Springtails are tiny, soft-bodied arthropods related to but different from insects. Insects and springtails both have six legs and belong to the same superclass of Hexapoda, but springtails branch off and belong to the class Collembola. The main difference is that insects have external mouth parts whereas springtails have internal ones. There are two general body types: elongated and spherical.
Springtails are wingless but as their name suggests, they have a spring-like appendage under their abdomen called the furcula, which they engage when disturbed, enabling them to ‘jump’ up to 75 mm. They are usually white, but different species can be red, orange, yellow, green, blue, black and even violet.
The nymphs are mini versions of the adults.
As well as being able to jump away from predators, they exude toxic chemicals when attacked.
Adult size: 0.25mm-3mm