Ultrastructure of Insect Sensilla
The cuticle of insects is largely responsible for the success of these terrestrial arthropods. It is rigid and hard in areas requiring support and protection and flexible in regions associated with locomotion and the detection of mechanical stimuli. It is highly impermeable and restricts water loss from the body surface. Cuticle does not expand, thereby limiting growth, making it necessary for growing insects to periodically shed the existing cuticle (a process called molting) and to replace it with another, larger one. The insensitivity of insect integument also limits the reception of stimuli. This insensitivity is remedied by the presence of transcuticular sensory mechanisms, each specifically designed to detect one of a wide range of stimulus types.
Sensory perception for taste, smell, touch, sound, vision, proprioception, and geo-, thermo-, and hygroreception involves a three-stage process consisting of coupling, transduction, and encoding. Coupling connects the stimulus to the...
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