Classify Insects Zoom in on True Bugs

Imagine you’re part of the scientific fieldwork team out looking for new and interesting animals to study. Your challenge: Classify the animals you find.

Classify This!
Can you sift an assortment of animals? Go
Name-a-Bug Challenge
Will your entry become a household name? Go
Have you looked closely at insects? Go

Arachnid (a-rak-ned)
A class of usually eight-legged arthropods including spiders, scorpions, mites, and ticks

Arthropod (ar-thruh-pod)
An animal that has a hard outer skeleton and three or more pairs of legs that can bend

Botanist (bot-uh-nist)
A scientist who studies plants

Entomologist (en-te-ma-le-jist)
A scientist who studies insects

Exoskeleton (ek-so-ske-le-ten)
A hard structure on the outside of an animal, such as the shell of a lobster, crab, or insect.

Heteroptera (heder-op-terah)
The scientific name for true bugs; “hetero” means different and “ptera” means wings. The front wings of true bugs are distinctively leathery and membranous.

Insect (in-sekt)
An invertebrate with three pairs of legs, one or two pairs of wings, three main sections to its body and an exoskeleton

Invertebrate (in-vur-tuh-brit)
A creature without a backbone. Insects, octopuses, earthworms, and snails are examples of invertebrates

Larva (lar-vuh)
An insect at the stage of development between an egg and a pupa. A caterpillar is the larva of a moth or a butterfly

Metamorphosis (met-uh-mor-fuh-siss)
The series of changes certain animals go through as they develop from eggs to adults

Miridae (meer-eh-day)
A large family of small often brightly colored true bugs that feed mostly on plants

Molting (mohlt-ing)
When an animal’s outer covering of fur, feathers, or skin comes off so that a new covering can grow

Nymph (nimf)
An immature – or young -- insect that resembles the adult but is smaller and lacks wings.

Phylum (fi-lum)
A major division within the animal and plant kingdoms

Pupa (pyoo-puh)
An insect at the stage of development between a larva and an adult

Stink Glands (stingk gland)
An organ in the body that produces and releases chemicals

Thorax (thor-aks)
The middle of the three main divisions of the body of an insect. Also, the part of a mammal’s body between the neck and the abdomen.

Vertebrate (ver-tuh-brit or vur-tuh-brate)
Any animal that has a backbone. Mammals, fish, and snakes are examples of vertebrates