I visited West Campus, Peabody’s off-site storage facility, to visit Ray Pupedis, our entemology collections manager. Ray is the one I am pestering for information about the insects I am sculpting. I asked him to help me understand the thorax of the bedbug. Every image I have found has these details obscured by the legs. I know there are 6 legs that attach to the thorax, but the shape of the thorax is, to me, unknown .
So, Ray got out his dissecting tools, a pair of fine surgical forceps and tiny probes he made from fine pins called minutens glued into toothpicks!
Ray was able to remove several of the legs completely so I could get a good view of the leg insertion points in the thorax. Then, he tore the thorax away from the abdomen so I could see a cross section of the area that attaches to the abdomen. Ray drew his own illustration (Unkown to most, he’s a very good scientific illustrator) to explain it to me. I would then look under the microscope to see for myself.
I took home my notes and jumped right into my sculpting, making the meso/metanotum (the part of the thorax with the 2nd and 3rd pair of legs) much deeper than what I had originally sculpted.