So ugly it broke my microscope!

Posted by Graeme Lyons , Monday 24 January 2011 18:51

On the way back from the cornershop today I noticed this harvestman on a wall and decided to key it out. I was pretty sure it was the one I have seen a few times this winter on walls and hedges in the middle of Brighton and indeed it was being Opilio parietinus. A common, widespread and highly synanthropic species. However, all is not well with my microscope. Whilst zooming in on this specimen, the two eye pieces suddenly went out of sync. The microscope functions perfectly but  now only at about x25 zoom. I carefully opened it up and it is clear that a plastic belt of cogs around one eye piece has perished (see the rather steam-punk photograph below). I think fixing it myself is beyond me. I now have to get it fixed ASAP as it's really quite frustrating having it stuck on a relatively high magnification but that means not having it for a while, possibly several months, whilst it's being fixed! A real spanner-in-the-works for my mission to 4000. At least it's not mid-summer...

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