Less is more

At 1.3 millimetres long, Liocyrtusa vittata is less than your average beetle, and tricky to identify even under a microscope, but it’s very scarce.

I’m wondering whether its scarcity has anything to do with its diminutive size. I’m not sure I would have noticed it ‘in the field’ but was able to recognize it as more than a shiny speck of protoplasm when it landed on the old sheet I was using as a backdrop to the mercury vapour moth light I’d lit up on 28 June 2011.

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