School of Life Sciences | Ask A Biologist

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Hymenoptera and Orthoptera

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  • Complete metamorphosis: a change in body form with four stages: egg, larva, pupa, and adult.
  • Incomplete metamorphosis: a change in body form with three stages: egg, nymph, and adult.
  • Larva: the second, "worm-like" stage in the life cycle of insects that undergo complete metamorphosis (like caterpillars).
  • Metamorphosis: dramatic change in body form... more
  • Pupa: resting stage during which tissues are reorganized from larval form to adult form. The pupa is the third body form in the life cycle of insects that undergo complete metamorphosis (like caterpillars).

Hymenoptera

Hymenoptera is one of the largest orders of insects, and includes common insects such as sawflies, wasps, bees and ants. This group of insects is named Hymenoptera because of their heavy wings. They range in size from very small to large and usually have two pairs of wings.

Most insects in this group are herbivores because they eat mostly leaves or pine needles. Some of the insects in this group are predators, like the stinging wasps, which paralyze their prey and use this as food to feed their larvae. This group of insect also includes bees who will feed on nectar and pollen.

The Hymenoptera order of insects will undergo complete metamorphosis, which means that they have a worm-like larval stage which will change into a pupa and from there they will hatch and mature into adults.

Bees and wasp

Orthoptera

Grasshoppers belong to the order of insects called Orthoptera. They are related to crickets and katydids but look different because they have larger hind legs and short, thick antennae.

Grasshoppers are primarily herbivores and feed on various plants but will occasionally eat other insects.

They have a life cycle that begins from eggs that will then transform into nymphal stages or instars and finally mature into adults.

grasshoppers

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Be part of Ask A Biologist

by volunteering, or simply sending us feedback on the site. Scientists, teachers, writers, illustrators, and translators are all important to the program. If you are interested in helping with the website we have a Volunteer page to get the process started.