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Tarsal and Labellar Taste Hairs of Calliphora Vicina Robineau-Desvoidy: Location, Sensitivity To NaCl

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image of Netherlands Journal of Zoology
For more content, see Archives Néerlandaises de Zoologie (Vol 1-17) and Animal Biology (Vol 53 and onwards).

In both males and females of the bluebottle, Calliphora vicina, the labellar hairs are arranged in a systematic pattern, so that the hairs can be identified individually. The hair patterns on the two labellar lobes are mirror images of each other. The relatively long hairs of two of the labellar rows-the "aboral and adoral row"-and the long tarsal hairs on prothoracic legs have a chemoreceptor function. The responses elicited in these hairs by 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, and 1/16 M NaCl were compared with each other. The number of sense cells active varied from 0 to 3 in all three groups of hairs. Two types of cells were recognized: P cells and N cells, responding positively and not or negatively, respectively, to the change from 1/4 to 1/2 M. In aboral hairs 0, 1, or 2 P cells were found; in adoral and tarsal hairs only 0 or 1 P cell was present. The sensitivity of these cells to NaCI, tested at 1/2 M, was highest in aboral hairs, intermediate in tarsal hairs, and lowest in adoral hairs. Tarsal hairs contained 0, 1, or 2, aboral hairs 0, 1, 2, or 3 and adoral hairs 1 or 2 N cells. Adoral N cells appeared to respond most sharply to changes in NaCl concentration. The number of P and N cells to a hair varied independently of the type of hair within a given group. In all three groups of hairs the combination 1P + 1N was most frequently found. For both P and N cells variation in response between topographically the "same" hairs (on opposite sides of the body or in different flies) is as great as the variation between "different" hairs.

Affiliations: 1: ( Zoological Laboratory, University of Groningen, Haren, The Netherlands


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