Viewed under a moderately-high magnification 415x, this scanning electron micrograph (SEM) depicted the surface details of an unidentified insect's wing. The organism was discovered on the grounds of the Decatur, Georgia suburbs. The scalar structures, though numerous, were very light, thereby, adding very little to the overall wing-weight. These scales not only add colorful demarcating characteristics to the wings, distinguishing species from one another, as well as sexual differentiation, but act as thermoregulatory control mechanisms, thereby, insulating the insect on colder days, and dissipating excess heat on warmer days.
CDC/ Janice Carr
December 2, 2012
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