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Magnified 29X, this scanning electron microscopic (SEM) image revealed some of the morphologic features encountered at the distal tip of a male eastern carpenter bee's, Xylocopa virginica, abdomen. Note the absence of a stinger, for male carpenter bees have no stinger, and therefore, cannot sting, while females do have a stinger, and though they can sting, they very rarely do. The body of X. virginica is covered by a coating of sensorial hairs, known as setae. The material from which these sensory structures are constructed is known as chitin, and is the same proteinaceous material that created its tough exoskeleton. These setae, as well as the antennae, are sensorial in nature, and transmit changes in the bee's environment such as fluctuations in temperature, chemistry, and wind speed and direction.
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Content Providers(s):CDC/ Janice Haney Carr, Oren Mayer
Creation Date:
Photo Credit:Janice Haney Carr
CDC Organization
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Copyright Restrictions:None - This image is in the public domain and thus free of any copyright restrictions. As a matter of courtesy we request that the content provider be credited and notified in any public or private usage of this image.