Copyright © 2007 Dorling Kindersley
An insect’s body divides into three sections. The head holds the eyes, antennae, and mouthparts. The thorax bears three pairs of jointed legs and two pairs of wings. The abdomen contains the digestive system and the sex organs. Most insects undergo a complete change between the larval stage and the adult form.
There are more different types of insect than of any other kind of animal, with over one million identified species. Most live on land or in the air, but a number also live in fresh water.
Features: two pairs of matching wings, long abdomen, carnivorous when adult, dragonflies rest with wings open, damselfies with wings folded
Features: straight, tough forewings, short antennae, escape by jumping on powerful hindlegs, chewing mouthparts
Features: scaled bodies and wings, proboscis, antennae, butterflies have club-ended antennae and fly by day, moths fly by night
Features: two pairs of wings, protruding rostrum (mouthpiece) that is used for piercing and sucking
Features: tough elytra (front wings) fold over membranous hindwings protecting them, can squeeze into small spaces
Features: most have a single pair of flight wings, some have a thin body and thread-like antennae, others a bigger body and short antennae