Feeding apparatus in the scorpion,Heterometrus fulvipes
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The arachnids capture their prey, mince it and suck the juices through the pumping action of their pharynx. Although the chelicerae, the labrum and coxal endites of the first few paired prosomal appendages are known to be associated with feeding, the exact contribution of each of these has not been clearly known. The present investigation throws light on this aspect of feeding in the scorpion,Heterometrus fulvipes. There is a well-organised feeding apparatus with three components, the grinding mill, strainer and a sensory complement. The grinder is made up of the coxal endites of the first and second pair of ambulatory legs. The second coxal endite has a highly ramified sunken gutter system that conveys the liquid extracts of the prey to the mouth. The long hollow setae of the labrum and the coxal endites form an effective strainer and guard the mouth from being blocked or plugged. The sensory complement comprises short thin-walled pegs with clusters of sense cells at their bases. An explanation of hissing and stridulation in scorpions has been offered.
KeywordsSense Cell Feeding Apparatus Sensory Complement Oral Aperture Iron Alum
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