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» Fundamentals to Entomology
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Current Category » Introduction to Entomology

Bases of Insect Classification

1. Presence of Absence of Wings:

a) Apterygota:  e.g. Silverfish.
b) Pterygota: e.g. Butterfly.
Pterygota is divided into:
i. Exopterygota:  e.g. Red Cotton Bug and Cockroach.
ii. Endopterygota: e.g. Moths and Butterflies.

2. Types of Mouth Parts:

a. Chewing and biting: e.g. Cockroach and Grasshopper.
b. Chewing and lapping: e.g. Honeybee.
c. Piercing and sucking: e.g. Red Cotton Bug.
d. Sponging: e.g. Housefly.
e. Siphoning: e.g. Moths Butterflies.
f. Rasping and sucking; e.g. Thrips.

3. Types of Metamorphosis:

a. Ametabolous: e.g. Silverfish.
b. Hemimetabolous: e.g. Cockroach and Grasshopper.
c. Holometabolous: e.g. Moths and Butterflies, Beetle and Weevils.
d. Hypermetabolous: e.g. Blister Beetle.

4. On the Basis of Feeding Habits:

a) Herbivorous: e.g. Stem borer, Aphids and Grasshopper.
b) Carnivorous: e.g. Preying mantid and Lady bird beetle.
c) Omnivorous: e.g. Cockroach.

Herbivorous insects are classified into following groups:
a) Monophagous: e.g. Jowar shoot fly.
b) Oligophagous: e.g. Groundnut leaf miner.
c) Polyphagous: e.g. Helicoverpa armigera.

5. On the basis of reproduction:

a) Viviparous: e.g. Aphid.
b) Oviparous: e.g. Aphid.
c) Parthenogenesis: e.g. Aphid.
d) Polyembryoni: e.g. Larva of Cecidomyiids.
e) Hermaphroditism: e.g. Earthworms.

6. Economic Classification of Insects
A) Possessing Economic Importance
B) No Economic Importance (Harmless insects)


I) Harmful

a. Pests of Crops (soil, leaf, tissue fruit borer)
b. Pests of stored products (Rice weevil, Rice moth)
c. Pests of human being & animals (Mosquito, Housefly, Cattle fly, Horsefly, Louse)

II) Beneficial

A) Productive                                          B) Helpful
* Products from secretion of insects     * Aid in pollination – honey bee
* (silk, honey, lac)                                  * Parasitoids (Trichogramma spp.)
* Useful bodies                                  * & Predators (Lady Bird beetle)
i) Cochineal insect – Dye                     * Scientific investigation -Drosophilla spp.
ii) Blister beetle Cantharidin              
iii) Stonefly – fish bait
* Collect plant products (Nectar-Honeybee)  * Destroy Weed – Lantana flies
* Products from plant galls – Tannic acid      * Scavenger – Springtails, Dun

Current Category » Introduction to Entomology