Itsy Bitsy Spiders, Mites and More
Bugs can get small enough to skirt the limits of invisibility – but not quite. All bugs can be seen, if barely, by the naked eye. The tiniest creatures can still fly, crawl, and in some cases inflict misery upon humans.
Take sarcoptes scabiei, or the notorious mite that produces scabies. Another mite, the minute Demodex folliculorum, causes terrible itching in the eyelash follicles of unfortunate humans.
The smallest known ant is, compared with the queen of its own species, about on the scale of a mouse to a hippo. This tiny insect will cling to the queen’s legs to hitch a ride, and is an amazing eight tenths of one millimeter long.
The most diminutive of flying insects is the wonderfully named fairfly from the insect family Mymaridae. The smallest variety was discovered in Hawaii in 2000 by John Huber. Its entire body amounts to no more than 160 micrometers in the smaller females. This is the diameter of an average, single human hair.
Just how small can insects get? Huber postulates that they do need enough mass to hold their organs, carry their eggs, and to include enough cells to have working