The Strepsiptera (known in older literature as twisted-winged parasites) are an order of insects with ten families making up about 600 species. The early stage larvae and the short-lived adult males are free-living but most of their life is spent as endoparasites in other insects such as bees, wasps, leafhoppers, silverfish, and cockroaches.
Odonata is an order of insects, encompassing dragonflies (Anisoptera) and damselflies (Zygoptera). The word dragonfly is also sometimes used to refer to all Odonata. The term odonate has been coined to provide an English name for the group as a whole, but is not in common usage; most Odonata enthusiasts avoid ambiguity by using the term true dragonfly, or simply Anisoptera, when referring to just the Anisoptera.
A dragonfly is a type of insect belonging to the order Odonata, the suborder Epiprocta or, in the strict sense, the infraorder Anisoptera. It is characterized by large multifaceted eyes, two pairs of strong transparent wings, and an elongated body. Dragonflies are similar to damselflies, but the adults can be differentiated by the fact that the wings of most dragonflies are held away from, and perpendicular to, the body when at rest.
Damselflies (suborder Zygoptera) are insects in the order Odonata. Damselflies are similar to dragonflies, but the adults can be differentiated by the fact that the wings of most damselflies are held along, and parallel to, the body when at rest. Furthermore, the hindwing of the damselfly is essentially similar to the forewing, while the hindwing of the dragonfly broadens near the base, caudal to the connecting point at the body.
Hoverflies, sometimes called flower flies or syrphid flies, make up the insect family Syrphidae. As their common name suggests, they are often seen hovering or nectaring at flowers; the adults of many species feed mainly on nectar and pollen, while the larvae eat a wide range of foods. In some species, the larvae are saprotrophs, eating decaying plant and animal matter in the soil or in ponds and streams.
Wasps of the genus Sphex (commonly known as digger wasps) are cosmopolitan predators of the family Sphecidae that sting and paralyze prey insects. There are over 130 known digger wasp species. In preparation for egg laying they construct a protected "nest" (some species dig nests in the ground, while others use pre-existing holes) and then stock it with captured insects. Typically the prey are left alive, but paralyzed by wasp toxins. The wasps lay their eggs in the provisioned nest.
A biocide is a chemical substance capable of killing living organisms, usually in a selective way. Biocides are commonly used in medicine, agriculture, forestry, and in industry where they prevent the fouling of water and oil pipelines. Some substances used as biocides are also employed as anti-fouling agents or disinfectants under other circumstances: chlorine, for example, is used as a short-life biocide in industrial water treatment but as a disinfectant in swimming pools.
Chalcid wasps (superfamily Chalcidoidea) belong to the insect order Hymenoptera, and are one of the largest groups within the order, with some 22,000 known species, and an estimated total diversity of anywhere from 60,000 to more than 500,000 species, meaning the vast majority have yet to be discovered and described. Most of the species are parasitoids of other insects, attacking the egg or larval stage of their host, though many other life cycles are known.
Hornets are the largest eusocial wasps; some species can reach up to 55 mm (2.2 in) in length. The true hornets make up the genus Vespa and are distinguished from other vespines by the width of the vertex (part of the head behind the eyes), which is proportionally larger in Vespa and by the anteriorly rounded gasters (the section of the abdomen behind the wasp waist).
Black and yellow mud dauber is a common name for the sphecid wasp species Sceliphron caementarium. They are solitary insects that build nests out of mud in sheltered locations, frequently on man-made structures such as bridges, barns, open porches or under the eaves of houses. These nests are not aggressively defended, and stings are rare .
Tachinidae is a large and rather variable family of true flies within the insect order Diptera, with more than 8,200 known species and many more to be discovered. There are over 1300 species in North America. Insects in this family are commonly called tachina flies or simply tachinids. They occur in almost all habitats all over the world. There are Neotropical, Nearctic, Afrotropical, Palaearctic, Oriental, Australasian and Oceanic species.
Bombyliidae is a large family of flies with hundreds of genera, although their life cycles are not well known. Adults generally feed on nectar and pollen, thus are pollinators of flowers. They superficially resemble bees, thus are commonly called bee flies, and this may offer the adults some protection from predators. The larval stages are predators or parasitoids of other insect eggs and larvae.
Bacillus thuringiensis serovar israelensis (Bti) is a group of bacteria used as biological control agents for larvae stages of certain Dipterans. Bti produces toxins which are effective in killing various species of mosquitoes, fungus gnats, and blackflies, while having almost no effect on other organisms. Indeed this is one of the major advantages of B. thuringiensis products in general is that they are thought to affect few non-target species.
