“The world of small.” An approach to the universe of arthropods from an artistic, visual, aesthetic and evolutionary perspective. By Cynthia Bandurek
Survival in the natural world has always proved to be a complex task, generating enormous creative potential; it has been the architect of unusual strategies and adaptations.
These pages are an invitation to appreciate a world often unknown, the world of arthropods, discovering its beauty, its complexity and some attractive aspects of their lives, as happen to be some of their strategies for survival and reproduction. This knowledge will help us to see the sense of their behavior and reflect on its importance as living beings, and allowing us to extend this estimate to the rest of the life forms that inhabit every corner of our vast and wonderful planet.
Because of the smallness of these animals and the limitations of our own biology, which prevents us from seeing at first glance certain details, we use technical means such as macro photography to reveal an infinite set of structures, functions and colors, adventuring and overcoming limits crossed by any author of fiction. Exploring and experiencing an approach to the behavior of arthropods, the interstices of this amazing and almost imperceptible universe remain exposed.
Conservation of these beings is essential to ensure the existence of an intricate network supported by complex relationships, which allow the fragile balance of life and, therefore, our existence. This could be enough to consider their protection, however, there is another aspect that adds importance to conservation: the intrinsic value of life. That is, that it exceeds expressions based on valuations and earnings for the human being, to open scenarios in which the manifestation of life is a value in itself.
The intent of this book and this particular approach is to transmit the fascination that has always caused me Nature, especially the world of small, to share, to spread it and counter, to some extent, the negative connotation involving arthropods when a sense of fear and uncertainty of the unknown prevails in us.
The goal of the texts that follow aims to add descriptions of some of the behaviors or striking features that help discover in greater depth these fantastic beings. Therefore, although the information provided has scientific validity, it is not a technical book about them, considering the poetic license that I have taken at the time of speaking of some, especially evolutionary, concepts. Evolution, whose main mechanism is natural selection, works mostly over mutations and characteristics that originate at random, taking from them the most adapted to the environment, at the time and in the space in which they arose.