Portal:Arthropods

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Arthropods Portal

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Arthropods make up the largest phylum of animals (Phylum Arthropoda) and include the insects, arachnids, crustaceans and others. More than 80% of described living animal species are arthropods, with over a million modern species described and a fossil record reaching back to the late Proterozoic era. Arthropods are common throughout marine, freshwater, terrestrial, and even aerial environments, and includes various symbiotic and parasitic forms. They range in size from microscopic plankton (~¼ mm) up to forms several metres across. Arthropods are characterised by the possession of a segmented body with appendages on each segment. They have a dorsal heart and a ventral nervous system. All arthropods are covered by a hard exoskeleton made of chitin, a polysaccharide which protects against trauma and desiccation. They shed this covering periodically when moulting.

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Two illustrations of a large black butterfly with colourful marking on the distal parts of its wings.
The Madagascan sunset moth or simply sunset moth, Chrysiridia rhipheus, is a day-flying moth of the Uraniidae family. It is considered to be one of the most impressive and beautiful Lepidoptera. Famous worldwide, it is featured in most coffee table books on the Lepidoptera and is much sought after by collectors. It is very colourful, though the iridescent parts of the wings do not have pigment; rather the colours originate from optical interference. Adult moths have a wingspan of 7–9 centimetres (2.8–3.5 in).

The moth was considered to be a butterfly by Dru Drury, who described it in 1773 and placed it in the genus Papilio. Jacob Hübner placed it in the moth genus Chrysiridia in 1823. Later redescriptions led to junior synonyms such as Chrysiridia madagascariensis (Lesson, 1831). At first the moth was thought to be from China or Bengal, but was later found to be endemic to Madagascar. It is found throughout the year in most parts of the island, with peak populations between March and August, and smallest numbers between October and December.

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An orange-red lobster-like animal with no claws, seen from the side.

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Dozens of barnacles abut on a rock. Each has a thick white wall surrounding a rounded kite-shaped centre of four plates.
Cscr-featured.svg Credit: Michael Maggs

Chthamalus stellatus is a barnacle found in the Atlantic Ocean from Shetland to southern Europe.

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indicates an extinct taxon.

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  • Start a new article. Arthropods cover an huge range of taxa and other topics, so there will always be plenty of missing articles. Some which have been explicitly requested are listed here.
  • Clean up existing articles. Lists of articles needing cleanup are available either grouped by the work needed or ungrouped.
  • Expand an existing article. Existing articles are often incomplete and missing information on key aspects of the topic. It is particularly important that the most widely read articles be broad in their scope. Wikipedia:WikiProject Arthropods/Popular pages (updated monthly) shows the number of views each article gets, along with assessments of its quality and importance. Articles with higher importance ratings and greater numbers of views are the priority for article improvements, but almost all our articles would benefit from expansion. Stubs can be found in Category:Arthropod stubs and its subcategories.

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