Paper wasps are 3/4 to 1 inch (1.9 to 2.5 cm)-long wasps that gather fibers from dead wood and plant stems, which they mix with saliva, and use to construct water-resistant nests made of gray or brown papery material. Paper wasps are also sometimes called umbrella wasps, due to the distinctive design of their nests or other regional variants such as Trinidad & Tobago's use of Jack Spaniard.
Apocrita is a suborder of insects in the order Hymenoptera. The Apocrita includes wasps, bees and ants, and consists of many families. It includes the most advanced Hymenoptera and is distinguished from the Symphyta by the narrow "waist" formed between the first two segments of the actual abdomen; the first abdominal segment is fused to the thorax, and is called the propodeum.
The Ichneumonoidea are insects classified in the hymenopteran suborder Apocrita. The superfamily is made up of the ichneumon wasps (often inaccurately called "ichneumon flies"; family Ichneumonidae) and the braconids (family Braconidae). Like other parasitic wasps, they were long placed in the "Parasitica", variously considered as an infraorder or an unranked clade, but actually not a monophyletic group.
Ichneumonidae is a family within the insect order Hymenoptera. Insects in this family are commonly called ichneumon wasps. Less exact terms are ichneumon flies (they are not closely related to true flies), or scorpion wasps due to the extreme lengthening and curving of the abdomen (scorpions are not insects).
The soldier beetles, Cantharidae, are relatively soft-bodied, straight-sided beetles, related to the Lampyridae or firefly family, but being unable to produce light. They are cosmopolitan in distribution. One common British species is bright red, reminding people of the red coats of soldiers, hence the common name. A secondary common name is leatherwing, obtained from the texture of the wing covers.
Scutigera coleoptrata (one of several species commonly known as the house centipede), is a yellowish-grey centipede with 15 pairs of legs. Originally endemic to the Mediterranean region, the species has spread to other parts of the world, where it usually lives in human homes. It is an insectivore; it kills and eats arthropods such as insects and arachnids. It is also known as a "mustache bug" in certain cultures, and in many places of America are (mistakenly) referred to as silverfish.
Harmonia axyridis is a large coccinellid beetle originally native to eastern Asia, but which has been introduced to North America and Europe to control aphids and scale insects. It is now common, well known and spreading in those regions. It is commonly known as Asian lady beetle, or Japanese ladybug, in North America, and Harlequin ladybird in the United Kingdom (the latter name because it occurs in numerous color forms).
Reduviidae (from the contained genus, Reduvius which comes from the Latin ' meaning hangnail or remnant) is a large, cosmopolitan family of predatory insects in the suborder Heteroptera. It includes assassin bugs, wheel bugs (Arilus cristatus), and thread-legged bugs. There are about 7000 species altogether, making it one of the largest families in the Hemiptera.
Cicada killer wasps are large, solitary wasps in the family Crabronidae. The name may be applied to any species of Crabronid which uses cicadas as prey, though in North America it is typically applied to a single species, Sphecius speciosus, often simply referred to as "The cicada killer". However, since there are multiple species of related wasps, it is more appropriate to call it the Eastern cicada killer. This species occurs in the eastern and midwest U.S.
Mantis religiosa, referred to as the European Mantis outside of Europe and known simply as the Praying Mantis in Europe and elsewhere, is one of the most well-known and widespread species of the order, Mantodea. Originating in southern Europe, the European Mantis was introduced to North America in 1899 on a shipment of nursery plants. Now they are found all over the north-eastern United States and Canada to the Pacific Northwest.
The Australian hornet (Abispa ephippium, actually a type of potter wasp or "mason wasp") is a vespid insect native to the Australian Capital Territory, New South Wales, Northern Territory, Queensland and Western Australia states of Australia. The Australian hornet is a solitary insect, forming small nests against buildings and other structures. The adult wasp feeds off of flower nectar while the larvae are fed caterpillars captured by the adults.
Toxorhynchites, also known as mosquito hawks or mosquito eaters, are a cosmopolitan genus and one of the few kinds of mosquito that do not suck blood. Rather, the adults subsist on nectar and other natural carbohydrates. Their larvae prey on the larvae of other mosquitoes. The name apparently comes from the Greek toxo meaning arrow and rhynch meaning snout. Most species occur in forests.