically to let the organism grow. This process is called ecdysis. It is commonly said that ecdysis is necessary because the exoskeleton is rigid and cannot grow like skin, but this is simplistic, ignoring the fact that Chelonia do not shed even the rigid external keratinous shell, and that most Arthropoda with soft, flexible skins also undergo ecdysis. The subject is far more complex than a matter of skin rigidity; it includes considerations such as nature of metamorphosis, the differences between the morphology of successive instars, and the fact that a new skin includes new external lenses for eyes etc (compare this with the replacement of a snake's brille in sloughing). The new exoskeleton is initially soft but hardens after the moulting of the old exoskeleton. The old exoskeleton is referred to as "exuviae".

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:iconrheasbuggery:
Quite amazing. The antennae look so delicate!
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:iconmaddlouise:
MaddLouise Mar 7, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Thanks for sharing! that's definitely a site :D
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:iconpvven:
Great timelapse!
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:iconamaranth333:
amaranth333 Mar 4, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Its like I just witnessed an episode from my favorite documentary "Life In the Undergrowth." This is spectacular!!!!!!!
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:iconzanture-angel:
Incredibly beautiful
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:iconalonir:
Alonir Mar 4, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
:noes: That's creepy
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:iconrozen85:
Holy cow, the shell looks so small after it moulted!
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