Jumping Bristletails of Columbia County, Oregon

Jumping Bristletails are insects of the Order Archaeognatha, an ancient lineage only distantly related to all others. Fossils of this group can be found going back nearly 400 million years. They require damp areas, often hiding under objects. Their unique common name comes from the ability to flex their abdomen and jump up to 12 inches into the air when threatened.

Bristletails appear similar to Silverfish, but Bristletails have a more upright (not flattened) body, smaller heads, and their middle “tail” organ is longer in the middle than on the sides. Individual bristletail species are difficult to distinguish and there has been little study of them in Oregon, so I am simply posting a range of bristletail images that have been observed in the state.

Bristletail from the Powers area (photo © mbstevens)
Bristletail from the Columbia Gorge. (photo © Eric Carlson)
Bristletail from the Selma area (photo © Lee Cain)
Bristletail Archaeognatha from Tillamook, Oregon
Bristletail from the Tillamook area (photo © Ken Chamberlain)
Bristletail from the Astoria area. (photo © Philipp Wickey)
Bristletail from the Estacada area (photo © brnhn)

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