Insect Orders: Hemiptera

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Insect Orders: Hemiptera

Hemiptera (Hemi = half & pteron = wing):

E.g. Bugs, Aphids, Whiteflies, Leaf hoppers, Mealy bugs, Scales insects, Pyrilla etc.


1. Two pairs of wings usually present the anterior pair of wings most often of harder consistency than the posterior pair, either uniformly so (Homoptera) or with the apical portion more membranous than the remainder (Heteroptera).

2. Head position Opisthognathous with mouth parts piercing and suctorial, palps atrophied.

3. Labium (2 to 4 segmented) forming a dorsally grooved sheath, in which lie two pairs of bristle like stylets viz. mandibular & maxillary.

4. Antennae generally of five or fewer segments.

5. Thorax well developed in some cases pronotum triangular.

6. Abdomen soft, tapering at the end or bulging. Cerci totally absent.

7. Metamorphosis usually incomplete, rarely complete.

The order has been classified into two sub-orders.

Sub-order: Heteroptera
(Heteros = dissimilar & pteron wing)

  1. Head usually movable porrect.
  2. Base of the rostrum not touching the anterior coxae.
  3. Wings folding flat over abdomen.
  4. Fore wings sclerotized basally and membranous towards apex (Hemelytra).
  5. Pronotum large.
  6. Tarsi 3 – segmented.
  7. Metamorphosis commonly incomplete.

Sub-order: Homoptera
(Homo = similar & pteron = wing)

  1. Head usually immovable more or less deflexed.
  2. Base of the rostrum extending between anterior coxae.
  3. Wings usually slopping over the sides of the body.
  4. Fore wings of uniform consistency throughout.
  5. Pronotum small.
  6. Tarsi 1 to 3 segmented.
  7.  Metamorphosis usually incomplete but sometimes complete in males.

Important Families:

I) Suborder – Heteroptera:

1. Coreidae                 e.g. Rice earhead bug. Tur pod bug and Leaf footed bug.
2. Lygaeidae               e.g. Dusky cotton bug.
3. Pyrrhocoridae          e.g. Red cotton bug and Red bug.
4. Reduviidae              e.g. Reduvid bug and Assassin bug.
5. Tingidae                 e.g. Lace bug and Tingid bug.
6. Pentatomidae          e.g. Painted bug.
7. Cimicidae                e.g. Bed bug.

II) Suborder – Homoptera:

1. Cicadellidae             e.g. Leaf hoppers (Jassids)
2. Fulgoridae               e.g. Sugarcane pyrilla
3. Membracidae          e.g. Tree hopper
4. Delphacidae           e.g. Delphacid
5. Cicadidae              e.g. Cicada
6. Aphididae              e.g. Aphids (Plant lice)
7. Psyllidae               e.g. Citrus psylla
8. Aleyrodidae           e.g. White fly
9. Lacciferidae          e.g. Lac insect
10. Coccidae            e.g. Scale insect
11. Pseudococcidae   e.g. Mealy bug

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