• Question: What insects can live in the coldest environment?

    Asked by WilliamW on 30 Jun 2020.
    • Photo: Gulnar Abdullayeva

      Gulnar Abdullayeva answered on 30 Jun 2020:


      Hi William, it is an interesting question.

      It is known that Belgica antarctica, the Antarctic midge, is an endemic species in Antarctica. This species is so resilient to cold temperature and spends its entire life on the continent. They can even survive during partial desiccation, the loss of over two-thirds of their body water. The flightlessness of Belgica antarctica can be an adaptation to prevent wind effect.
      Besides, the Antarctic flea Glaciopsyllus antarcticus is a parasite which lives on seabirds in Antarctica. It is assumed that they live in the nest itself and to be found on the body of the host only during feeding.

      You can find more information here: https://institutions.newscientist.com/article/dn21231-zoologger-chill-out-with-the-worlds-coldest-insect/

      Hope it helps. Thank you.

    • Photo: Paul Eggleton

      Paul Eggleton answered on 2 Jul 2020:


      Also, Gyrllobatta (“ice crawlers”), live in glaciers and ice caves. Some of them like it so cold that they will die in the warmth of the palm of your hand.

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