Springtails, or Collembola, are minute soft bodied insects which, although the number of species is small, sometimes attract attention by the numbers in which, under favorable conditions, they appear. They have been somewhat overlooked by workers in the different phases of biology; no doubt a natural consequence of their small size (1-4 mm.), and inconspicuous, retiring habits. They generally live in organic debris, or wherever there is sufficient moisture to support their existence. But for a part of one family, in which there is a poorly developed tracheal system, the respiration in this order is cutaneous and the skin must be kept moist in order that the respiratory processes may function. The integument is so delicate that in low humidities the body dries out rapidly. The members of some genera bear an armor of scales, and within this protective covering they may venture into a more dry atmosphere than their scaleless relatives.
Proceedings of the Iowa Academy of Science
©1930 Iowa Academy of Science, Inc.
Mills, Harlow B.
"Springtails as Economic Insects,"
Proceedings of the Iowa Academy of Science, 37(1), 389-392.
Available at: https://scholarworks.uni.edu/pias/vol37/iss1/107