August 06, 2002

A Bug By Any


A Bug By Any Other Name

I have been caught in my own deceits by Bene Diction. You are correct, BD...moths are not bugs. But then, neither are beetles, bees, or bush crickets.

Only members of the Insect Order Hemiptera, are classified as "true bugs":

Although the name bug has become loosly applied to most small insect-like creatures, Hemipterans are the only insects correctly identified as bugs. Members of the Order Hemiptera are characterized by sucking mouthparts that originate from the tips of their head. Their forewings are also differentiated with a thickened base and membranous tip.

Moths and butterflies are Insects in the Order Lepidoptera, but they are not 'bugs', although the term bugs is used in everyday language to mean most anything small and leggy and creepy. Moths differ from butterflies in that they are generally drab and non-colorful, fly at night, and at rest, hold their wings like a person would hold their arms out to their sides, while butterflies are colorful, day-feeders, and hold their wings up overhead, like a person reaching with both arms toward the sky.

Do take a look at the Entomological Database of Very Cool Bugs, a wonderful celebration of our Joint-legged fellow-creatures.

The hope in my garden and insect lore here at Fragments is to have you appreciate that there is beauty, a vast wealth of learning, a source for awe and wonder... under our feet, over our heads, in our gardens and pastures, in the small things... the 'foolish things of the world to confound the wise'. I hope you enjoy what you find here and should warn you that there will be a graded ten-question pop test coming up soon, so pay attention!

Posted by fred1st at August 6, 2002 08:30 AM
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