Monday, July 25, 2011


My fascination with the Family Cleridae has grown beyond the aesthetic. Not only have they been abundant where I've hiked so far this summer, they alight on a wide variety of flowers and are often found crawling around among many other fascinating bugs. Early in the morning it is cold enough that the Clerids are disinclined to fly so photography is easy. During hot afternoons they are quite skittish and will fly as my camera approaches. In researching their habits, i came across the term "hypermetamorphosis." Turns out it's a term in psychology as well as entomology. With respect to entomology it refers to insects that undergo several changes in larval type on their way to adulthood. Each larval stage might look quite different from the others and have quite different habits. Thus, in its development, the clerid might have intimate feeding arrangements with many other bugs and plants. Among others, their preferred is often bark beetles and other longhorn beetles that damage trees. They also get involved with bees and pollen in interesting ways. I'm going to save further details for a more developed essay on the subject, but meanwhile, I'd recommend some internet browsing on the subject. The Wikkipedia article is not a bad place to start. Then look into the term's relevance to psychology. The term was apparently coined in the realm of psychology in 1859, the year that Darwin's famous tome shook up the world.

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